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Do Glaciers Listen?: Local Knowledge, Colonial Encounters, and Social Imagination
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Do Glaciers Listen?: Local Knowledge, Colonial Encounters, and Social Imagination

4.05  ·  Rating Details ·  59 Ratings  ·  8 Reviews
The glaciers creep

Like snakes that watch their prey, from their far fountains,

Slow rolling on.

- Percy Shelley, "Mont Blanc," 1816

Glaciers in America's far northwest figure prominently in indigenous oral traditions, early travelers' journals, and the work of geophysical scientists. By following such stories across three centuries, this book explores local knowledge, colonia
Paperback, 312 pages
Published October 5th 2005 by University of Washington Press (first published January 1st 2005)
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Jul 23, 2009 Zachary rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book is very well researched, excellently objective, engaging, captivating, wholly original, and honestly exciting. In this book the author seeks to examine various aspects of history from the perspective Southeast Alaskan and northern British Columbian glaciers and their interaction with man and the environment. The bulk of the study focuses on the Little Ice Age period and after, roughly 1500-1900 and uses historical accounts from Euro-explorers and mostly Tlingit Native American Indians. ...more
Jan 29, 2010 Nicole rated it really liked it
This book was a fascinating look at conflicting cultural views of the landscape at the borders of BC, the Yukon, and Alaska. It provided a lot of background information about the groups and individuals who ended up there and many sources for further reading. There were a few points at which it seemed a bit too much like a textbook, but for the most part it was an enjoyable read about an interesting topic.
Apr 24, 2008 Tara rated it really liked it
Shelves: linguistics
This book put a different spin on linguistics than books I've read previously. It read more like a history book than a linguistic analysis, which was great. The author tried to blend Athapaskan and Tlingit oral narratives with European and Euro-American written records of the late Little Ice Age, which lasted roughly from 1500 to 1900 in northwestern North America. Her intent was to compare different cultural views of glaciers and how both cultures dealt with encountering each other in a ...more
Aug 21, 2013 Dagezi rated it liked it
My undergrads hated this -- they thought it rambling and in need of tighter editorial control. I wanted to like it more than I did, though I did like it more than they did. I imagine Cruikshank dictating the book in a small tape recorder and then reproducing that text unedited. It reads in places like you're having a conversation with someone who is very smart, works on cool stuff, but is having an off day or trying to cover up having not done the reading (or having read it a while ago and ...more
Mar 15, 2016 Rallie rated it it was amazing
So far, this is my favorite book I've read all year. As an ethnographic text it weaves together ideas of culture, space, and time to put into conversation "modern scientific" knowledge of the environment and "traditional local" knowledges through the lens of the colonial encounter and postcolonialism. I highly recommend this book to anyone interested in indigenous knowledges and oral traditions and/or environmentalism. It's well-written and well organized, and presents a strong argument that our ...more
Mar 07, 2012 Stephanie rated it it was ok
Shelves: academic
While well written and informative, this book tried to bring to many concepts under its control rather than sticking to a central main point that the reader could follow throughout- just looking through different reviews shows how different readers assumed the author was trying to highlight very different points, all confused on which the main point really was and which was just filler.
Bill Brydon
May 02, 2015 Bill Brydon rated it it was amazing
Shelves: canadaintheworld
Julie Cruikshank details the entanglements of local and global in ways that reveal “how porous knowledge practices are”. She explains how many terms Western-educated scholars assume are self-explanatory are in fact highly contested. Her examples include “land,” “hunting” “resources,” and “property”.
Cruickshank examines how environmental change and cross-cultural encounters have been framed through oral history narrative in aboriginal communities of northern British Columbia.
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