The Steel Dog in the Canadian Arctic: A Historical Case Study of Technological Change

Persistent Link:
http://hdl.handle.net/10150/110031
Title:
The Steel Dog in the Canadian Arctic: A Historical Case Study of Technological Change
Author:
Pavri, Eric Hoshang
Affiliation:
University of Arizona
Citation:
Arizona Anthropologist 16:73-103. © 2005 Arizona Anthropologist
Publisher:
University of Arizona, Department of Anthropology
Journal:
Arizona Anthropologist
Issue Date:
2005
URI:
http://hdl.handle.net/10150/110031
Abstract:
During the "Snowmobile Revolution" of the late 1960s, the snowmobile largely supplanted the dog team as the main form of transport in the Canadian Arctic. This essay draws from historical and ethnograpphic sources to investigate practical advantages and disadvantages to adoption of the new technology, and then considers whether this episode of rapid technological change resulted in "cultural loss" in Arctic communities. While it is clear that widespread adoption of the snowmobile technological complex (machines, fuel, tools, skills, knowledge) caused significant changes in life in the Far North, it also appears that the meanings and values associated with traditional subsistence hunting were generally not lost, and in some cases were reinforced during this period of technological transition. Finally, drawing on various academic traditions such as the Social Construction of Technology school, ecological models of convergent cycles, postmodern critiques of modernization and development, and the appropriate technology movement, the essay then questions simplistic notions of cultural loss by considering the common evolution of culture and technology.
Type:
Article
Language:
en_US
ISSN:
1062-1601

Full metadata record

DC FieldValue Language
dc.contributor.authorPavri, Eric Hoshangen_US
dc.date.accessioned2010-08-21T01:44:31Z-
dc.date.available2010-08-21T01:44:31Z-
dc.date.issued2005-
dc.identifier.citationArizona Anthropologist 16:73-103. © 2005 Arizona Anthropologisten_US
dc.identifier.issn1062-1601-
dc.identifier.urihttp://hdl.handle.net/10150/110031-
dc.description.abstractDuring the "Snowmobile Revolution" of the late 1960s, the snowmobile largely supplanted the dog team as the main form of transport in the Canadian Arctic. This essay draws from historical and ethnograpphic sources to investigate practical advantages and disadvantages to adoption of the new technology, and then considers whether this episode of rapid technological change resulted in "cultural loss" in Arctic communities. While it is clear that widespread adoption of the snowmobile technological complex (machines, fuel, tools, skills, knowledge) caused significant changes in life in the Far North, it also appears that the meanings and values associated with traditional subsistence hunting were generally not lost, and in some cases were reinforced during this period of technological transition. Finally, drawing on various academic traditions such as the Social Construction of Technology school, ecological models of convergent cycles, postmodern critiques of modernization and development, and the appropriate technology movement, the essay then questions simplistic notions of cultural loss by considering the common evolution of culture and technology.en_US
dc.language.isoen_USen_US
dc.publisherUniversity of Arizona, Department of Anthropologyen_US
dc.titleThe Steel Dog in the Canadian Arctic: A Historical Case Study of Technological Changeen_US
dc.typeArticleen_US
dc.contributor.departmentUniversity of Arizonaen_US
dc.identifier.journalArizona Anthropologisten_US
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