evergreen concepts

Photo by Kameron Richie


This glossary is a list of evergreen concepts that shape this issue of Radicle Magazine. These terms are a lens that can be used to frame the world around us and help us imagine our place in the environment. So basically, this is what we know and this is how we’re living. As you look at this issue’s snapshot, we hope you take what you’ve learned and apply it to your own life, teach others, and continue to grow!

Note: The page numbers show where each word appears in the print issue.


Black Geography: The study of framing race and place as inherently connected.This field of thought addresses the social, racial, and historic contexts that influence placemaking throughout the African diaspora (page 72). 


Blood Quantum Laws: Laws imposed by the U.S. Government that define Native American identity by percentages of ancestry. Many tribes don’t use blood quantum as part of their enrollment criteria (pages 11, 14). 


Botany: The study of plants (pages 4, 62). 


The Bulk Section: The area in a grocery store where you can shop for foods by weight rather than individual packages. (page 39, 47). 


Colonial: A term that describes the historical and contemporary practice of a power extending its authority over other land and (often forcefully) imposing its customs on Indigenous people of that land (pages 11, 13). 


Compost: Decomposed organic matter (like food scraps and leaves) that is used to add nutrients to soil and feed plants (pages 39, 47). 


Conservation: The practice of maintaining our natural resources so that we never use more than can be naturally created in a given time period (page 4). 


Earth Curiosity: Our innate connection to and interest in the natural environment (pages 4, 6-7, 26, 36, 67, 88).  

Ecowomanism: A framework of thought that expands upon Environmental Justice by centering the lived experiences of Black women to address intersecting issues of race, class, gender, spirituality, and the environment. Alice Walker, among others, is a notable writer of ecowomanism (page 48).

The Environment: Where we live, work, and play (pages 3, 50, 72). 

Environmental Justice: A concept that addresses the history of systemic neglect, pollution, and degradation of the environments of people of color. Advocates for access to healthy living environments for all people regardless of race, color, national origin, or income (page 72, see Rooted (In)Justice fold-out)

Environmental Justice Movement: Started by people of color as a means of addressing inequity in environmental protections in their communities. The movement contextualizes social and racial justice within issues of the environment, focusing on matters of health, safety, and access for historically marginalized communities (page 49). 

Environmental Racism: The disproportionate impact of environmental hazards on communities of color upheld by institutional policies and intentional systemic neglect (page 49).

Ethnobotanical: The study of a specific region’s plants and their practical uses based on the regionally specific traditional knowledge (page 77). 

Food Apartheid: A systemic assessment of access (or lack of access) to affordable, healthy food within an accessible distance. This concept expands on the term Food Desert, the absence of grocery stores and markets with fresh produce in low-income communities of color, by taking into account the scale, root causes, and insidious nature of disparities in food access (page 49). 


Germination: The process that develops a previously dormant seed into a sprout (pages 3, 4-5). 

Guerrilla Garden: The resourceful practice of gardening on land without express permission or “legal” rights to access. These gardens are often created by repurposing spaces such as abandoned lots, uncared for land, or private property (page 74). 

Guerrilla Poetry: Using the power of word to confront violence. Guerilla poetry is spellwork for justice. It is one of the many tactics involved in the movement for our collective liberation (page 48). 


Indigeneity: Outside of its contested legal meaning, is a term that describes a cultural and spiritual connection to a place (pages 9-10, 14). 

Land Acknowledgement: The practice of naming and uplifting the people Indigenous to a specific land. Often shared as a statement at the start of public gatherings to recognize the (forcibly) stolen land on which others now gather and inhabit (page 15). 

Land History: Memory, family stories, inherited recipes, and personal connections that shape the character and legacy of a specific place (pages 72, 74, 76). 

Land Stewardship: The practice of tending to and coexisting with the land in a way that conserves the land over time (page 4).


National People of Color Environmental Leadership Summit: The pivotal 1991 convening of over 300 national and global people of color in Washington, DC to affirm and address the environmental priorities for their communities. This gathering served as the founding location for the Principles of Environmental Justice, which now serve as a key reference point for the Environmental Justice Movement (see Rooted (In)Justice fold-out).

Native-land.ca: An interactive map by Native Land Digital that helps you learn more about the aboriginal people and Indigenous culture of the land in which you are situated (page 11). 

Nature Engagement: Interactions with the natural world for pleasure and healing (page 4). 


Plantation Slavery: The foundation of the American economy. The establishment of the land-based enslavement of Black people that developed in the American South (positioned in contrast to Urban Slavery). This has since served as the basis for consequent and current systems of slavery such as sharecropping and the prison-industrial complex (page 75). 

Preservation: The practice of protecting and maintaining our natural resources so that they continue to thrive and exist (page 4, 79). 


Radicle: The first shoot to emerge from a seed during the development process of germination, which catalyzes the plant’s growth. Also, in homage to this botanical structure, is an annual publication by Earth in Color that invites readers to take root through art, stories, and activities that explore the environment and sustainability with Black voices and perspectives at the center (page 3-5). 

Redlining: The harmful practice of making resources and services inaccessible to residents of certain areas based on race or ethnicity. Includes the denial of financial services (loans, mortgages, etc.) based on area of residency versus qualifications. Most frequently “redlined” areas are populated by lower income Black residents (page 75). 

Reparations: Recognition of and compensation for the violent and traumatic legacy of the Transatlantic Slave Trade, and the current ways its legacy manifests. For the Black diaspora, redressing this harm has been envisioned as payments in the form of land, money, legal and systemic reform, institutional endowments, and beyond (see Rooted (In)Justice fold-out).

Reservation: A system created by white settlers to remove Native Americans off of lands on which they wanted to settle. Reservation land was established to confine forcibly displaced Native peoples to specific land designated by the government (page 10, 13-14). 


Survivance: A way of life that extends beyond just survival, embodied by an active sense of presence. A critical term in Native American thought (page 10). 

Sustainability: The capacity for the biosphere and human civilization to coexist. The practice of meeting our current needs without compromising the ability of future generations to do the same (page 17-18, 21, 25, 38, 47). 

Territory: A complicated term with many meanings that relate to Native American culture and land. According to Native Land Digital, this term is “slippery” because it can mean strongly defined boundaries, general land familiarity and habitation, historically inhabited areas, or how people identify themselves (page 31). 

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