Jean Malaurie

Jean Malaurie ( born December 22, 1922 in Mainz, Germany ) is a major French geomorphologist, ethnologist, Arctic explorer, author and documentary filmmaker and " UNESCO Goodwill Ambassador ". He has worked internationally for various governments in Washington, Ottawa, Copenhagen and Moscow as a scientific advisor.


After two first expeditions with Paul -Émile Victor in the late 1940s traveled Malaurie 1950 Greenland for the first time and began to intensively explore the culture of the Inuit. To this end, he lived even temporarily, including Siorapaluk Thule closely with Eskimos together. This was followed by more than 30 expeditions to the Arctic, Greenland, in addition to Alaska, Canada and Siberia. It also charted Malaurie about 300 kilometers of coastline. Jean Malaurie reached on 29 May 1951 as the first European to the geomagnetic North Pole in Inglefield Land in northwestern Greenland.

In 1955 founded the French publisher Plon Malaurie the book series Terre Humaine, in the important titles as Tristes Tropiques by Claude Lévi -Strauss published. In 1956 he was co-founder of the Center for Arctic Studies ( Centre d' études et arctiques Finno- scandinaves ) at the École Pratique des Hautes Études of the Sorbonne.

In the 1970s, Jean Malaurie convened an international and interdisciplinary conference, which, dealt very early and trendsetting with the importance of the Arctic mineral resources, especially of petroleum for the peoples living there. He is to be regarded as a staunch advocate for the rights of minorities Arctic, which he sees threatened by industrial development.

After Gorbachev had come to the top of the Soviet Union, led Malaurie 1990 on behalf of the Soviet government, the first international expedition in the Siberian Chukotka, visiting the first non- Soviet researchers Walallee, an arctic place of worship until 1977 by the Soviet archaeologist Sergei Alexandrovich Arutjunow ( * 1932) and Mikhail Antonjewitsch Tschlenow (* 1940) has been discovered, however, had remained largely unknown. Later he founded the State Polar Academy in St. Petersburg, whose purpose is the establishment of educational elites of the Arctic peoples.

In 2007 he was appointed a UNESCO " goodwill ambassadors " for the Arctic regions. In the same year he was appointed Honorary President of the Uummannaq Polar Institute, an institution for the preservation of culture and promotion of educational programs for the youth of the Inuit. In 2009, the UNESCO it was responsible for preparing the draft of a treaty on environmental protection in the Arctic.


  • Les Rois de derniers Thulé, Librairie Plon, Paris 1955 ( German edition: The Last Kings of Thule, VEB FA Brockhaus Verlag, Leipzig 1957)
  • Ultima Thulé. De la découverte à l' invasion. Ed. . du Chêne, 2000 ISBN 2-84277-295-4 ( German edition. myth North Pole expedition 200 years history, National Geographic Germany, 2003, ISBN 3-936559-20-1. . )
  • L' Appel du Nord. Editions de La Martinière, Paris 2001 ( German edition: The Call of the North In the Footsteps of the Inuit JC Bucher Verlag, Munich 2001, ISBN 3-7658-1291-9. .. )
  • Avenue of whales. The Delphi the Arctic and the magic of the Siberian Inuit (excerpt). In: Lettre International 63, 2003.
  • Earth's Wrath (excerpt). In: Lettre International 81, Summer 2008.
  • Jean Malaurie, une énergie créatrice by Giulia Bogliolo Bruna, coll « Lire et comprendre », Editions Armand Colin, Paris, October 2012.

Films (selection )

  • Jean Malaurie: The Ultimate Kings of Thule ( The Last Kings of Thule). Documentary, France 2002, 52 minutes.
  • Michel Viotte: Jean Malaurie - Polar passion for research. Documentary, France 2009, 43 minutes, aired on the 7th, 8th and 13th March 2010 arte.