Alaska: Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow


Subsistence harvest of Alaska’s natural resources was the basis of Alaska Native culture, the food people ate, the shelters they built, the clothing they made and wore. Natives believed in the idea that all physical things , are related in an interdependent web of relationships. Not only were Natives tied to the land by subsistence; they were tied to all life and the environment by sharing and dependence. Therefore ,to threaten the opportunities for subsistence harvesting among Native peoples in Alaska today and in the future is to confront a fundamental part of Native heritage and identity. As Alaskans struggle with the politics of ANILCA, they will need to understand more deeply the central role of land and subsistence in Alaska Native life.

How will knowledge of Native subsistence traditions help Alaskans to formulate public policies to protect Native culture?