The Arctic is sometimes portrayed as 'species-poor' region - an idea that misrepresents the complexity of the relations that one finds here. In this project we will focus upon the relations between human-persons, rangifer (reindeer and caribou), canines (dogs), and fish (salmon and white fish).
Biologists and ethnographers have recognized these three sets of animals as 'key' species across the North, and much attention has been spent on which species was domesticated 'first' in time, but there has been little work on how they negotiate their co-existence.
In our fieldwork we will look at these species in an active mood studying how they become 'wild' or are brought into domestication today. This is particularly relevant to the re-establishment of reindeer husbandry across many spaces of the former Soviet Union as with the creation/domestication of domestic breeds of fish.
Dogs are perhaps the most well-known domestic species thought to be the first animal ever domesticated and the focus of much popular and scientific literature today. Ethnographically, as in genetic studies, they have been taken for granted. The project therefore will perform fundamental work on documenting dog breeds and how dogs co-produce domestic relations together with human persons.