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Eleventh British Universities Siberian Studies Seminar

11–15 September 2006, Vladivostok

Joseph Long

The 11th British Universities Siberian Studies Seminar (BUSSS) took place from the 11th to the 15th of September 2006 in Vladivostok and was hosted by the Pacific Institute of Geography of the Far Eastern Section of the Russian Academy of Science. Entitled “Siberia and the Russian Far East: Past, Present and Future,” the meeting marked the 25th anniversary of BUSSS and was attended by around 40 participants from all over the world

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Joseph Long

This research report gives an ethnographic account of libations and ritual offerings in the shamanic culture of contemporary Western Buriats. Common ritual motifs are identified between libations in everyday practice, annual rites at the family hearth, and large-scale tailgan rituals. It is suggested that such practices mediate reciprocity between neighbors and reconstitute obligations of mutual help within kin groups. Finally, it is proposed that the vitality of the ritual complex today lies in its fundamental articulation of the principles of reciprocity and belonging in the context of rapid out-migration from the region and the atomization of kin groups.

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Joseph Webster

In Gamrie, an Aberdeenshire fishing village home to 700 people and six millennialist Protestant churches, global warming is more than just a 'hoax': it is a demonic conspiracy that threatens to bring about the ruin of the entire human race. Such a certainty was rendered intelligible to local Christians by viewing it through the lens of dispensationalist theology brought to the village by the Plymouth Brethren. In a play on Weberian notions of disenchantment, I argue that whereas Gamrie's Christians rejected global warming as a false eschatology, and environmentalism as a false salvationist religion, supporters of the climate change agenda viewed global warming as an apocalyptic reality and environmentalism as providing salvific redemption. Both rhetorics - each engaged in a search for 'signs of the end times' - are thus millenarian.

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Joseph Sungolowsky

At the dawn of the twenty-first century, it is only natural if not essential to reflect upon and evaluate the relationship that existed between Edmond Fleg (1874–1963) and André Neher (1914–1988), two eminent Jewish thinkers who exerted a profound influence upon French Jewry of the twentieth century and perhaps on Jews in the rest of the world considering the number of their works that were translated in several languages. As a son of moderately observant Jews, Fleg became a part of the Parisian intellectual and artistic life as a student at the Ecole Normale Supérieure and a successful playwright and theatre critic.

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The Great War as Reflected in Italian Rabbinical Sermons

Rav S. Zvi Hirsch Margulies, Rav Ya'akov Bolaffio and Rav Giuseppe Levi

Joseph Levi

The article analyses the conflicting attitudes towards the First World War as reflected in the sermons of three Italian rabbis of the period, representing different rabbinical schools. Regardless of their rabbinical formation all three rabbis share a profound preoccupation with the devastating assimilation to Italian non-Jewish culture of Italian Jews after, and as a result of, the emancipation. Yet, while condemning the assimilation tendencies of the Jewish Italian population, they all remain faithful to the ideals of Italian Risorgimento emancipation values. As Italian emancipated Jews, the Rabbis identify themselves with the Italian political shift from liberal and socialist ideals towards national, patriotic war. Not without difficulty they give up prewar previous pacifist attitudes in favour of a patriotic loyalty to the new Italian state and its royal family, inviting their audience to be loyal to what seem to be the needs of their fatherland. Towards the end of the war, however, a significant part of the rabbinical leadership shifted towards a Zionist patriotism, investing their energies in constructing a new religious identity through Zionist, all-compassing, national Jewish identity. These tensions between Italian Risorgimento ideals and Jewish religious and cultural continuity on the one hand, and an Italian versus Zionist national solution to post-war crisis on the other, are analysed and exemplified by the sermons of the three rabbis in this micro-study of Italian Jewish identity before and after the First World War.

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Living in a Culture of Fear (2005)

A Muslim Perspective

Sarah Joseph

For those who are not familiar with the Harry Potter series I apologize; however, I think that a very fine point about fear was made in the third book of the series, The Prisoner of Azkhaban. Harry is about to come up against a Boggart – a creature which has no shape of its own, it is a shape shifter. It takes on the shape of what you fear the most. Harry’s teacher, Professor Lupin, does not allow Harry to confront the Boggart and Harry is upset about this, concerned that Professor Lupin had thought him inadequate in the face of the challenge. However, Lupin assures Harry that he had just been concerned that Lord Voldemort – the Dark Lord – would appear in the classroom. Harry, however, says no – he was not afraid of Lord Voldemort, rather he was afraid of the Dementors, who drain away all happiness from living things. ‘Ah,’ says Lupin, ‘it seems that the thing you fear, is fear itself. Very wise Harry!’ Indeed, very wise Harry. Fear is a crippling emotion.

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Joseph Cox

I wonder what my son saw. Two tours in Iraq, the loss of two best friends, in two violent provinces, end punctuated by two months in peaceful Kurdistan, time to reflect in relative safety.

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Joseph Nelson

Michael Reichert and Richard Hawley. 2014. I Can Learn from You: Boys as Relational Learners. Cambridge, MA: Harvard Education Press. 216 pp. ISBN: 9781612506647

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Joseph Khoury

This Orient Isle: Elizabethan England and the Islamic World, by Jerry Brotton (London: Allen Lane, 2016), 384 pages.

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Joseph Pridmore, Rennie Parker, Matt Simpson, Sue Dymoke, Michael Murphy and Alan Mahar

Gladsongs and Gatherings edited by Stephen Wade (Liverpool: Liverpool University Press, 2001) ISBN 0 85323 727 1 £13.95

So by Steven Blyth (Calstock: Peterloo Poets, 2001) ISBN 1871471892 £7.95

The Basics by Stuart Pickford (Bradford: Redbeck, 2001) ISBN 0946980 84 5 £6.95

A Different Kind of Smoke by Keith Chandler (Bradford: Redbeck, 2001) ISBN 0946980 81 0 £5.95

Looking in All Directions – Selected Poems 1954–2000 by Peter Kane Dufault (Tonbridge: Worple, 2000) ISBN 0953094758 £10.00

Passage from Home – A Memoir by Philip Callow (Nottingham: Shoestring Press, 2001) ISBN 189954965X £6.99

The Echoing Green by Gladys Mary Coles (Hexham: Flambard, 2001) ISBN 1873226489 £7.50

Letting Loose the Hounds by Martin Hayes (Frizinghall: Redbeck, 2001) ISBN 0099591316 £5.95

The Old Campaigners by George Jowett (Frizinghall: Redbeck, 2001) ISBN 09469809X £3.95

St. Cuthbert and Bystanders by Chris Considine (Frizinghall: Redbeck, 2001) ISBN 0946980802 £3.95

Sailing to Hokkaido by Joseph Woods (Tonbridge: Worple, 2001) ISBN 0953094766 £6.00

Tony Harrison and the Holocaust by Antony Rowland (Liverpool: Liverpool University Press, 2001) ISBN 0 85323 516 3 £9.99

Getting There by Matt Simpson (Liverpool: Liverpool University Press, 2001) 0 85323 957 6 £8.95