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Wakan Tipi and Indian Mounds Park: Reclaiming an Indigenous feminine sacred site

Roxanne Gould, Jim Rock


The colonization of Turtle Island (North America) resulted in genocide and attempts to erase the Indigenous and feminine cosmologies that permeated Indigenous lands, particularly Indigenous centers of power. This article uses a case study approach to critically examine the history, cosmology, destruction and restoration of an Indigenous sacred site located near present- day St. Paul, Minnesota, known to the Dakota peoples as Wakaŋ Tipi or Wakaŋyaŋ Tipi, names once incompletely translated as “sacred dwelling place” or “they live sacredly.” Wakaŋ Tipi, with its feminine birth mounds and unique ecology, is the place that connects earth and sky. The site has drawn Indigenous peoples from all over the world to learn from its teachings. The article includes discussion on the collaboration that has restored this sacred place from a toxic waste dump to a site where ceremony and learning can take place once again.

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Print ISSN 1177-1801 Online ISSN 1174-1740