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The new work regime in Nunavut: A gender perspective

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Inuit women and men's economic roles have been shifting over the last decades. Gender plays a crucial role in explaining wage work dynamics in contemporary Nunavut. Wage employment is an important element of Inuit female identity. This paper examines the economic landscape of contemporary Nunavut from the perspective of Inuit women's labour force activity. Gender is shown to play a crucial role in explaining wage work dynamics in contemporary Nunavut and, more importantly, within Inuit families. Despite the centrality of Inuit women's employment, family, and domestic responsibilities—as well as their increased participation in northern development—very few studies have examined gender dynamics in this context. Drawing on 29 families’ personal stories collected by the author in the community of Kangiqtugaapik, Nunavut between 2011 and 2013, this paper examines how wage work is organized at the community, family, and individual levels. Cet article examine le paysage économique du Nunavut à partir de l'activité économique des femmes inuites. Dans le Nunavut contemporain, l'identité de genre joue un rôle déterminant dans les dynamiques de travail salarié, particulièrement au sein des familles. Bien que les femmes inuites occupent une place centrale sur le marché du travail, dans les activités familiales et domestiques, et que leur participation au développement du nord n'ait cessé de croître, jusqu'à ce jour peu d'études se sont intéressées aux dynamiques de genre dans ce contexte. Afin d'examiner l'organisation du travail salarié à trois échelles — la communauté, la famille et l'individu — l'article s'appuie sur les récits individuels de 29 familles recueillis par l'auteur dans la communauté de Kangiqtugaapik, Nunavut entre 2011 et 2013.
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Keywords: Inuit women; Nunavut; femmes inuites; gender role; identity; identité; rôle de genre; travail salarié; wage employment

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: 01 September 2017

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