SU Professor Tony Dzik visited Greenland in July 2013 for several research projects.
Fascinated by the arctic, SSU Professor Tony Dzik visited Greenland in July 2013 to see the icecap, the physical and cultural geography and the wildlife for several research projects.
Kangerlussuaq, near the inland ice in Greenland, is the focus of his research paper “Kangerlussuaq: Evolution and Maturation of a Cultural Landscape in Greenland.” The paper will be published in the “Bulletin of Geography, Socio-Economic Series.” His article will appear in Volume 25, September 2014 edition.
“It was about 100 miles from the coast,” Dzik said. “In the early days of World War II, the American military took advantage of the exceptional flying conditions here and established an airbase.”
There were no settlements in the area and it did not attract permanent settlement by the Inuit or Scandinavian colonists. After WWII, a more permanent community developed.
“The cultural landscape of Kangerlussuaq is dominated by the airport which is partly a relic of the former American airbase,” Dzik said. “The American presence can still be seen in several areas."
The American base closed in 1992 and today the majority of residents are Inuit or Danish with roots in Greenland or Denmark.
“In recent years, there seems to be a growing sense of community as the cultural landscape begins to exhibit more of the components of a real ‘town,’ ” Dzik said.
Dzik plans to spend some time in the summer of 2014 doing field work in Kulusuk, a small village in east Greenland where the lifestyle is more traditional.