The Ulukhaktok Literacy Research Project

The Ulukhaktok Literacy Research Project

The Ulukhaktok Literacy Research Project

Date posted: June 19, 2014

The Ulukhaktok Literacy Research Project was a joint community-based research project of the NWT Literacy Council, the Inuvialuit Cultural Resource Centre, the Faculty of Education at the University of Lethbridge, and the community of Ulukhaktok. It examined the living literacies of Ulukhaktok, the traditional ways of sharing memory and meaning, information and knowledge.

Kangiryuarmiut are the long distance walkers. Today, they live in Ulukhaktok (formerly Holman), Northwest Territories, on the west coast of Victoria Island. This project chronicled their traditional travels – the long distance walk the Kangiryuarmiut took each year, following the seasons. It looked at what “literacy” meant to the Kangiryuarmiut, and what it means today. What were the literacies of the long distance walkers, and how and where were they learned? And are these living literacies still being learned and used today?

The results are available in Pihuaqtiuyugut: We are the Long Distance Walkers. Read the full report here.

Research findings include:

  • Kangiryuarmiut lived on the land, following the seasons.
  • Kangiryuarmiut had many traditional literacies.
  • Kangiryuarmiut learned skills and knowledge on the land, through attention and practice.
  • Kangiryuarmiut literacies are complex.
  • Becoming literate in traditional ways makes a person Kangiryuarmiut.

As a way of sharing with the community the research findings, the research team helped create a museum exhibit that used the story of the long distance walk to describe traditional literacies.

For more information on this project, visit the NWT Literacy Council website.

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