The politics of belonging in the Indigenous North
chapterposted on 23.10.2017 by Michael Skey
Division of a book, which in a scholarly context usually treats a part of a larger subject in a stand-alone manner.
This chapter focuses on the politics of belonging. In the case of the Sami, it shows how a sense of belonging is expressed in relation to particular practices, material objects, temporal rhythms, forms of language and places. The language became the first 'official' marker of Sami culture after the ruling of the Committee for Sami Affairs in 1952. The 'recognition' comes from being involved in more informal networks or social relations as individuals are defined by their 'ties to recognised Sami families'. At the national level, legislation was enacted to recognise the Sami's unique culture and ancestry and their status as an Indigenous people who have the right to special protection. In discussing Nils-Aslak Valkeapaa's connections with Indigenous groups in North America, it is argued that a shared sense of belonging comes not only through political activism but also through 'the feelings that the similarity of life across the Arctic arouses,' including the environment, material objects and cultural practices.
- Social Sciences
- Communication, Media, Social and Policy Studies