New book examines shamanism and Christianity in Canada’s eastern Arctic

The Iqaluit historian and linguist, Kenn Harper, reads from his fourth collection of In Those Days historical writings at a book launch Nov. 13 inside The Atelier at St. Paul’s University in Ottawa. The collection, taken from his Taissumani column in Nunatsiaq News, is titled Shamans, Spirits, and Faith in the Inuit North and contains historical tales related to shamanism and the arrival of Christianity in the Arctic. It’s published by Inhabit Media and can be ordered from (Photo by Jim Bell)

By John Thompson

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(5) Comments:

  1. Posted by Friedrich Nietzsche on

    I’ve always found it so sad to see so many Inuit enslaved and mentally colonized by Christianity.

    • Posted by I Died of an STI on

      Nonsense. On the whole the impact has been positive.

      You can’t judge an entire worldview by a few bad examples. By that logic all atheists are authoritarian and have a complete disregard for human life like those historic leaders of secular regimes.

      • Posted by Friedrich Nietzsche on

        Christianity has a long and successful (by it’s own standards) history of subverting what it would call pagan cultures. It does so by offering a combination of material security with mental enslavement. Over the centuries it has become quite simply brilliant at these tactics which can be seen through its widespread proliferation. Unfortunately for Inuit this has meant the replacement of their traditional ancient cosmology with one from a foreign invader. It led to oppression and the undermining of inuit music, dance, language and art. Still, you say Christianity has lead to an overall benefit. Please, will you tell us how?

        • Posted by Reader on

          Thank you for your comment. Some Inuit share your sentiments. Perhaps I have run into you in some of my research.

  2. Posted by Piitaqanngi on

    These christian folk are still keeping us from fully realising our true selves. If an Inuk preaches to you next time about Christianity ask him or her if he or she is proud about Inuit and his or her heritage.

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