Beaivváš – an institution for Sámi culture management or mainstream entertainment? : The Sámi National Theatre’s role in the Sámi community of Norway
After the Sámi awakening movement in the 1970’s which culminated in the Alta conflict in 1981, the Sámi theater Beaivváš was created to highlight the Sámi language and culture in Norway. The theater became a success and was at first one of the main spokesmen for the Sámi people in the political and cultural contexts. As Sámi rights were recognized, Beaivváš and several Sámi institutions were established as a piece in the Sámi nation building process. In the process where Beaivváš went from a free theater group to a fixed item on the state budget, the Western theater form became applicable to the Sámi theater. Beaivváš has faced huge challenges in the management of the institution and has now come to a critical point in the development where the choice seems to be between commercialization of ancient Sámi arts- and cultural expressions or a closing of the Sámi national theater. This thesis’ purpose is to describe and analyze Beaivváš’ past and present role in the Sámi community in Norway and discuss a prospective solution for the theater’s role in the future. To look how other Indigenous peoples solve their culture preserving challenges, I have visited TIPA – the successful Tibetan Institute of Performing Arts in Dharamshala, India. The exile-Tibetans’ strategy for culture management is examined and discussed to determine whether TIPA is a possible model for how to conduct the Sámi culture institution Beaivváš in the future.
ForlagUiT Norges arktiske universitet
UiT The Arctic University of Norway
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