New Handbook featuring REXSAC researchers Nuttall and Avango

New Handbook featuring REXSAC researchers Nuttall and Avango

The Routledge Handbook of the Polar Regions is a guide to the Arctic and the Antarctic through research in the physical and natural sciences and the social sciences and humanities.

REXSAC researcher and lead editor of the handbook, Mark Nuttall, alongside REXSAC researcher, Dag Avango, join forces with 36 other leading researchers and voices in polar research, policy and practice.

This handbook aims to approach and understand the Polar Regions as places that are at the forefront of global conversations about some of the most pressing contemporary issues and research questions of our age.

The handbook provides an easy access to key items of scholarly literature and material otherwise inaccessible or scattered throughout a variety of specialist journals and books. A unique one-stop research resource for researchers and policymakers with an interest in the Arctic and Antarctic, it is also a comprehensive reference work for graduate and advanced undergraduate students.

Read the abstract from chapter 9 on Historical Sites and Heritage in the Polar Regions, Dag Avango:

The Polar Regions of today are marked by the imprints from thousands of years of human activities, from the first peoples who settled there in the distant past to those who arrived more recently – e.g. explorers, industrialists, militaries, scientists. This chapter gives an overview of the material historical remains of past human activities in the Arctic and Antarctic and explains under which circumstances they have been recognized as cultural heritage sites, i.e. remains which different actors for various reasons have defined, protected and managed as such. The chapter is divided into two main sections, the first presenting an overview of the archaeological record in the Arctic from 20 000 BCE until the 20thcentury, and in the Antarctic (including the Sub-Antarctic) from the 18thcentury until present days. The second section discusses how stakeholders in the Polar Regions have dealt with these archaeological sites. Under which circumstances do historical remains in the Polar Regions become heritage and why?

The chapter shows that there is a wide variety of actors who work to protect historical remains as heritage and for different reasons – e.g. archaeologists and historians using them as sources for explaining historical change, state authorities for diversifying local economies and supporting local identity and tourism companies using them for creating new destinations. Thus the material legacies of the past in the polar areas should not only be understood as environmental problems but also as a potential resource for building sustainable futures.

And the link to the handbook here. 




“The volume has a wealth of information on both polar regions, with topics from detailed science to history and the humanities – a wide-ranging and well-balanced compilation.”Professor Julian Dowdeswell, Director of the Scott Polar Research Institute, University of Cambridge, UK