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Seminar: Under the Northern Star/ The Demonized Joik

Sentralen, Marmorsalen

Part 1 (17:00 – 18:30) Under the Northern Star
Med Mari Boine & Brita Pollan m.fl.

In the performance Under the Northern Star, Mari Boine goes back to her roots. She sings her earliest songs and plays samples of music she made for the movie Kautokeino Rebellion. Between songs religion historian Brita Pollan tells stories and anecdotes about what the Sami have suffered, from missionaries and priests who would tame and persecute the Sami demonized people. The stories Brita Pollan tells gives an insight into the spiritual backdrop of many of Mari Boine songs. A sore and deeply moving hiking in Sami culture and history.

Usually when we talk about Forbidden songs we tend to go far beyond the borders of the “open and democratic” Norway and think about countries where the human rights and cultural rights cannot be ensured. Yet, we will find many examples of limited freedom of speech in Norway, also in modern times. Not everyone knows that joik is still polemic and controversial in some Sami and Norwegian communities. It is a particularly contentious issue in some religious communities.

Part 2 (18:45 – 20:00) The demonized joik

After the performance “Under the Northern Star” we invite the audience for a talk about the demonized joik. We could not have dreamed of a better introduction. In the panel we have invited artists and academics. They have all their own personal way of highlighting the history of joik.


Aili Keskitalo – Saami parliament president

Brita Pollan – historian on religions

Mari Boine – Artist

Sara Marielle Gaup – Artist

Harald Gaski – Professor in sami literature


Magne Ove Varsi – Journalist



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