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Chie Sakakibara

Contact Information:


144D Eggers Hall

Office Hours:

By Appointment

Chie Sakakibara

Associate Professor, Geography and the Environment Department


GEO 300 Native American & Indigenous Geographies
NAT 200 Ainu Renaissance: Reclaiming the History, Heritage, and Environment in Indigenous Japan
NAT 200 Multispecies Indigeneity: Environmental Philosophy, Ethics, and Survivance  

Highest degree earned

Ph.D., University of Oklahoma, 2007

Areas of Expertise

Indigenous geographies, environmental humanities, humanistic geography, Arctic studies

Research Grant Awards and Projects

Select Grants

2018 Foundation for Research & Promotion of Ainu Culture. Research grant for “Community-Partnered Exploration of Ainu Well-being, Environmental Justice, and Heritage Resources.”$10,000

2017 National Science Foundation (NSF) Arctic Social Sciences Program Conference Grant for the Oral History workshop in Africatown, Alabama with Janet Fiskio (PI), Oberlin College, $40,000 (Award ID# 29089

2009-2013 NSF Early-Concept Grant for Exploratory Research (EAGER) for the Community-Partnered Repatriation of Iñupiaq Music and Photographs with Dr. Aaron A. Fox (PI), Columbia University, $136,000 (Award ID #0939905)

2005-2007 NSF Doctoral Dissertation Research Improvement Grant for Cetaceousness and Global Warming among the Iñupiat in Arctic Alaska, $12,000 (Award ID #0526168)



Sakakibara, Chie. 2020. Whale Snow: Iñupiat, Climate Change, and Multispecies Resilience in Arctic Alaska. First Peoples: New Directions in Indigenous Studies Series. Tucson, AZ: University of Arizona Press. Recipient of the AAG 2020 Meridian Book Award

Select journal articles and book chapters:

Sakakibara, Chie, and Rosemary Ahtuangaruak. 2022. “ ‘We are Torn About Our Future’: Big Oil and Iñupiaq Community Health in Arctic Alaska.” Chapter 2, pp. 21-39. In Cold Water Oil: Imagining Offshore Petroleum Cultures. Danine Farquharson & Fiona Polack, eds. London, U.K.: Routledge (Environment & Sustainability Series). 

Sakakibara, Chie. 2021.“Singing for the Whales: Whaling Peoples and Shared Heritage in Arctic Alaska and the Azores.” Chapter 5, pp. 119-135. In Performing Diverse Environmentalisms: Expressive Culture at the Crux of Ecological Change. John McDowell et al., eds. Champaign: University of Illinois Press. 

Huntington, Henry, Chie Sakakibara, George Noongwook, Nicole Kanayurak, V. Skhauge, Eduard Zdor, Sandra Inutiq, B. Lyberth. 2020. “Whaling in Indigenous Cultures of the Arctic.” Chapter 31, pp. 501-518. In The Bowhead Whale Balaena mysticetus: Biology and Human Interactions. J. C. George & J. G. M. Thewissen, eds. Amsterdam, Netherlands: Elsevier. 

Sakakibara, Chie, Elise Horensky (Oberlin College’17), and Sloane Garelick (Oberlin College’17). 2020. “Indigenous Peoples and Climate Change: Humanistic Explorations of Cultural Resilience.” Environmental Philosophy 17 (1): 75-92. 

Sakakibara, Chie. 2018. “Climate Change, Whaling Tradition, and Cultural Survival Among the Iñupiat of Arctic Alaska." In Indigenous Knowledge for Climate Change Assessment and Adaptation. Douglas Nakashima, ed. Cambridge, U. K.: Cambridge University & UNESCO Press, pp. 265-279. 

Sakakibara, Chie. 2018. “Collaborative Reciprocity Revisited: Giving Back Through the Community-Partnered Iñupiaq Music Heritage Repatriation Project.” In Giving Back: Research and Reciprocity in Indigenous Contexts. RDK Herman, ed. Corvallis: Oregon State University Press, pp. 109-127. 

Sakakibara, Chie. 2017. “People of the Whales: Climate Change and Cultural Resilience among Iñupiat of Arctic Alaska.” The Geographical Review 107 (1): 159-184. 

Sakakibara, Chie. 2017. “Northern Relations: Colonial Whaling, Climate Change, and the Inception of a Collective Identity in Northern Alaska and the Northern Atlantic.” In Critical Norths: Space, Nature, Theory. Sarah Jaquette Ray & Kevin Maier, eds. Anchorage: University of Alaska Press, pp. 139-169. 

Sakakibara, Chie. 2014. “Humanistic Perspectives on Native Americans.” In Craig E. Colten & Geoffrey L. Buckley (Eds.), North American Odyssey: Historical Geographies for the Twenty-first Century, p. 74. Lanham, MD: Rowan & Littlefield. 

Sakakibara, Chie. 2012. “Dancing for the Whales: Kivġiq and Cultural Resilience among the People of the Whales.” In Subhankar Banerjee (Ed.), Arctic Voices: Resistance at the Tipping Point, pp. 335-345. NY: Seven Stories Press. 

Sakakibara, Chie. 2011. “Climate Change and Cultural Survival in the Arctic: Muktuk Politics and the People of the Whales.” Weather, Climate and Society 3 (2): 76-89. 

Sakakibara, Chie. 2011. “Whale Tales: People of the Whales and Climate Change.” Focus on Geography 54 (3): 75-90. 

Alexander, Clarence, Nora Bynum, Elizabeth Johnson, Ursula King, Tero Mustonen, Peter Neofotis, Noel Oettlé, Cynthia Rosenzweig, Chie Sakakibara, Vyacheslav Shadrin, Marta Vicarelli, Jon Waterhouse, & Brian Weeks. 2011. “Linking Indigenous and Scientific Knowledge of Climate Change.” BioScience 61 (6): 477-484. 

Sakakibara, Chie. 2010. “Kiavallakkikput Aġviq (Into the Whaling Cycle): Cetaceousness and Climate Change among the Iñupiat of Arctic Alaska.” Annals of the Association of American Geographers 100 (4): 1003-1012. 

Sakakibara, Chie. 2009. “ ‘No Whale, No Music’: Contemporary Iñupiaq Drumming and Global Warming.Polar Record 45 (4): 289-303. [Translated and appeared as “Sin ballenas, no hay música: los tambores Iñupiat y el calentamiento global” in Perspectivas Culturales del Clima by Astrid Ulloa (Editor). Bogotá: Universidad Nacional-ILSA (2011). pp. 120-132.] 

Sakakibara, Chie. 2008. “ ‘Our Home is Drowning’: Iñupiat Storytelling and Climate Change in Point Hope, Alaska.” The Geographical Review 98 (4): 456-478. [Recipient of the American Geographical Society (AGS) Wrigley-Fairchild Prize for best article in the Geographical Review 2008-2011] 

Exhibition catalogs:

Hummingbird, Edward, and Chie Sakakibara. 2021. “All Things Sacred: A Retrospective View on Contemporary Native American and Alaska Native Art and the Development of Indigenous Identity.” Exhibition catalog for Fifty Years of Contemporary Native American Art 1971-2021: A Retrospective Look at the Indigenous Experience Shared through the Lens of Eighty-Six Contemporary Artists. Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute (SIPI) 50th Anniversary Exhibition, October 20-November 24, 2021. 

Sakakibara, Chie. 2019. 『平取コタン古写真群(米国・オーバリン大学所蔵)の環境史的検証』 Community-Partnered Exploration of Environmental History based on Historical Photos of Biratori-Ainu Village. Foundation for Research & Promotion of Ainu Culture Press, Sapporo, Japan. 

Sakakibara, Chie, Sam Tunick (OC’18). 2017. Exploring Reciprocity: The Power of Animals in Non-Western Art. Exhibition catalogue with assistance from Sam Tunick (OC’18) and Liliana Milkova (AMAM Curator of Academic Programs), 12 pages. Oberlin: Allen Memorial Art Museum. 

Sakakibara, Chie, with the assistance provided by Liliana Milkova and Sam Tunick (Oberlin College’18). 2017. Exploring Reciprocity: The Power of Animals in Non-Western Art. January 24-June 4, 2017. In conjunction with this exhibition, the following documents were produced: 
Exploring Reciprocity: The Power of Animals in Non-Western Art. Exhibition catalog, 12 pages. Color. 

Sakakibara, Chie, with the assistance provided by Liliana Milkova and Sam Tunick (Oberlin College’18). 2017. Counter-Mapping Animal Landscapes: Geographies and Reciprocity in Native American and Japanese Imaginations: A supplement to works in the Allen Memorial Art Museum.