Voices of the Elders: Indigenous Knowledge in Literary and Visual Culture - Renée Hulan
Featured as one of the “leading collaborative practices” by Canadian Art, Zacharias Kunuk and Ian Mauro’s 2010 filmQapirangajuq: Inuit Knowledge and Climate Change combines classic techniques of documentary film making and Inuit storytelling. Interviews with Elders from Igloolik, Iqaluit, Pangnirtung, and other communities are edited together with long shots of the land and water in the Arctic illustrating the stories being told. The ethnographic style of scenes filmed on the land is interspersed with indoor shots of Elders speaking to an interviewer just off camera. In these scenes, the Elders tell that it is no longer possible to predict the weather by looking at the sky, the first thing every Inuit child is taught to do when they get up each morning. As communities create new forms of knowledge, Inuit leaders and artists are working to bring their perspectives to a world still in the grip of climate change denial and skepticism. In keeping with the conference focus on promoting understanding and dialogue between people and generations, this presentation will discuss how alliances to combat the environmental and social consequences of climate change are being forged in literary and visual representations of Indigenous knowledge.