The Saami History In Sweden – a summary before the ”Great Mini-series” on South Saami History continues. This is a Story about a actual Brutal Colonization – a still ongoing supplantation: including Slavery, torture, punishments by whipping in skin, Ethnic Cleansing, religious oppression … From the period 1730-40 and on each and every Saami that intended to remain on the Forest Saamis ancient grounds South of River Ljungan (prior: Ognan), need to sign a life-long contract and become a parish Saami (sockenlapp is the historical term). Nevertheless, many of those families who got stuck in a, much too often, unhappy slave-like existence, kept up a nomadizing or at least, semi-nomadizing subsistence. But after 1789 the authorities expressed a apparent will to sedentarize the Saamis. Through this process the last Forest Saami life-style, the language, culture and finally also almost all of the people actually vanished. They were doomed. This was also connected to the health-hazardous small shelters they were left to live in. As I wrote in the former part; since the infant mortality rose to peaks up around 90%, the Forest Saamis, eventually called Parish Saamis, got extinct. In a paralell process the Southernmost Forest Saamis, as well to the one closest to rural and coastal areas, also got extinct. Today: Repression, opression, supplantation and ethnic cleasing is still operating processes. The State even questions the Saamis ancient right to hunt or fish! And ignorance, lack of knowledge is perhaps the crucial problem. Ignorance is bascially and most often what makes all the colonial interventions possible. The Swedish state need to behold the fact, that the Saami’s land is not a common butlery for anyone to pick anything from! The old, wide-spread knowledge about the winter pasturage habits; to travel to coast stripes and islands along the Bothnic guld coast is, alas, long gone. In a project I worked as a project leader in, around 2000, we – at least momentarily, managed to increase some knowledge. On that; as well as on the Forest and Parish Saamis etc. Today I don’t know. While people complain about lion’s, this people disappears in front of our very eyes. More than ever time do document. To re-gain Saami rights, and get them acknowledged. I am proud to say I was highly involved in the Nordmaling law suit process, where three reindeer herding units (samebyar) won this major case! This was in 2011. And the Saami history must be studied in general, in all four countries, plus it must be related to other Circumpolar, Arctic and Sub-arctic, Northern and Uralic as well as Fennoscandic, European and Eurasiatic history.
Peter Ericson, Scholar, Expert Witness in law suit cases, Mid-Saepmie, August 3, 2015.
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Schools, universities (I am a University teacher since 1996!), organizations …. Inbox me, and we can arrange a lecture! A overseas tour would not be so bad.
I am still mainly free for more extensive gigs in spring 2016.
I am going almost viral again: some three hundred readers in N. America last hours.
Many new countries among my readers; I Say hello to Bulgaria, Australia and Hong Kong!
Picture: Johan Tirén. A famous artist and close friend to the Saamis, who lived in the 1800s and the early 1900s. ”After The Blizzard” (1885). Via Flickr and Mirage Bookmark.