Inuits

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Inuit History and Heritage
Our 5000 Year Heritage .................................................................................................................... 2 Unity of Culture and Language ......................................................................................................... 3 The Origin of Our Culture................................................................................................................. 4 Our Earliest History........................................................................................................................... 5 Our Ancestors .................................................................................................................................... 8 Europeans Discover Our Land and Culture.................................................................................... 10 Meeting of Two Worlds .................................................................................................................... 11 Inuit Today ....................................................................................................................................... 14 The Inuit Regions............................................................................................................................ 16 Inuvialuit region........................................................................................................................... 16 Nunavut........................................................................................................................................ 16 Nunavik .........................................................................................................................................17 Nunatsiavut ...................................................................................................................................17

Inuit Tapiriit Kanatami www.itk.ca

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Our 5000 Year Heritage
For 5,000 years, thepeople and culture known throughout the world as Inuit have occupied the vast territory stretching from the shores of the Chukchi Peninsula of Russia, east across Alaska and Canada, to the southeastern coast of Greenland. It is here, based on our ability to utilize the physical environment and living resources of this geographic region known as the Arctic, where our culture developed and our historyunfolded. Inuit are an original people of the land now known as Canada, and our history represents an important and fascinating story. It is not just a story about an early chapter of Canadian history. Indeed it is an epic tale in the history of human settlement and the endurance of culture. Each chapter of our story provides valuable lessons and insights about issues that matter to cultureseverywhere. Our history is about people and their relationship to the environment and to each other; about dealing with change as well as the causes and consequences of change forced on us through colonialism; and about how we have reestablished control over our cultural, economic and political destiny through land claims and self government. Above all, the story of Inuit is about how we as a cultureare able to live in balance with the natural world. This is a story that we must begin to tell for ourselves. Unfortunately until now, most of the research on our culture and history has been done by individuals who come from outside our culture. Since the information that these individuals collected was seldom made available to us, the image held by much of the outside world about who we are isusually someone else's creation, not ours. It will take time to change this situation and we as Inuit are certainly prepared to work cooperatively with those who have devoted their professional lives to the study of our culture. In the meantime we will reinterpret the information gathered by others to help us speak about ourselves. This website represents an important step in that direction as it...
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