The Call of Things offers personal, cultural, scientific, and academic perspectives on the polar regions. Using objects culled from both poles, most lent or given by the contributors, it evokes ‘things’ as animate by linking each polar artifact to audio histories and soundscapes. The assemblage of artifacts creates a political ecology of things and meanings, where viewers can listen to the layered events that have shaped polar spaces. Speaking to the variety of interventions that privilege the human over the beyond-human spaces and species, many voices offer alternative possibilities for stewardship and sustainability.

Contributors

Richard Alley, Glaciologist, Penn State University. Alley testified in 1999 before the US Senate and House Committee of Science on climate change. He has participated in coring projects in Antarctica and Greenland. He hosted a special PBS program on climate change, entitled EARTH: The Operators’ Manual.

Eileen Crist, Associate Professor, Virginia Tech. Author of many books including Keeping the Wild: Against the Domestication of Earth and Abundant Earth: Toward an Ecological Civilization.

Klaus Dodds, Professor, University of London. His research interests include geopolitics and security, media/popular culture, ice studies and the international governance of the Antarctic and the Arctic. Author of several books including Ice: Nature and CultureResearch Companion on the Politics of the Antarctic; Scramble for the Poles? The Contemporary Geopolitics of the Arctic and Antarctic; and The Arctic: What Everyone Needs to Know (OUP 2019). 

Okalik Eegeesiak, Former Chair of Inuit Circumpolar Council, board member of Arctic Children and Youth Foundation, President of the regional Qikiqtani Inuit Association (QIA), representing approximately 14,000 Inuit across 13 communities of the Qikiqtani Region of Nunavut.

Matt Farish, Professor, University of Toronto. Author of The Contours of America’s Cold War. His research interest include relationships between militarization and geographical knowledge in the twentieth-century United States.

Ari Friedlaender, Ecologist, University of California Santa Cruz. Member of the Long-Term Ecological Research Program at Palmer Station, Antarctica, whose aim is to better understand the ecological roles of cetaceans in a rapidly changing climate.

Ivalo Frank, Greenlandic Filmmaker, director of Echoes, she works as an artist, film and festival Director. She has won many awards including the Honorable Mention Award, Los Angeles International Film Festival and Best Documentary Award, London Underground Film Festival.

Gibbie Fraser, Whaler from the Shetland Islands, worked on a whaling ship in Antarctica from 1958-1963; Chairman of Shetland ex-Whalers Association.

Glaciers, sounds of a glacier melting, courtesy of Dr. Grant Deane, Research Oceanographer, University of San Diego, Scripps Institution of Oceanography.

Ruby Katsak, resident of Pond Inlet, Baffin Island, High Canadian Arctic.

Kitty Komangapik, resident of Pond Inlet, Baffin Island, High Canadian Arctic.

Hugh Kroetsch, Former engineer, 1950-1959, Hudson’s Bay Company (HBC). One of the last fur traders working at HBC. Sailed the Northwest Passage delivering supplies to local communities; documenting his journeys.

Marquise Lepage, Quebecois Filmmaker, director of Martha of the North, a film about the relocation of Inuit families to the High Arctic in the 1950s by the Canadian Government, including Martha Flaherty's family, from Inukjuak (northern Quebec). Co-founder, with Martha Flaherty, of archival site featuring short films, interviews and photos of this exile - iqqaumavara.com.

Anne Michaels, Poet and Author. Recipient of Orange Prize, the Guardian Fiction Prize, the Lannan Award for Fiction, the Commonwealth Poetry Prize for the Americas, the Guggenheim Fellowship and the Griffin Poetry Prize. Her novel, Fugitive Pieces, was adapted as a feature film.

Jessica O’Reilly, Professor, Indiana University. Author of The Technocratic Antarctic: An Ethnography of Scientific Expertise and Environmental Governance.

Penguins

Aaju Peter, Lawyer and Inuit activist. Defender of the rights of Canada’s northern Indigenous people, including the EU ban on seal products. Featured in the documentary Angry Inuk, by Alethea Arnaquq-Baril.

Seals

Lisa Speer, Marine Scientist, Director of Oceans Program at Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). Oversees NRDC’s effort to preserve and protect the world’s oceans. Testified before Congress and the United Nations on a variety of high-seas and Arctic-management issues.

Ursula Rack, Professor, University of Canterbury. Research interests include polar history including the political, social and economic factors which influenced the expeditions.

Andrew Stuhl, Professor, Bucknell University. Author of Unfeezing the Arctic: Science, Colonialism, and the Transformation of Inuit Land. Visiting Fulbright Research Chair, Carleton University.  

Volcanoes

Whales, (sounds courtesy of ©Thomas R. Kieckhefer, and DOSITS — Discovery of Sound in the Sea, University of Rhode Island and Inner Space Center.

Trevor Williams, Research Scientist at International Ocean Discovery Program, Texas A&M University. His research interests include Antarctic climate and ice history, ocean drilling, warm climates of the Cretaceous and Eocene, and long-term climate change.

Julianne Yip, Non-Anthropocentric Anthropologist, Berggruen Fellow at Boston University. Her research interests include the study of scientists who study sea ice; and how (sea) ice gives rise to its own order of things.

Without the contributors’ collaboration, this work would not be possible. I am grateful to all of the contributors and to the following people: Lyndsie Bourgon, Nancy Doubleday, Aileen Hope, Scott Johnson, Frederick Kroetsch, Tracy Lee, Nadine Medawar, Rosenclaire, Rosalie Tellier, Bruno Tremblay.