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Abstract

The rise of cultural diplomacy within Alaska Native communities has led to a renegotiation of heritage displays within mainstream museums. This article critically examines the incorporation of Bering Strait voices within two recent exhibits: Gifts from the Ancestors: Ancient Ivories of Bering Strait and Living Our Cultures, Sharing Our Heritage: The First Peoples of Alaska. Cross-cultural collaborations of exhibit planning and implementation are assessed through the review of museum records and commentary by Alaska Native and museum advisors. The processes of including Native voices and knowledge systems are analyzed in relation to exhibit spaces, websites, catalogues, and educational programming. With mixed efficacy, the exhibits push toward a new museology in which conventional exhibit practices are deconstructed and replaced according to indigenous, intellectual self-determination. [Alaska Native, museums, exhibits, collaboration, indigenous knowledge]