Conceptual Frameworks for Nuu-chah-nulth Whaling

Author(s): Gregory Monks

Year: 2017


The Nuu-chah-nulth (Nootka) of Canada’s west coast are renown ethnographically for their cultural practice of open ocean whaling. Research in the last decade has shed light on the preferred species, the ecological reasons why whales were pursued, the antiquity of whaling, and the economic and social implications of whaling. Most of this research has been substantive and methodological in nature with only modest attention to theoretical issues. In this paper, I take a Human Behavioral Ecology perspective on Nuu-chah-nulth whaling and offer analyses of the practice from both optimal foraging and costly signaling perspectives. I conclude that these perspectives are complementary and provide a more complete understanding of the practice than would one or the other perspective alone.

Cite this Record

Conceptual Frameworks for Nuu-chah-nulth Whaling. Gregory Monks. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 430919)


Spatial Coverage

min long: -169.717; min lat: 42.553 ; max long: -122.607; max lat: 71.301 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 15360