Smithsonian Voices

From the Smithsonian Museums

Elisa Hough

Elisa Hough is the editor and social media manager at the Smithsonian Center for Folklife and Cultural Heritage.

Carolyn Smith collecting beargrass in Klamath National Forest, 2015. For beargrass to be supple enough for weavers to use in their baskets, it needs to be burned annually. Ideally, it is burned in an intentionally set cultural fire, where only the tops are burned, leaving the roots intact. Prescribed fires in the Klamath National Forest are few and far between, so weavers “follow the smoke” and gather, when they can, after wildfires sweep through the landscape. (Photo courtesy of Carolyn Smith)

How Indigenous Ecological Knowledge Offers Solutions to California’s Wildfires

“We need to reintegrate Indigenous traditional ecological knowledge and cultural and prescribed burning into our landscape,” Carolyn Smith says.

Elizabeth Acevedo (Photo by Jonathan B. Tucker)

How Poet Elizabeth Acevedo Brings Sacred Monsters to Life