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Distributed for Purich Publishing

Making a Living

Place, Food, and Economy in an Inuit Community

Until recently, most residents of Puvirnituq, an Inuit settlement in Northern Quebec, made their living off the land. Successful hunting, fishing, trapping and gathering, so vital to people’s survival, were underpinned by the expectation that food should be shared. As the Inuit moved into – both forced and voluntary – they have had to incorporate the workings of a monetized economy into their own notions of how to operate as a society. Quoting local residents and drawing upon academic literature, the author documents the experiences of an Inuit community as they wrestle with how to accommodate their belief in a sharing economy with the demands of market forces.

232 pages

Table of Contents

1: Placing Economics: Telling Stories About Food and Making a Living


Welcome to Puvirnituq



Issues of Economics

The Place of Economy and the Economy of Place

2: The Place of Country Foods / Country Foods in Place


Seasons, Weather, Time, and Country Foods

Common Property and Country Foods

Animal Relations and Country Foods

The Social Relations of Country Foods

Memory, Home, and Country Foods

Knowledge, Place, and Country Foods

Health and Country Foods

Politics and Country Foods

Economics and Country Foods

3: The Political Economy of Nunavik and the Commoditization of Country Foods

Government Approaches to Economic Development in the Canadian North

The Political Economy of Nunavik

The Commoditization of Country Foods among Inuit: An Overview

Forms of Commoditization in Nunavik

4: Sold Down the River: The Business of Country Foods in Puvirnituq

History, Economy, and Society

The Commoditization of Country Foods in Puvirnituq

5: “If You Want to Buy, Ill Sell it to You. If Youre Asking for it, Ill Give it to You: Change and Continuity

Selling off the Commons: Evolving Systems of Belief and Behaviour

Social Processes: Sharing, Community, and Identity

Money and Processes of Valuation

Scaling the Boundaries of Place

The Commoditization of Country Foods: Scale, Value, Identities, Community, and Futures

Epilogue: Closing the Circle?


1. Country Foods Eaten in Puvurnituq

2. Employment, Population, and Earning Statistics for Puvirnituq

3. Comparative List o

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