The Inuit parka : a preliminary study


Driscoll, Bernadette




Historically, ethnographers have perceived the Inuit parka as an ingenious but exclusively utilitarian response to the severe climate of the Arctic. Although preliminary in its nature, this thesis examines the parka as an essential and vital element of Inuit intellectual, spiritual and material culture. It presents the woman's parka as both a functional and symbolic reference to maternity; the man's parka as an essential tool of the hunt which assists the hunter on both an actual and symbolic level in the pursuit of the animal; and the clothing of children as a means of acquainting the young with their prospective roles and future responsibilities within Inuit society.

This survey of museum collections includes a limited sample of ceremonial costume, particularly the vestments of the shaman, which offer clues to deciphering formal design elements of the parka and to revealing certain prehistoric references embodied in the outward appearance and actual construction of the parka.


Inuit -- Costume




Carleton University

Thesis Degree Name: 

Master of Arts: 

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Thesis Degree Discipline: 

Canadian Studies

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Theses and Dissertations

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