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Nordin, J. M., & Ojala, C.-G. (2018). Collecting, connecting, constructing: Early modern commodification and globalization of Sámi material culture. Journal of Material Culture, 23(1), 58–82.

Collecting, connecting, constructing : early modern commodification and globalization of Sámi material culture

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Author: Nordin, Jonas M1; Ojala, Carl-Gösta2
Organizations: 1Historiska museet, Stockholm, Sweden
2Uppsala University, Uppsala, Sweden
Format: article
Version: published version
Access: open
Online Access: PDF Full Text (PDF, 1.2 MB)
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Language: English
Published: SAGE Publications, 2018
Publish Date: 2019-01-10


This article analyses the role of material culture in the enforcing of a colonial order in early modern Sápmi (Land of the Sámi, the indigenous people in northern Norway, Sweden, Finland and the Kola Peninsula in Russia). In addition, the article focuses on the unequal power relations created through the collecting and cultural appropriation of Sámi objects. The 17th century saw a rapid growth of interest in the Sámi and their material culture. Clothing, sledges, ceremonial drums and other objects were collected for royal and noble courts of Europe, as well as for scholars and other collectors. This Eurocentric process of constructing Sáminess was concurrent with colonial attitudes towards non-European peoples. Empirically, the article explores the collecting of Sámi objects, clothes and religious/sacred material culture such as ceremonial drums and sieidis, as well as models and mannequins, and their role in the colonial rule and imperial representations of Sápmi.

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Series: Journal of material culture
ISSN: 1359-1835
ISSN-E: 1460-3586
ISSN-L: 1359-1835
Volume: 23
Issue: 1
Pages: 58 - 82
DOI: 10.1177/1359183517741663
Type of Publication: A1 Journal article – refereed
Field of Science: 615 History and archaeology
Funding: This article was written as part of the research project ‘Collecting Sápmi: Early Modern Globalization of Sámi Material Culture and Sámi Cultural Heritage Today’, funded by the Swedish Research Council (421-2013-1917).
Copyright information: © The Author(s) 2017. This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License ( which permits any use, reproduction and distribution of the work without further permission provided the original work is attributed as specified on the SAGE and Open Access pages (