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What the project is about 

Arctic Cultures

The project is undertaken by the Scott Polar Research Institute at the University of Cambridge. It investigates the construction of the Arctic that emerged from the exploration of the region by Europeans and North Americans and their contacts with indigenous people from the middle of the sixteenth century.


Particular texts, cartographic representations and objects were collected and returned to sites like London, Copenhagen, Berlin and Philadelphia. The construction of the Arctic thereby became entwined with the growth of colonial museum cultures and, indeed, western modernity.

Project goal

This project aims to delineate the networks and collecting cultures involved in this creation of Arctic Cultures. It aspires to a new understanding of the consequences of colonial representations and decolonial processes for debates about the Circumpolar Arctic today.


North Greenland in JulyThe Polar Museum at the Scott Polar Research Institute, CambridgeStreet signs in Iqaluit, Nunavut

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