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Environmental Expertise as Group Belonging

Environmental Sociology Meets Science and Technology Studies

Rolf Lidskog and Göran Sundqvist

sociology: the treadmill of production, risk society, and ecological modernization. We conclude that these theories are not clear about either what expertise is or how to balance scientism and powerism. Therefore, we turn to science and technology studies

Open access

(Re)Constructing the Baikal-Amur Mainline

Continuity and Change of (Post)Socialist Infrastructure

Olga Povoroznyuk

laid only along the oldest railroad segment between Taishet and Ust’-Kut (see Figure 1 ). BAM-2 is a recently launched state program of technological modernization of the railroad fueled by renewed resource extraction interests. It aims to complete the

Open access

State of Uncertainty

Educating the First Railroaders in Central Sakha (Yakutiya)

Sigrid Irene Wentzel

been lured to the region by the promise of stable incomes, secure jobs, and the prospect of becoming part of the drive to modernize and industrialize the Republic. The students had mostly come from distant—largely rural—parts of the Republic of Sakha

Open access

Toxic Sensorium

Agrochemicals in the African Anthropocene

Serena Stein and Jessie Luna

Pesticides and toxicity are constitutive features of modernization in Africa, despite ongoing portrayals of the continent as “too poor to pollute.” This article examines social science scholarship on agricultural pesticide expansion in Sub-Saharan Africa. We recount the rise of agrochemical usage in colonial projects that placed African smallholder farmers at the forefront of toxic vulnerability. We then outline prevalent literature on “knowledge deficits” and unsafe farmer practices as approaches that can downplay deeper structures. Missing in this literature, we argue, are the embodied and sensory experiences of African farmers as they become pesticide users, even amid an awareness of toxicity. Drawing on ethnographic research in Mozambique and Burkina Faso, we explore how the “toxic sensorium” of using agrochemicals intersects with farmers’ projects of modern aspiration. Th is approach can help elucidate why and how differently situated farmers live with pesticides, thereby expanding existing literature on structural violence and knowledge gaps.

Open access

Geographical Imagination, Anthropology, and Political Exiles

Photographers of Siberia in Late Imperial Russia

Tatiana Saburova


This article is focused on several themes connected with the history of photography, political exile in Imperial Russia, exploration and representations of Siberia in the late 19th–early 20th centuries. Photography became an essential tool in numerous geographic, topographic and ethnographic expeditions to Siberia in the late 19th century; well-known scientists started to master photography or were accompanied by professional photographers in their expeditions, including ones organized by the Russian Imperial Geographic Society, which resulted in the photographic records, reports, publications and exhibitions. Photography was rapidly spreading across Asian Russia and by the end of the 19th century there was a photo studio (or several ones) in almost every Siberian town. Political exiles were often among Siberian photographers, making photography their new profession, business, a way of getting a social status in the local society, and a means of surviving financially as well as intellectually and emotionally. They contributed significantly to the museum's collections by photographing indigenous people in Siberia and even traveling to Mongolia and China, displaying “types” as a part of anthropological research in Asia and presenting “views” of the Russian empire's borderlands. The visual representation of Siberia corresponded with general perceptions of an exotic East, populated by “primitive” peoples devoid of civilization, a trope reinforced by numerous photographs and depictions of Siberia as an untamed natural world, later transformed and modernized by the railroads construction.

Open access

Public Health in Eastern Europe

Visible Modernization and Elusive Gender Transformation

Evguenia Davidova

of the modernizing state with its biopolitical gaze is recognized, the section is focused on various medical participants who found their way in exercising some local agency, even if not always successfully. For example, as Maria Zarifi discuses, the

Open access

Anna Bara and Erika Monahan

flee the republic as desperate refugees. Cameron delivers a rigorous and moving perspective on Soviet modernization gone awry, laying out nuanced dynamics that spread the blame for this human-induced tragedy. In the famine's wake the base economy of the

Open access

Educating the Other

Foreign Governesses in Wallachia in the First Half of the Nineteenth Century

Nicoleta Roman

’ professional mobility and their role as agents of modernization. It sets aside national or imperial paradigms and argues that foreign governesses should be seen as actors who were part of a “relational history of entities.” 11 Governesses established

Open access

Stiletto Socialism

Social Class, Dressing Up, and Women's Self-Positioning in Socialist Slovenia

Polona Sitar

women served as the domestic bearers of socialist modernization with the mission of transforming the rest of their family members into modern citizens. 3 Clothing was one of the areas in which the identity and loyalty of citizens toward the state were

Open access

Dmitry V. Arzyutov

how pre-Soviet and Soviet anthropologists heroically conducted their research in “uncivilized conditions” in remote areas, and how they were captured by ideologies of evolutionism, Soviet modernization and development, we still know little about their