Eskimo Architecture: Dwelling and Structure in the Early by Molly Lee, Gregory A. Reinhardt, Andrew Tooyak Jr.

By Molly Lee, Gregory A. Reinhardt, Andrew Tooyak Jr.

The structure of Eskimo peoples represents a different and profitable technique of dealing with probably the most critical climates humankind can inhabit. the preferred picture of the igloo is yet one of many many constructions tested through specialists Lee and Reinhardt within the first book-length and arctic-wide research of this striking topic.

Lavishly illustrated with ancient and modern images, drawings, and maps, this quantity contains a accomplished survey of the ancient literature on Eskimo structure round the circumpolar north. Lee and Reinhardt then draw a longer comparative research of the geographical, climatic, and ethnographic elements of a powerful breadth of fabric from 4 Arctic subregions: Greenland; the critical Arctic; the Northwest Arctic and Bering Strait; and Southwest Alaska, the Bering Sea, Siberia, and the Gulf of Alaska. In an cutting edge attention of either fabric and cultural features of residing, they and the peoples they describe redefine the very which means of ''architecture.''

While students of the circumpolar north will welcome the meticulous examine of this benchmark examine, its transparent and fluent prose and ample illustrations make Eskimo structure an engrossing learn for nonspecialists attracted to the fabulous dwellings of arctic indigenous peoples.

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Before 1900, when wooden doors came into use in northwest Greenland, air circulation could be further regulated by adjusting stone slabs at either end of the tunnel (Ekblaw 1927–28:167; Steensby 1910:322). Once warmed, the stone walls and floor retained heat. In one instance, the fourteen residents of a house drove up the temperature to 90˚F (Kane 1856:2:113). During historic times, Polar Eskimos added an inner envelope of skin—often worn-out tent covers or clothing—for greater insulation (Ekblaw 1927–28:168–169; Holtved 1967:14).

Billows of warm moist air, emanating from the peephole, served as a further indicator of home and warmth (Ekblaw 1927–28:167–8). The main platform at the rear of Polar Eskimo stone dwellings was the central living space (figs. 11, 15). Each member of the household had a specially designated place on the ledge; women sat at the outside front to tend the lamps, men at the center rear (fig. 15). The Polar Eskimos, like many other Eskimos, customarily slept with their heads toward the front wall of the house.

Intended as temporary shelter, this seems to resemble a shelter that Kane described as “one of those strange little kennels which serve as dormitories when the igloë is crowded” (1856:2:159). 7 SUMMER DWELLINGS TENT IS THE APPROPRIATE TERM FOR VIRTUALLY ALL ESKIMO WARM-SEASON shelters, with only infrequent exceptions. Across the North American Arctic, however, tent frameworks varied so much that their sole consistent attribute was a skin cover (Birket-Smith 1936:130). As discussed in chapter 5, Eskimo tents fall into essentially four categories based on general shape and structure: arched, ridged, conical, or domed.

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