The commission seeks to control the hunting of whales by indigenous groups through a series of regulations. These regulations include the stipulation that products resulting from the hunting of whales cannot be exported and that whaling must be conducted “in perpetuity appropriate to cultural and nutritional requirements.” It is the responsibility of the indigenous group’s national government to provide the IWC with evidence of the cultural and subsistence needs of their people.
The Haida nation of the Pacific Northwest coast of North America gives us this depiction of an Orca on the left. The photograph on the right is a lower part of a totem pole and a small carved figure from the corner of a house, representing the killer whale, with the human face at the base of the dorsal fin.
National Anthropological Archives