Dwelling with Power: An ethnography with Teetl'it Gwich'in harvesters
Principal Investigator: Loovers, Jan Peter L. (2)
Licence Number: 13936
Organization: University of Aberdeen
Licensed Year(s): 2006
Issued: Feb 08, 2006

Project Description: This research will build on anthropological work undertaken with the Gwich’in in the first decades of the twentieth century. A continuation of ethnographical work will benefit Gwich’in communities and offer clearer insight into the relations between bush and community life, presenting the opportunity to explore this relationship at different levels, namely household, local, regional, national and international. Furthermore, this research has the potential of playing a role in developing new, or revising existing harvesting policies that take into account Gwich'in knowledge and values, including the rich social field of relationships between humans and non-humans. Such policies could result in more innovative ways to assist harvesters on the land, improve harvesting surveys, and monitor bush economy today and in the future. It is hoped that this collaborative study will produce the training needed for community members to write and publish future ethnographies.

The research will take place both within the community and on the land. The main research method will be 'hanging around' to borrow a phrase from Robert Wishart, which implies a full participation in the daily life and activities of community members. This means both working for and with the community and participating in hunting, fishing, or trapping trips. With the permission of the community, a video-camera and tape-recorder will be used to record interviews and stories as well as daily activities the researcher participates in. Prior to the publication of articles resulting from this doctoral study, the community and the Gwich'in Social and Cultural Institute will be given an opportunity to review the material. Interview data will be shared with and deposited at the Gwich’in Social and Cultural Institute.
The study will be conducted from February 8 to 31 December, 2006 in Fort McPherson and Teetl’it Gwich’in traditional lands.