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Sven Haakanson Jr., Ph.D.

Curator of North American Anthropology, Burke Museum,
Professor and Chair in Anthropology, University of Washington


Seattle, Washington, USA


Sven Haakanson Jr., Ph.D., is Sugpiaq from Old Harbor, Alaska. He is a Curator of North American Anthropology at the Burke Museum, Professor and Chair in Anthropology at the University of Washington. He is a recipient of a MacArthur Fellowship (2007), the Museums Alaska Award for Excellence (2008), the ATALM Guardians of Culture and Lifeways Leadership Award (2012), and his work on the Angyaaq led it to be inducted into the Alaska Innovators Hall of Fame (2020). He joined the University of Washington in 2013. He engages communities in cultural revitalization using material reconstruction as a form of scholarship and teaching. His projects have included the reconstruction of full-sized angyaaq traditional open boats from ethnographic models, as well as halibut hooks, masks, paddles, and traditional processing of bear gut into waterproof material for clothing. He has and continues to collaborate with the community of Akhiok at their Akhiok Kids camp since 2000.

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