Ancient and Modern Worlds | Global Oneness Project

Global Oneness Project

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In this lesson, students watch a film about the Gamo people of the Ethiopian Rift Valley and explore how their ancient worldview raises questions about our modern way of life. This isolated area is one of the most densely populated rural regions of Africa, yet its people have been farming sustainably for 10,000 years. The film explores how the interconnected worldview of the Gamo people is fundamental in achieving long-term sustainability, both in the region and beyond.

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October 2018
Overall, it's wonderful! However, the narrative set-up for the filmed quote (at 17:04) from the executive director of UNEP is not done well; it will be misleading for any viewer who does not already have accurate knowledge of how well organic agriculture compares to conventional or high-input agriculture. In the quote at 17:04, the speaker uses the term "traditional agriculture" in a context that is confusing and misleading. Traditional organic agriculture is what the Gamo Highlands people have been practicing for thousands of years. A prior discussion and defining of all these terms will be needed - and will be vital - for students or other viewers to derive a clear and accurate understanding of the crucial point being made in this segment, of comparing the productivity of two or more differing types of agricultural practices. Also, the lesson/classroom discussion should address the differing externalized costs - to human health and to the land and water - of these contrasting agricultural practices.
October 2018
Thanks for your message. We appreciate your attention to detail and for defining these terms. The aim of both the film and the companion lesson plan is to provide an overview of the story and provide one entry point to lead a classroom discussion. We recognize that each teacher will have varying foci, depending on the course and curriculum and additional work might be needed to define specific terms and make connections. We will make note of your suggestions as we aim to improve our offerings. Thanks again!