Arctic Adaptations: Native Whalers and Reindeer Herders of Northern Eurasia
University Press of New England
Copyright © 1993 Copyright Igor Krupnik
About the Book
The common view of indigenous Arctic cultures, even among scholarly observers, has long been one of communities continually in ecological harmony with their natural environment. In Arctic Adaptations, Igor Krupnik dismisses the textbook notion of traditional societies as static. Using information from years of field research, interviews with native Siberians, and archaeological site visits, Krupnik demonstrates that these societies are characterized not by stability but by dynamism and significant evolutionary breaks. Their apparent state of ecological harmony is, in fact, a conscious survival strategy resulting from "a prolonged and therefore successful process of human adaptation in one of the most extreme inhabited environments in the world." As their physical and cultural environment has changed—fluctuating reindeer and caribou herds, unpredictable weather patterns, introduction of firearms and better seacraft—Arctic communities have adapted by developing distinctive subsistence practices, social structures, and ethics regarding utilization of natural resources. Krupnik's pioneering work represents a dynamic marriage of ethnography and ecology, and makes accessible to Western scholars crucial findings and archival data previously unavailable because of political and language barriers.
About the Author
A leading figure in Arctic and Native Studies, Igor Krupnik is a Visiting Fellow at the Arctic Studies Center of Smithsonian Institution and a Fellow at the Institute of Ethnology at the Academy of Science in Moscow. He is a founding council member of the International Arctic Social Science Association.
About the Electronic Publication
This electronic publication of Arctic Adaptations was made possible with the permission of the author. The University Press of New England created EPUB and PDF files from a scanned copy of the book.
Published with permission of Igor Krupnik.
Dartmouth College Library assigns a Creative Commons BY-NC license to the digital work and associated web site.
Bibliographic InformationPublished by University Press of New England, Hanover, 1993. ISBN 9780874516333, 355 pages.
Print edition: GF891 .K7813 1993