Creating the New North (CNN)

Encounters and change in the pre-modern North 500-1800 CE 

CNN is an interdisciplinary research group that facilitates cooperation between archeologists, historians, art historians, historians of religion and cultural scientists at UiT The Arctic University of Norway. CNN serves as a forum for the coordination of research, education and public outreach on the historical settlement patterns, social organizations, and identities that shaped the High North in the pre-modern era. 


Our aim is to create knowledge about the processes by which the northernmost regions of Europe, once an open ethnic landscape devoid of overarching state institutions, were transformed into the peripheries of expanding polities centered in metropolitans far to the south. These processes influenced – and were influenced by – the exploitation of resources, the expansion of commercial networks, the growth of scientific inquiry, the intensification of cross-cultural encounters, and the shifting perceptions and prejudices of interlocutors and outsiders alike. These developments also exemplify the early processes of globalization that reshaped Europe and its neighbors in the Middle Ages and Early Modern Era.