Films on Ice: Cinemas of the Arctic

Scott Mackenzie (Editor), Anna Westerstahl Stenport (Editor)

Research output: Book/Report/Conference proceedingBook


The first book to address the vast diversity of Northern circumpolar cinemas from a transnational perspective, Films on Ice: Cinemas of the Arctic presents the region as one of great and previously overlooked cinematic diversity. With chapters on polar explorer films, silent cinema, documentaries, ethnographic and indigenous film, gender and ecology, as well as Hollywood and the USSR’s uses and abuses of the Arctic, this book provides a groundbreaking account of Arctic cinemas from 1898 to the present. Challenging dominant notions of the region in popular and political culture, it demonstrates how moving images (cinema, television, activist and art video, and digital media) have been central to the very definition of the Arctic since the end of the nineteenth century. Bringing together an international array of European, Russian, Nordic, and North American scholars, Films on Ice radically alters stereotypical views of the Arctic region, and therefore of film history itself. Areas covered in the book include: 1) Global Indigeneity; 2) Hollywood hegemony; 3) Ethnography and documentary Dilemmas; and 4) Myths and Modes of Exploration. Key Arctic films from the history of cinema are addressed (from Nanook of the North to Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner), along with little-known works that re-shape our understanding of moving images in the global circumpolar Arctic.
Original languageEnglish (US)
PublisherEdinburgh University Press
ISBN (Electronic)9781474408561
ISBN (Print)9780748694174
StatePublished - Jan 2015


  • Arctic cinemas
  • ethnographic film
  • Hollywood cinemas
  • Canadian cinemas
  • Nordic cinemas
  • transnational cinemas
  • documentary film
  • Sámi cinema
  • Inuit cinema
  • indigenous media
  • Polar exploration


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