Thule Inuit occupying the Arctic as Dorset people disappear

by Vi Donche on Aug 13

The Dorset culture has disappeared from Arctic Canada, its place taken by a new and vibrant people who have introduced to the area a sophisticated sea-hunting culture that comes from Alaska. While the disappearance of the Dorset is shrouded in mystery, it appears certain they were either driven out, killed or absorbed by the newcomers, called the Thule Inuit.

The Thule are calling themselves "Inuit", meaning "the people." They speak Inuktitut, originate from northern (Alaska) and base their economy and technology on the hunt for the great (Greenland) and (Bowhead) whale. 

The recent warning trend has reduced the amount of sea ice, allowing these huge mammals, each yielding several tons of meat and blubber, to be hunted further east along the Arctic coast than ever before.

Following the whales, the Thule bring with them a hunting and weapons technology far superior to the people they encounter. Dogs pull their sleds, and they have overcome the problem of snow-blindness and ice glare by inventing slitted snow goggles.

Their summer homes are made of logs, and their winter dwellings appear to be perfectly insulated.

It appears the Thule have perfected the art of arctic survival. Coupled with their more aggressive nature, their superiority doomed the Dorset people.