Aġiyġaq Herbert Anungazuk and Ernest S. Burch, Jr.: Remembering an Iñupiaq Anthropologist and His Mentor

Igor Krupnik, Kenneth L. Pratt and Carol Zane Jolles


Aġiyġaq Herbert Anungazuk (1945–2010) was an Iñupiaq cultural anthropologist, born and raised in Wales, Alaska. It was here that he first met Ernest S. “Tiger” Burch. In this article I retrace briefly Herbert Anungazuk’s life journey from his boyhood training as a marine mammal hunter to his fortunate meeting with Tiger who engaged him as a consultant in his own research in Wales. Over the ensuing years, the two men formed a collaborative relationship and friendship. I attempt to fit their relationship into the more general context of Anungazuk’s life and suggest that Tiger Burch became mentor, teacher and friend to Herbert Anungazuk, even as he became teacher and friend to Tiger Burch. Before his death, Herbert Anungazuk had become one of very few Alaska Native anthropologists in a field dominated by non-Natives and an esteemed scholar of Iñupiaq culture and history.

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