Knud Rasmussen on the Copper Eskimos Book Review

Knud Rasmussen on the Copper Eskimos
A review of Knud Rasmussen's 1932 book "Intellectual Culture of the Copper Eskimos".
# 153998 | 3,762 words | 4 sources | 2014 | CA
Published by on Aug 27, 2014 in Anthropology (Cultural) , Ethnic Studies (North American)

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From the Paper:

"This review of Knud Rasmussen's 1932 book, Intellectual Culture of the Copper Eskimos,begins by providing an overview of the book's twelve chapters. It then goes on to examine the possible anthropological question that Rasmussen,may have been seeking to answer through his expedition to Canada's far north. Rasmussen does not explicitly state in his book that there was a specific question or hypothesis underlying his expedition. However, indications in the text suggest that he was seeking to dispel the myth that was widespread at the time that the "Eskimos" (as the Inuit were then known) were lying, thieving, murderous savages. The underlying purpose of the book (as indicated in the title) appears to be to demonstrate that the "Copper Eskimos" were highly cultured, congenial, civilized, and intellectually advanced. Rasmussen succeeds admirably in presenting a highly realistic, balanced account of the "Copper Eskimos" and he provides valuable insights into their culture and thought. The review goes on to examine in closer detail two theoretical issues that arise incidentally in the book, namely, cultural diffusion between the Inuitof Canada and Greenland, and the issue of the origin of "blond Eskimos." The review concludes by pointing out that Rasmussen's book makes an invaluable contribution to ethnography by preserving in written form (and translating into English) some of the oral Inuit folklore."

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