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November, 2011 – Churchill

November 21, 2011

In November 2011, Managing Director of the Canadian Studies Center Nadine Fabbi and American Indian Studies faculty Daniel Hart and Luana Ross participated in a field course to Churchill, Manitoba, hosted by the Great Bear Foundation, Montana. The field course, called “Sharing Habitat with Polar Bears,” focused on how the community of Churchill responds to living with polar bears and how Indigenous peoples in Canada have historically coexisted with bears. “Each year, in mid- to late October, polar bears move to the Cape Churchill area on the west coast of Hudson Bay … The bears come and they wait, walking up and down the coast, watching the sea, and sniffing the winds, sleeping in kelp beds, or play-fighting until they can go out onto the ice. In early to mid-November, the ice shelf usually starts to form, and the bears move onto the ice and begin to hunt … In recent years, the ice season has been getting shorter, leaving the bears less time to hunt ringed seals” (from the Great Bear Foundation website). During the field course, Nadine delivered a lecture called “Inuit Diplomacies and International Relations in the Arctic: Policy and Spatial Activism” to the field course participants and others at the Churchill Northern Studies Centre.