Built Environments and Subsistence in Arctic Communities: Examples from Ethnographic Research in the Bering Strait

January 24, 2013 • Filed under: News — melanie.rohr

Join us for this week’s seminar, Friday, January 25, 2013, as Sveta Yamin-Pasternak documents the life of Arctic communities in the Bering Strait in terms of housing, food preservation and water infrastructure.

Friday Seminar Series

  • What: Built Environments and Subsistence in Arctic Communities: Examples from Ethnographic Research in the Bering Strait
  • Who: Sveta Yamin-Pasternak
  • When: 3:30-4:30 p.m. Friday, Jan. 25
  • Where: 531 Duckering

Preserving subsistence products by the methods of fermentation has been central to livelihoods in the Arctic. Unlike the built environments of the past, the contemporary construction materials are poorly adapted to assist the proper aging of food and other harvested materials. Additionally, while the indigenous methods of fermentation prescribe avoidance of water, the contemporary living aesthetic requires access to water delivery infrastructure. This discussion will share perspectives of local residents, documented in the course of ethnographic research in the Bering Strait, and invites ideas for multi-disciplinary explorations of the relationships between contemporary housing, municipal water infrastructure, material culture, and cuisine.

A village house and extended structures in a Chukotkan village, Russia.

Image Above: A village house and extended structures in a Chukotkan village, Russia.

(Image by Sveta Yamin-Pasternak)