Community Comment

An Excerpt


The strength of this article is its attempt to show that the psychologist’s code of ethics can link to traditional knowledge. It shows that there are aspects of traditional knowledge that could be useful in psychology. Direct contact with Elders regarding traditional methods used in dealing with troubled individuals would have been interesting.

The Nunavut territorial government may not be the first to be shaped by an Aboriginal world view. Kalaalit Nunaat (Greenland) has a long history of home rule based on culture and language of its people.

There may be some gap in use of terminology and language in relation to traditional knowledge and this gap may be due to regional differences. Some important values are not listed in the Inuttitut words; such as Upigiutiniq/ Upigusunniq — which is appreciation and/or respect for one or each other. Puqiasunnginiq is a value very important amongst any peoples and that is trust and believing. These are not exhaustive and could be different in each Inuit group.

In reference to community as a whole vs. individuals, it is proper to question whether the view is appropriate today. As for conflict between CPA and IQ in that CPA gives priority to individuals over community, I say that is why now we have so many problems amongst individuals as the community concept is now very different from the past.

Wihak says that sustained deception is difficult to achieve in communities that are small because private lives are so exposed. The communities may be small but there are very serious community problems that are not being exposed. This can be broken down to families who are aware within themselves of serious problems which somehow are not any different to anyone else’s, but it still does not become a community problem until it is of epidemic proportion. For example, sexual abuse (starting in families) leads to suicide which becomes a community tragedy.

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