Mountain Skyline

Photo of an Artic Fox

Arctic Fox (Photo by Kira Van Deusen)

Qujannamik – Thanks!


We would like to thank the elders who generously told us the story. They live in many Nunavut communities and generously gave their permission for us to use their words in film and in storytelling performance and writing. Unfortunately some of them are no longer with us now. This site it dedicated to the memory of those who are gone and to the continued good health of those who are still among us.

Rankin Inlet
Mariano Aupilardjuk, Elisapee Karlik, Bernadette Okpik Patterk, Madeleine Makkigaq, Ollie Ittinuaq

Repulse Bay
Felix Kopak, Peter Katorkra

Henry Isluanik, Leo Ahmak, Peter Suvaksiuq, Phillip Kijusiutnerk,

Baker Lake
Samson Quinangnaq Elizabeth Tunniq, Simon Tookoome, Janet Uqajuittuq Kigusiuq

Chesterfield Inlet
Leo Nimialik, Joe Issaluk, Theresa Kimaliadjuk, Eli Kimaliadjuk

Henry Evaluardjuk, Celestin Erkidjuk

Herve Paniaq, Madeleine Ivalu, Rachel Ujarasuq, Sippora Innuksuk,

Pond Inlet
Annie Peterloosie, Jabob Peterloosie, Cornelius Nutaraq, Joanasie Macpa

Clyde River
Naujarlat Tassugat

Gjoa Haven
Judas Aqilgiaq, Jimmie Qiqut, Ruby Eleeheetook, Gideon Qitsualik

Bernadette Uttaq, Neeveeovak Marqniq, Mary Ittunga

Cambridge Bay
Frank Analok, Moses Koihok, Margaret Nakashook, Matthew Nakashook.

For help with production of this website, thanks to the Kitikmeot Heritage Society and especially to Emily Angulalik who coordinated translation and transcription of tapes. Thanks to Louise Anaija, Marie-Lucie Uviluq, Mary Nashook, and Emily Angulalik for transcription and translation, to Diavik Corporation for funding, and to Robert MacNevin for the website design and implementation.

For help on the research trip, thanks to our interpreters Percy Tutannuaq, Philip Paneak, Simon Okpakok, Peter Mannilak, and Julia Ogina, and to many others in Nunavut who facilitated this work. For making the research trip possible, thanks to to drumsong communications, Triad Films, St. Mary’s University, John Houston, Peter d’Entremont, Marnie Bienias, and their generous funders including Nunavut Film, Kivalliq Inuit Association/Aboriginal Language Initiative, Aboriginal Peoples Television Network, Kakivak Association, and Nova Scotia Film Development Corporation.

For Permission to Use the Artworks
Thanks to the Winnipeg Art Gallery and the Sanavik Coop, Baker Lake, for permission to use the following art works:

Qiviuq Spits on the Evil Woman, by Janet Kigusiuq
The Boy and his Grandmother Trick the Mean People, by Victoria Mamnguqsualuk Kayuruk
Qiviuq Comes to the Old Woman, by Janet Kigusiuq
Qiviuq Episode with the Spirit of the Lake, by Victoria Mamnguqsualuk Kayuruk.
Qiviuq’s Animal Wives, by Victoria Mamnguqsualuk Kayuruk.
Qiviuq’s Journey, by William Noah
Qiviuq and the Fishmaker, by Janet Kigusiuq

Photography of the art works, by Ernest Mayer, The Winnipeg Art Gallery

Nunavut basemap reproduced with the permission of the Minister of Public Works and Government Services Canada, 2007, and Courtesy of Natural Resources Canada.

Kira Van Deusen selected and editied the stories and wrote the accompanying material. She is a professional storyteller and cellist based in Vancouver, Canada. She travelled extensively in Siberia's forests, tundra, and steppe over the 15 years beginning shortly after the fall of the Soviet Union, and connected with indigenous traditions, stories, and people. In 2004 Kira travelled in all three regions of Nunavut with filmmaker John Houston. About listening to Inuit elders telling the story of Kiviuq she says, “It was the greatest listening experience of my life!”

Kira’s books include:
Kiviuq, An Inuit Hero and His Siberian Cousins. Montreal: McGill-Queens University Press. 2009.

Singing Story, Healing Drum: Shamans and Storytellers of Turkic Siberia
. Montreal: McGill-Queens University Press. 2004.

The Flying Tiger: Women Shamans and Storytellers of the Amur. Montreal: McGill-Queens University Press. 2001.

Woman of Steel: A Tuvan Epic. Vancouver and Bellingham: Udagan Books. 2000.

Raven and the Rock: Storytelling in Chukotka Seattle: University of Washington Press and Canadian Circumpolar Institute 1999

Shyaan Am! Tuvan Folk Tales Udagan Books, Bellingham, WA 1996

Fo more information about Kira and her work please go to

Website Design: Robert D. MacNevin

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