Thursday, July 31, 2008

The Whale Hunt

"The Whale Hunt" is a compelling piece of storytelling, primarily visual and not for the squeamish. Jonathan Harris has created here a beautiful and honest work of art based on an Inuit whale hunt. I ran across it researching aboriginal whaling in the context of contemporary seasteading, looking for the Bequia whalers and their small boats. More on them later. While I am definitely opposed to industrial whaling, especially when it involves endangered species, I feel that the Aboriginal Whaling Act allows indigenous peoples to preserve their heritage and traditions, and thus is an act of conservation. Yes it's grisly, but no more so than the daily slaughter most of us participate in, if indirectly. Maybe less so. Most native peoples offer up a prayer to the sacrificing animal. Please post comments. And visit the website for (lots) more. Note that the middle photograph includes a umiak, the skin on frame open boat of the Inuit.

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