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Inuit Knowledge and Climate Change

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Nunavut-based director Zacharias Kunuk (Atanarjuat The Fast Runner) and researcher and filmmaker Dr. Ian Mauro (Seeds of Change) have teamed up with Inuit communities to document their knowledge and experience regarding climate change. This new documentary, the world’s first Inuktitut language film on the topic, takes the viewer “on the land” with elders and hunters to explore the social and ecological impacts of a warming Arctic.

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Nunavut-based director Zacharias Kunuk (Atanarjuat The Fast Runner) and researcher and filmmaker Dr. Ian Mauro (Seeds of Change) have teamed up with Inuit communities to document their knowledge and experience regarding climate change. This new documentary, the world’s first Inuktitut language film on the topic, takes the viewer “on the land” with elders and hunters to explore the social and ecological impacts of a warming Arctic. This unforgettable film helps us to appreciate Inuit culture and expertise regarding environmental change and indigenous ways of adapting to it.

Exploring centuries of Inuit knowledge, allowing the viewer to learn about climate change first-hand from Arctic residents themselves, the film portrays Inuit as experts regarding their land and wildlife and makes it clear that climate change is a human rights issue affecting this ingenious Indigenous culture. Hear stories about Arctic melting and how Inuit believe that human and animal intelligence are key to adaptability and survival in a warming world.

Community-based screenings of the film are now being organized across Canada. Stay tuned for more information, new blog posts and videos added to this channel regularly.

Please feel free to contact us should you like to organize a screening in your area. Email us: isuma [at] isuma [dot] ca

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Anonymous's picture

Guess what? With all those beautiful glaciers melting, we find out that glaciers once displaced the Eskimos. Too bad that part didn't get passed down through the generations.

www.takepart.com/article/2012/09/09/ancient-eskimo-village-uncovered-thanks-depleting-arctic-ice-caps

Anonymous's picture

guess what? This artiticle doesn't diminish the doc IKCC at all, it is more or less what the INUIT are indicating, that there is a response that may be arrived at through research and listening to their experience. 

Anonymous's picture

obama should watch i said watch this video, he might learn something before the sun yes the sun goes down.

Anonymous's picture
Meaning?
Anonymous's picture

I impress Inuit people living style.After I watched this movie I have got an idea that many people still have the knowledge to  predict climate.Our karen people from Burma ethnicty we do still have those kinds of knowledge.Let me share a little bit of my tranditional prediction for climate.I am from poor karen family .I  live with my family in the farm.They   though me that as soon as the rain come if we eat the frog curry, we can look at the bone of frog thigh if the line of the blood far from each other we got rare rain.If we get the blood close to each other we will get a good rain for our farm.The one that I noticed from movie they do not use money.They share food to each other.Their living style is very simpleand maintain the enviornment.It mean that they love each other,honest,and not greedy in their life.Because of the industury revoluation it creat more disadvantage than advantage.However,evey tribe has each of their diet style.Some will be in farming,some will be in hunting and etc..Every thing has advantage and disadvantage.I hope that we won't cause the serious problem because of our action.

Anonymous's picture

Thank you for making this valuable resource available on the internet. It was very interesting to hear climate change accounts directly from the "local scientists" themselves. I thought the observations of the polar bears were especially interesting to hear.  

Anonymous's picture

 A very polished and impressive documentary which details the plight, issues, concerns, and insight of an underrepresented people. I particularly enjoyed the conflicting opinions about what they observed, I am specifically referring to the polar bear segment. It's refreshing to see how people from such tightly integrated culture can still view the same event and come to such a wide and diverse range of conclusions. This helps detail the challenges that are faced when trying to draw consensus among groups of individuals

Anonymous's picture

The issues of climate change facing these people are clearly portrayed in this documentary which brings to light some of the serious impacts associated with global warming. This film provides interesting insight on the relationships between indigenous peoples and western scientists by describing how each group portrays one another from diverse perspectives. It also reminds us the importance of all knowledge types, whether it has been learned just through living our daily lives or taught by a curriculum in education systems. Documentaries like these bring climate change to the forefront of discussion and remind us that this is a global reality affecting all communities in different ways.  Thank you for taking the time to film, produce, and share this documentary.

Anonymous's picture

It was wonderful to finally see th faces and hear the voices behind the clmate change problems in the Arctic.  I now have a better understanding of and perspective. Yhank you for allowing my class to view this video. 

Anonymous's picture

Thank You for the opportunity to view this video. It was very valuable to see in living color the plight of the people there.

I am hopefully that others will take into consideration the many messages contained in this piece and desire for more to see the very real changes taking place. Mahalo & Aloha. Ke Akua Pu!

Anonymous's picture

I viewed this with my students in a course “Traditional Ecological Knowledge and Climate Change on Islands” at the University of Hawaii. Although we are far from the Arctic, the issues that indigenous people on tropical islands face with regard to climate change resonate with what we heard and saw from the lived experiences, observations, and concerns of the Inuit. Livelihoods, cultural identity, and the integrity of ecosystems are at stake. The knowledge in the film is rich and reveals important insights into the effects of climate change on personal and community levels…much needed amidst the climate models and projections. This documentary has the potential to communicate important messages to a wide audience. Highly recommended.

Anonymous's picture

climate changes. What part man play in it is open to debate. We move through the galaxy at 67,000 miles per hour and as such are constantly changing position. Pollution is unquestionably a problem cused by man and needs to be addressed, blaming Co2 and creating a revenue stream for western capitalists in the taxing thereof has an unpleasant odour apart from ther fact that of all the greenhouse gasses Co2 is the one that we really do need as all plantlife depends on it for growth. If we listen to the likes of Al Gore and go for zero emissions we would all have to stop exhaling given that each and every one of us pump more than a ton of the stuff every year. The inuits have a good empiracle knowledge of weather but it's a new world now where everything is changing and like they said, we have to change with it. Sun spots, or the lack of them, are a cause for concern but are rarely if ever discussed. The last time we had a lack of sun spots we had a mini ice age. It's quite possible that the earth has shifted it's axis and there is a new northpole territory yet to be noticed but Co2 and alledged man made global warming can't take the rap for cosmological effects and our passage through the galaxy and around our star. Sometimes it's cooler and other times it's hotter and we can't do a damn thing about it.  

Anonymous's picture

 

 I have been deeply moved by this documentary, those of us who live in cities have no way of truly understanding the affects of our living conditions affect those who live in the Arctic. Over the past few years I've been studying ancient civilisations and the written history left by them. All lived with nature and were guided by the weather & the stars. It seems that changes have occurred many times but now we who have industialised the planet have pushed these changes at a more progressive rate. We are all ONE & have to come together to make ourselves heard. I now live in a caravan on top of a hill overlooking a beautful estuary where I can observe nature on a daily basis. My heart goes out to those of the Inuit. Namaste.

Anonymous's picture

 I am sharing this wonderful documentary with student in my class in Australia but also Aboriginal Communities. Hopefully a better understand of Indigenous people's Knowledge of the Land and Nature will appear with diffusion !

Anonymous's picture

arechildrenarepreciousandgodisrevered,weeducatebylife andwhatisaroundustoteachandlearn-wemuststayaway,fromwhathurtsandknowlifethestarstaughtusthisworldandwearetaughtalso-timeisinthemeasureoftheseasons.weeducatetolearntommorow,thatarechildrenwouldgrowuptobebetterfisherman -andhunterslifecannotbeforgottenalittlelitetoknownotsistership,eat,oatmealhike. foodwoodbowbravehunter. learnitomy,chores myfoodmydwell.mybooksgoodiswhatisright,love

Anonymous's picture

Zacharias Kunuk and Ian Mauro have made a thought provoking film. As a southerner, living in rural Manitoba I was moved by the people depicted in this film and the beauty of the sparse landscape. The Inuit have lived in harmony with the land and sea for many years. Their intimate understanding of their environment should be respected and their advise sought.

 

C. Zebeluk

Anonymous's picture

Thank you for making this film!  I will surely pass it on to as many people in my country (UK) as I can so that they can hear the message from the Inuit people.  qp

Anonymous's picture

I respect the knowledge and wisdom of the Inuit people. But the sound of a fleet of snowmobiles in a silent world is loud.

 

 

Anonymous's picture

Thank you to Qikiqtani Inuit Association for protecting Lancaster Sound.
Minister of Health Leona Aglukkaq should resign for being Harper's dupe and continuing his juvenile agenda of climate change denial and suppressing government reports like "Human Health in a Changing Climate: A Canadian Assessment of Vulnerabilities and Adaptive Capacity, 2008". The Conservative control-freaks continue to keep this report offline, available only on request by mail, one CD at a time, in a plain brown envelope. Put it online now or resign Leona. Why are activists making these CD's to hand out at conferences? To show what morons control our government?
The North will experience the most changes in temperature and environment, yet Harper is preparing it for resource rape. The geological mapping is being done because of lobbying efforts by the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada, the non-profit for billionaires. Take back your territory. Make all mining and drilling contingent on revenues accruing to a Heritage Fund or Adaptation Fund controlled by Nunavut, not the colonizers in Ottawa.

Anonymous's picture

 theres a lot of anthropologists who are open to destroying the boundary between "Science" and "tradtitonal" perspective. its the fact that the people researchers theyre talking about are strictly agents of capital/the state. what else would you expect? second, to say the "nature" is here and "society" (writing, etc) is "over there" like in the midwest hunters comment is ridiculously inaccurate and an old hat duality that most "conservationists of nature" need to get past. it does no good to see the world that way as much as it makes sense to say your mind is separate from your body, etc.

Anonymous's picture

I think you misunderstood my comment. I wasn't looking to divide nature from society and say that one is over here and the other is over there. I was simply saying that some people know when a bear craps in the woods and others do not. Have you ever met someone who has never seen the stars? I have, and they're from big cities like Chicago. As much as it is to say that the mind is a part of the body and the body is a part of the soul, they both are still distinguishable from one another. The fact that the Inuit people are able to make observations such as the sound of the helicopter's blades slicing through the air and effecting the polar bear's sense of hearing, the disorientation that some these bears have as a result, and the effect on the bear's health is an observation few people can note. You can call it an old hat duality or whatever but the fact of the matter is these people hold a wealth of knowledge unknown to most.

Anonymous's picture

The wisdom of the elders is truly humbling and they are so generous with their knowledge. Thank you so much for making this film and letting them tell the story and revealing some astonishing insights.  I live in Alberta but travel to Nunavut and have lived there in the past.  The last trip this December I was dismayed to see there was no ice in the bay in Iqaluit. I will share this with everyone who will listen! Qujannamiik.    

Anonymous's picture

I think this film should be part of the core curriculum for universities that study global issues. I was raised a farmer and a hunter in the upper Midwest of the U.S. and I can truly see where these people are coming from when it comes to talking about their personal anecdotal's of the environment. There is a vast majority of people in this world who are blinded by the lights of the city. They fail to see the stars and they fail to see the environment for what it is simply because their lives are not integrated with nature to make those observations. When man's life is not worked around the elements of nature but within them, his memoirs of life and knowledge are not from the pages of the book, nor, from the shared opinions of his friend, his memoirs and his wealth of knowledge is derived from the seasons, the winds, and the time he has shared being a part of the environment. When a person can tell you the direction of the wind, the two week cold snaps, and the warm ups of each year without the aid of anything but themself, that person has gained a wealth of knowledge not known in most books or studies. I loved that this film addressed the personal knowledge of these individuals and its valuability. The film richly captured the power of common sense and the world's fallacy in not using it. althel07 [at] smumn [dot] edu

Anonymous's picture

Really fantastic documentary that should be spread far and wide. It's extremely important to include the wisdom of the Inuit people as they are closely connected to the land and wildlife. They could surely teach the so-called scientists a thing or two.

Thank you for making this and sharing it. :)

Anonymous's picture

I live in Metro Vancouver and I also noticed the change of wind, it is now coming from east and south when before it was always north and west. 10 years ago the sun would not come into my living room in October, but now it is flooding my house with light. Very unusual. Thank you, what a wonderful documentary. ZD

Anonymous's picture

 Winter winds always come from the SE.  That is the way storms curl into the lower mainland.  Just look at a radar or sat image.  Another example of opionions vs science.  The arctic is melting but winds in Vancouver have no changed.  

philippe.kokong's picture

cela m aide a continuer a proteger cette magnifique mangrove de kokong

 

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