Qaggiq (Gathering Place) (Lieu de Rassemblement)

ISUMA, Norman Cohn and Zacharias Kunuk

1989, 58:00 minutes, colour, Inuktitut with English or French subtitles


Qaggiq is about home life in the Arctic during the 1930s. Improvised by Igloolik community members under the direction of Zacharias Kunuk, the script revolves around a native man in love with a local woman. When he asks for her hand in marriage, her father refuses, despite protests by the woman's mother. Calling for assistance in the spirit world and his own resources during the annual Qaggiq games in the communal igloo, the youth tries to reverse her father's opinion. The video was produced with the assistance of the Igloolik community.

In making
Qaggiq, great care was taken to achieve historical accuracy: the characters wear only handmade caribou-skin clothing, use only traditional tools and implements, and speak pure Inuktituk. The tape's plot and subplot reflect the social codes of the era.

Soixante-sept ans après Nanook of the North de Flaherty, un cinéaste Inuk donne son interprétation de la vie des Inuits du début du siècle. A la fin de l'hiver, dans les années trente, un camp Inuit. Quatre familles construisent un qaggiq, un grand Igloo communautaire, pour célébrer l'arrivée du printemps avec des jeux, des chants, des danses.

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