Polynya Press

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    December 2020

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    December 2020

    Our Whole Gwich’in Way of Life Has Changed / Gwich’in K’yuu Gwiidandài’ Tthak Ejuk Gòonlih is an invaluable compilation of historical and cultural information based on a project originally conceived by the Gwich’in Social and Cultural Institute to document the biographies of the oldest Gwich’in Elders in the Gwich’in Settlement Region. Through their own stories, twenty-three Gwich’in Elders from the Northwest Terr... [READ MORE]

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    "I listened to my mum, my dad, my gramma, that is why I am still here. That is how you stay alive." —Mida Donnessey

    Wisdom Engaged demonstrates how traditional knowledge, Indigenous approaches to healing, and the insights of Western bio-medicine can complement each other when all voices are heard in a collaborative effort to address changes to Indigenous communities’ well-being. In this collection, voices of Elders, healers, physicians, a... [READ MORE]

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    Our parents always taught us well. They told us to look on the good side of life and to accept what has to happen.

    The Man Who Lived with a Giant is a collection of traditional and personal stories told by Johnny Neyelle, a Dene Elder from Déline, Northwest Territories. Johnny used storytelling to teach Dene youth and others to understand and celebrate Dene traditions and knowledge. Johnny’s voice makes his stories accessible to readers young and ol... [READ MORE]

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    John Rae is best known today as the first European to reveal the fate of the Franklin Expedition, yet the range of Rae’s accomplishments is much greater. Over five expeditions, Rae mapped some 1,550 miles (2,494 kilometres) of Arctic coastline; he is undoubtedly one of the Arctic’s greatest explorers, yet today his significance is all but lost. John Rae, Arctic Explorer is an annotated version of Rae’s unfinished autobiography. William Barr has extended R... [READ MORE]

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    The transfer of knowledge is a key issue in the North as Indigenous Peoples meet the ongoing need to adapt to cultural and environmental change. In eight essays, experts survey critical issues surrounding the knowledge practices of the Inuit of northern Canada and Greenland and the Northern Sámi of Scandinavia, and the difficulties of transferring that knowledge from one generation to the next. Reflecting the ongoing work of the Research Group Circumpolar Cultures, th... [READ MORE]

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    “Turning to face north, face the north, we enter our own unconscious. Always, in retrospect, the journey north has the quality of dream.” Margaret Atwood, “True North”

    In this interdisciplinary collection, sixteen scholars from twelve countries explore the notion of the North as a realm of the supernatural. This region has long been associated with sorcerous inhabitants, mythical tribes, metaphysical forces of good and evil, and a range... [READ MORE]

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    People across Canada’s North have created vibrant community institutions to serve a wide range of social and economic needs. Neither state-driven nor profit-oriented, these organizations form a relatively under-studied third sector of the economy. Researchers from the Social Economy Research Network of Northern Canada explore this sector through fifteen case studies, encompassing artistic, recreational, cultural, political, business, and economic development organiza... [READ MORE]

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    The Sámi—Indigenous people of northernmost Europe—have relied on Traditional Healing methods over generations. This pioneering volume documents, in accessible language, local healing traditions and demonstrates the effectiveness of using the resources local communities can provide. This collection of essays by ten experts also records how ancient healing traditions and modern health-care systems have worked together, and sometimes competed, to provide solu... [READ MORE]