Contested Collections Ep8


In today’s episode, we will be looking at some objects from our North American Collection including a dolphin jawbone and seal claw bound with string. These items were produced by the Inupiat- a name meaning ‘real people’ who inhabited the Northwest area of Alaska and the Behring Straits. Inupiat objects were decorated with scenes of everyday life which was a means by which they were able to record aspects of their language, as they had no written form before western explorers reached Alaska. Many objects from the Inupiat have actually been made from animal parts, as the two items that we are looking at today have and it is a general belief held by the people of the Arctic, that killing an animal isn’t a person’s right, it is something that is earned, and that hunting is perceived as the giving and receiving of gifts.


Wed 15 Sep 2021 - Thu 14 Oct 2021

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