The Return of the Sun: Suicide and Reclamation Among Inuit of Arctic Canada


Product Details

Oxford University Press, USA
Publish Date
6.1 X 9.1 X 0.6 inches | 0.65 pounds

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About the Author

Michael Kral, PhD, is a clinical/community/cultural psychologist and medical anthropologist working as an Associate Professor in the School of Social Work, Wayne State University. He has also taught at the universities of Manitoba, Windsor, Yale, and Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He has been
conducting community-based participatory action research with Inuit in Nunavut, Canada for over 20 years. His research has looked at suicide, kinship, culture change, and youth resilience.


"The author's decades-long experience and relationships with Inuit peoples coalesce with his community-based participatory action research methodology to consistently reflect the primacy of commitment to and by Inuit youth and the willingness of others to drive community action and empowerment...Highly recommended." -- G. Bruyere, University of Lethbridge, CHOICE

"The Return of the Sun Suicide and Reclamation Among Inuit of Arctic Canada by Michael Kral, trace[s] the origins of the suicide crisis in Nunavut to the mid-twentieth century, when these traditionally nomadic people moved off the land into towns. [The book] contain[s] many statistics, as well as convincing descriptions of abstract changes such as "the dynamics of Inuit social transformation" -- Helen Epstein, Helen Epstein

"Michael J. Kral has produced an important ethnographic study investigating the devastating problem of youth suicide in Inuit communities, and its complex cultural history. Writing with sensitivity and honesty, he draws on two decades of collaborative fieldwork to explain how the burden of colonialism persists, continuing to fragment communities, and shatter lifeworlds. Kral is at pains to show how from this emotional devastation, movements of cultural resistance, reclamation and hope still take hold." -- Nancy Wachowich, PhD, University of Aberdeen

"The Return of the Sun is a compassionate and comprehensive analysis of the traumas faced by indigenous peoples in the Canadian Arctic. Unpacking the impact of colonialism and cultural assimilation on Nunavut Inuit elders and youth, Kral patiently and skillfully reveals diverse and competing voices as individuals ponder the consequences of simultaneously inhabiting two worlds, the traditional Inuit world and the world of the Qallunaat ("white people"). The author prioritizes local conceptions of well-being and mental health, revealing an Inuit path toward the design and management of wellness and care in Nunavut." -- Edmund Searles, PhD, Bucknell University

"The Return of the Sun builds a compelling case for an understanding of Inuit suicide as symbol of social suffering and function of the undeniable impacts of colonialism. The work provides fresh insights into the critical importance of contemporary efforts reclaiming Inuit self-determination and culture, and crucial advocacy for locally controlled, strengths-based cultural approaches for prevention of Inuit suicide." -- James Allen, PhD, University of Minnesota Medical School, Duluth Campus