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Research and talks seminars in Polar Social Science and Humanities 2007/8

Research and talks seminars in Polar Social Science and Humanities 2007/8

'Finding Franklin': film and discussion with Professor Ian MacLaren (University of Alberta)

2-4pm, Monday 19 May 2008
SPRI Lecture Theatre

Hosted by the Circumpolar History and Public Policy group (CHiPP).

There will be a screening of this 2005 documentary, on which Professor MacLaren acted as a consultant, followed by a discussion.

Two years in the making, this documentary tells the extraordinary story of a lost arctic expedition. In 1845, Sir John Franklin set out to find a route to Asia through the arctic - the fabled Northwest Passage. The entire expedition vanished, something that had never happened before. Finding Franklin recounts a desperate tale of a ferocious struggle against death and the equally desperate struggle to find out what went wrong.

Professor MacLaren teaches in both the Departments of English and History & Classics at the University of Alberta. His research and teaching interests normally pertain to the interdisciplinary study of early Canada, and focus on the literature and art of exploration and travel, poetry, and colonial studies, generally. He has edited several travellers' narratives about the Arctic, including The Ladies, the Gwich'in, and the Rat (with Lisa LaFramboise; 1998), and Arctic Artist: The Journal and Paintings of George Back, Midshipman with Franklin 1819-1822 (with Stuart Houston; 1984). He has also published many articles about Arctic explorers and their narratives over his thirty-year career. His most recent work is concerned with the visual and textual construction of wilderness in Canadian national parks.

Inscribing the Arctic: The Franklin Relics and the Arctic Archive

Dr. Adriana Craciun, Reader in Literature and Theory at Birkbeck College in London
Thursday 8th May 2008, at 12pm, Seminar Room, Department of Geography

Adriana Craciun is Reader in Literature and Theory at Birkbeck, University of London. She is the author of Fatal Women of Romanticism (Cambridge, 2003) and British Women Writers and the French Revolution: Citizens of the World (Palgrave, 2005). She is completing a new book titled Northwest Passages: Authorship, Exploration, Disaster, from which her talk on "Inscribing the Arctic" is taken. The book considers the relationship of print culture, manuscript circulation and inscription on Arctic exploration, from the seventeenth through the nineteenth centuries. Her essays from Northwest Passages are forthcoming in PMLA and Interventions: International Journal of Postcolonial Studies.

Talk by Professor Hugh Beach

11am, Thursday 11 October 2007, SPRI Seminar Room

Hugh is Professor at the Department of Anthropology, University of Uppsala, Sweden and is Editor of the journal Nomadic Peoples.

His talk will discuss:

  • Who is a Saami?
  • Why are we essentialist about animals and relationist about humans?