PATHS ACROSS THE PACIFIC IX
"New Evidence, New Directions"
August 17-21, 2016 Sitka, Alaska
Human Migrations across and around the Pacific
New Genetic Evidence and Southern Routes
Navigational knowledge: old, new, and revitalized
Disasters, Disruption, and Dispersal
Since 2002, small conferences of eclectic scholars have met to discuss human mobility across and along the coasts of the Pacific ocean. Our shared oceans, shared humanity, and a growing awareness of our shared responsibilities for the connected seas have shaped our ideas, understandings, and concerns. The ambiance of the island setting and the friendly people of Sitka provide a respectful and supportive environment for the interdisciplinary and international discourse we have - often on controversial topics.
During the first decade of the twenty-first century, a flurry of new scholarship stirred old ideas and introduced new ones. Molecular genetic studies, oceanography, marine biology, experimental rafting, and the revitalization of canoeing and kayaking have challenged established theories. Native American knowledge, navigational skills and rich oral traditions have added perspectives to our new understandings. We have greatly underestimated human mobility, intelligence, navigational knowledge, endurance, will and courage.
Photos by James Poulson.