Vol. 14 of Scripta, “The Saami Shaman Drum”, is based on articles presented at a symposium by the same name, arranged by the Donner Institute in 1984. The aim of the symposium was to gather experts from different academic disciplines – such as archaeology, anthropology, ethnology, history, art, theology, musicology and the history of religions – to shed light on the Saami drum from as broad a perspective as possible.

The article of the day is:

Rydving, H. (1991). The Saami drums and the religious encounter in the 17th and 18th centuries. Scripta Instituti Donneriani Aboensis, 14, 28-51. https://doi.org/10.30674/scripta.67195 

From the end of the 17th to the middle of the 18th century much of the confrontation between indigenous Saami religion and Christianity was focused on the drums. The Saamis of both Denmark—Norway and Sweden—Finland had been christianized for decades. The main problem for the Church authorities turned out to be that of making the Saamis abandon their indigenous religious customs. From the end of the 17th century, an intense period of propaganda and coercion began to make the Saamis abandon these non Christian elements in their religion. For the Saamis, the drums represented their threatened culture, the resistance against the Christian claim to exclusiveness, and a striving to preserve traditional values.