NTI releases interviews on Nunavut land claims negotiations
"This project presents very valuable historical material"
Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. launched its Nunavut Land Claims Agreement Oral History Project on the NTI website Sept. 19.
The project features interviews with several people who were involved in various aspects of the NLCA negotiations over several decades, as well as a photographic history of the last several years.
“This project presents very valuable historical material and provides detailed firsthand information about a turning point in Canadian history. This tells the story of how Nunavut came to be, and I am honoured to launch this today,” said NTI president Cathy Towtongie in an NTI news release.
Until very recently, Inuit knowledge and history was retained and passed on solely through the oral tradition of storytelling, the release said.
“There is a strong movement now underway to capture oral knowledge and record historical information and wisdom,” NTI said.
The NTI board of directors committed money to record interviews with NLCA negotiators and then approached the Government of Nunavut for more money to fund the project, NTI said.
These funds were then made available to people and organizations to record and transcribe the oral history of the development, negotiations and formation of the NLCA, NTI said.
The NLCA oral history project is available in Inuktitut, Inuinnaqtun and English.
Those interviewed include: James Eetoolook, Thomas Suluk, Stephen Kakfwi, Rhoda Karetak, Raymond Ningeocheak, Ollie Ittinuar, Mike Shouldice, Michael Kusugak, Louis Taparti, Jr., James Wah-Shee, Jack Kupeuna, Sr., Helen Maksagak, Emily Angulalik, Elizabeth Kusugak, Charlie Evalik, Catherine Pilakapsi, Bobby Kadlun, Bob Gamble, Bernadette Dean and Mary Rose Angoshadluk.
NTI said it plans to launch a project to name the people in its photographs in the near future and to present “the actual recorded interviews” collected during the project.