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“Deception begins with trade . . .”

Vladimir Arsen’ev’s Economic Expertise and Challenges of Rationalizing Imperial Diversity in the Taiga

Aleksandr Turbin

The article explores Vladimir Arsen’ev’s rationalization of the economic activities that he observed during expeditions in the Russian Far East, predominantly in the Ussuri region. It analyzes his categorization of the local population, which was derived from nonmatching taxonomies and included concepts such as nationality, religion, race, and subjecthood. Disentangling this categorization helps to outline the main contexts that influenced Arsen’ev, such as postwar political and military concerns, challenges of settler colonialism, and nationalizing empire. The article shows how Arsen’ev’s intertwined life experiences as a military officer and geographer, colonization official, ethnographer, and resource-conscious naturalist outlined the limits of his imagination and provided the ground for his intellectual innovations.

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Stephen J. Silvia

Since German unification, assessments of the German economy have swung from “sick man of the euro” in the early years to dominant hegemon of late. I argue that the German economy appears strong because of its recent positive performance in two politically salient areas: unemployment and the current account. A deeper assessment reveals, however, that German economic performance cannot be considered a second economic miracle, but is at best a mini miracle. The reduction in unemployment is an important achievement. That said, it was not the product of faster growth, but of sharing the same volume of work among more individuals. Germany’s current account surpluses are as much the result of weak domestic demand as of export prowess. Germany has also logged middling performances in recent years regarding growth, investment, productivity, and compensation. The article also reviews seven challenges Germany has faced since unification: financial transfers from west to east, the global financial crisis, the euro crisis, internal and external migration, demographics, climate change, and upheavals in the automobile industry. German policy-makers managed the first four challenges largely successfully. The latter three will be more difficult to tackle in the future.

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Kuwait and Iran

Mutual Contact in the Pre-oil Era

Yacoub Y. Al-Hijji

This article examines the relations and interaction between Kuwait and Iran before the export of oil from Kuwait in 1946. It begins with a short account of the establishment of Kuwait as a small maritime community, the ramifications of its location amongst its three large neighbours, and Iran's role in helping Kuwait to establish its roots as a seafaring community by providing its earlier inhabitants with basic food requirements. The article then goes on to review several aspects of the interaction between Iran and Kuwait and the influence that these communities have had on one another. It concludes by emphasising that the relationship of mutuality between the two countries must continue in this age of oil and globalisation for the benefit of both peoples.

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Sophie Meunier

The most common perception of France found these days in the American media is that of an arrogant country, whose international gesticulations are the last hurrah masking its inevitable decline into oblivion. The French have not yet come to terms with their lengthy collapse, which started with the devastation of World War I, continued with the humiliation of their defeat in 1940 and was furthered by the loss of their colonial empire. This would explain their support, still to this day, for a Gaullist policy made up of power incantations, in contrast to real power—or lack thereof. Of course, this characterization is meant as much as an insult as an objective statement of fact. What few of these American commentators comprehend, however, is how much this image of a nation blinded by self-confidence is erroneous. On the contrary, the French have excelled at self-flagellation for a long time, rightly or wrongly. Whether one calls it “malaise” or decline, French commentators are the first to confess that France is free-falling—whether vis-à-vis the US, its European partners, or its own aspirations.

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John P. Ziker

This paper discusses flexibility in subsistence and exchange strategies and family and community structures in an indigenous community on the lower Enisei River in north-central Siberia. An analysis of available data on mobility, resource use, and social and economic exchanges contributes to understanding the factors that affect resilience of indigenous domestic groups and communities in the region. The historic flexibility of economic strategies and related social structure is described on the basis of data from the 1926/27 Polar Census. Data from the author's 1997 visit to the area (the Tukhard community) illustrates very similar strategies and variation in deployment of these strategies. New patterns of organization are discussed in relation to the issues of community resilience and indigenous rights.

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Affective Solidarities?

Participating in and Witnessing Fair Trade and Women’s Empowerment in Transnational Communities of Practice

Debarati Sen

manager of Sonakheti , a fair trade certified tea plantation in Darjeeling district. Mr Pradhan’s observations reflect the increase in ‘voluntourism’, a combination of aid work and tourism. Voluntourists practice sustainable tourism, corporate social

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Overlapping Time and Place

Early Modern England’s Girlhood Discourse and Indigenous Girlhood in the Dominion of Canada (1684-1860)

Haidee Smith Lefebvre

hereditary Mohawk chief and an upper class Englishwoman. Tekahionwake witnessed settlers displacing fur trade society and transforming Indigenous society in part by subjugating Indigenous women. Her essay provides a detailed account of the fictional Indian

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Narratives of Ambivalence

The Ethics of Vulnerability and Agency in Research with Girls in the Sex Trade

Alexandra Ricard-Guay and Myriam Denov

. While it is important to acknowledge the abuses committed against minors in the sex trade, this one-dimensional narrative may come into opposition with how the girls themselves perceive their experiences, and may actually hinder an understanding of the

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‘We Are Both Diplomats and Traders’

Afghan Transregional Traders Across the Former Soviet Union

Magnus Marsden

field of diplomacy and also brings attention to the ways in which notions of diplomacy are articulated in particular communities. This article points more broadly to the insights that scholarship on mobile and trans-regional trading networks offers to

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Ka-Kin Cheuk

]. In mid December 2011, a Yemeni and his Indian business partner, who co-owned a trading company in Yiwu, disappeared in the middle of the night, defaulting on a debt of US$1.58 million owed to fifteen Chinese suppliers ( Hindustan Times 2012b