Emily Bieniek, a 2013 graduate of the Department of Anthropology, recently published a new novel, On the Great Land, with Ward Street Press! The book is based on Emily's experiences as an intern in Nome, Alaska, and focuses on issues of community, trauma, and healing in Yup'ik families.
Nome, Alaska, is so remote that it can only be reached by airplane, boat, or dogsled. Situated on the coast of the Bering Sea, this town of less than four thousand people contends with bitter winters, the moose, bears, and muskoxen that roam the surrounding tundra, and a harsh cycle of days that vary from just a few hours of light in the winter to consecutive sunlit weeks in the summer months. No matter the season, both permanent and transient residents must depend on one another to navigate the physical and psychological challenges of living in the subarctic desert. With striking beauty and emotional frankness, On the Great Land weaves together thirteen vibrant short stories that explore community, loss, trauma, and healing in one of the most mesmerizing and demanding places in the world.