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Nunavik gets new Inuit place name maps

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Map version adapted for the magazine from original map: Nunatop Maps - Communities Collection: Kuujjuaq Original Scale: 1:50.000 Alphabet: Roman + Syllabic Original Dimensions: 24" tall x 29" wide (61 cm x 74 cm) Cartographer: Marta Benito - Avataq Cultural Institute © www.nunatop.com

The Avataq Cultural Institute has released a new collection of maps for Nunavik that include traditional names of places written in Roman orthography and syllabics. All 14 Nunavik communities and their surrounding areas, as well as Chisasibi, are included.

The maps are the result of decades of work to gather and catalogue traditional place names across the region. The project began with an elders’ conference in 1981 but the current project, called the Nunatop 50K Collection, started in 1983 through the Avataq Cultural Institute.

Between 2012 and 2014, Nicolas Perti- Duplessis, a project lead with Avataq, and Elsa Cencig, an Avataq archeologist, travelled to 11 communities speaking with elders, hunters and community members about traditional place names. The project was funded by Makivik Corp.

A digital version of the maps, complete with an app to be used with GPS, is in the works.