Nushagak Electric Scholarship Essays


Bibliography of ‘Arctic social science’ theses and dissertations – 2006 Aug. 7 – p. 1 of

Bibliography of ‘Arctic Social Science’ Theses and Dissertations

2006 Aug. 7

Big thanks to Birger and Mariekathrine Poppel, Marianne Stenbaek, Navarana Beveridge and Daniel Cuerrier fortheir assistance with translations, and to everyone who has contributed references.This is very much a work in progress, and despite the fact that it contains 1,160 entries this bibliography isundoubtedly missing a great many theses and dissertations – especially those written in languages other thanEnglish. Notification of omissions (and of typos and other errors) would be oh-so-greatly appreciated! Please sendthem to Jack hicks abstracts are those prepared by the authors of the theses and dissertations. The spellings of some words havebeen standardized to facilitate searching.

Abadian, Sousan. (1999) "From wasteland to homeland: Trauma and the renewal of indigenous peoples and theircommunities." Ph.D. Dissertation, Harvard University. 524 pp.

Why is it that the descendants of the original peoples of North America living today on reserves and reservations continue to suffer disproportionately from poverty, poor health, violence, alcohol and substanceabuse? What are effective means of bettering substandard conditions?This study suggests that unresolved or poorly resolved individual and collective trauma is an oftenoverlooked, key causal variable which helps explain present-day conditions in many indigenous communities.Parts I and II explore the ‘trauma thesis’ and suggest that the experience of trauma may profoundly distort individual perceptual filters, values, and behaviour, with damaging social ramifications. Prolonged and extensive trauma can distort institutions and destroy productive social capital, fostering the antithesis of a‘civic culture’ -- a ‘subculture of trauma’ -- with dire implications for economic and political life.Multiple generations of native peoples have experienced individual-level trauma in the context of massivecollective traumatization. This coupling of individual and collective trauma is particularly deadly because,among other things, it cripples the capacity of individuals to heal. Under these circumstances, trauma islikely to be replicated through time and space, and manifest in substandard conditions.In addition to exploring root causes, this study has aimed to provide some insight into possible means of reversing substandard conditions and enhancing well-being. To this end, Part III utilizes psychological theory on the processes of healing from trauma as well as field cases from North American nativecommunities. Part III suggests that a set of interventions employed by increasing numbers of aboriginal communities in various guises, described as ‘culture as treatment,’ are effective means of countering traumatically-induced social pathologies on reserves and reservations today (the ‘culture as treatment thesis’).I conclude with an accounting of what culture as treatment might ideally entail: psychological, cultural and spiritual renewal. Renewal does not mean mere restoration of what was lost, even if that were possible, but may require a degree of adaptation to the changed realities of present-day circumstances.Moreover, I suggest that cultural renewal/psychological healing and economic development are not necessarily at odds with one another. The economic and sociocultural imperatives can go hand-in-hand: theyare compatible and indeed may support one another.

Abel, Kerry M. (1981) "The South Nahanni River Region, NWT (1820-1972): Patterns of socioeconomic transition inthe Canadian north." M.A. Thesis, University of Manitoba (The).———. (1985) "The drum and the cross: An ethnohistorical study of mission work among the Dene, 1858-1902."Ph.D. Dissertation, Queen’s University at Kingston.

While studies of the Indian role in the northern fur trade have become an important part of the historical literature, less attention has been paid to the era of mission work in the Canadian north. It is popularlybelieved that missionaries forced massive cultural changes upon the acquiescent Dene, thus contributing totheir modern problems of dislocation and uncertainty. This study examines the Indian response to the work of the Oblates of Mary Immaculate and the Church Missionary Society in the Mackenzie Valley, and rejects anumber of previously held assumptions and theories, including the argument that these native people turned to Christianity as an alternate solution when their own spiritual systems no longer seemed effective indealing with new problems, and the argument that the Dene were easily and rapidly Christianized becausetheir own religious beliefs were weak and ‘undeveloped.’ The Dene, in fact, exhibited a range of 

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