Indigenous peoples in the Russian Far East are engaged in vibrant cultural and linguistic resurgence and revitalization through their community and regional organizations. Through the activities of these organizations, a computer-aided cultural mapping project was initiated in collaboration with indigenous villages along the Kamchatka Peninsula, working with youth and elders to map out the histories of special cultural places. The project utilized innovative participatory methodologies using Google Earth and related Google mapping tools, which are freely accessible and desired for use in the communities, providing an accessible, low-cost, easy to-use computer application for detailed digital cultural mapping. This article elaborates on the use of these technologies to empower a community-based collaborative research project and reflects on critical issues in aligning community, corporate, and scholarly objectives in successful projects.
Collaborative Digital Mapping with the Itelmen Peoples
Brian Thom, Benedict J. Colombi and Tatiana Degai
Social pressure has been one of the core factors affecting choices in religious practices among indigenous peoples of Siberia in the context of drastic contemporary changes. Until the mid-1990s, in some isolated groups with elders practicing shamanism an individual choice of religion operated in a traditional way. However, in the process of becoming a society open to external religious influences broadening religious and cultural communication has led to the popularization of new religious preferences within indigenous societies. In the course of these changes both religious praxis is changing along with the content of social pressure. Previously unanimous public support of traditional religious praxis is becoming a conflicted discourse concerning expanded religious choices.
Hugh Beach, Dmitri Funk, and Lennard Sillanpää, eds., Post-Soviet Transformations: Politics of Ethnicity and Resource Use in Russia Anna Bara
Susan A. Crate and Mark Nuttall, eds., Anthropology and Climate Change: From Encounters to Actions Zareen Pervez Bharucha
Benjamin Isitt, From Victoria to Vladivostok. Canada’s Siberian Expedition, 1917–1919 J. L. Black
U. K. Kuznetsova, The Dictionary of Tuvan Culture: Angloiazychnyi slovar’ tuvinskoi kul’tury Alexander D. King
Yu. V. Popkov and E. A. Tyugashev, Filosofiia Severa: Korenye Malochislennye Narody Severa v Stsenariiakh Miroustroistva [Philosophy of the North: Indigenous Peoples of the North in World Order Scenarios] Karl Mertens
Douglas Rogers, The Old Faith and the Russian Land: A Historical Ethnography of Ethics in the Urals David Z. Scheffel
Alexander B. Dolitsky
This review of the traditional narratives of the indigenous people of the Chukchi and Kamchatka Peninsulas identifies major genres, motifs, plots, and subjects found in Siberian Yupik, Chukchi, Kerek, Koryak, and Itelmen narrative folklore, as well as specific features of the folklore of each of the peoples of the Chukotka-Kamchatka region. In addition to discussing the subjects and motifs found in the narrative tales from Chukotka and Kamchatka, the article reviews developments surrounding the typology and classification of oral traditions of the indigenous cultures of the region and the overall value of the tales as a prehistoric and ethnographic source. This survey will be of interest to those fond of traditional narratives of the Russian Far East, as well as to specialists interested in comparative-typological research of oral narratives in anthropology.
Cyclic Passing of Knowledge among the Indigenous Communities of the Eurasian North
Tero Mustonen and Ari Lehtinen
This article examines the mechanisms and manners of maintaining the communal knowledge systems of the indigenous peoples of the circumpolar North. This is accomplished by paying attention to the concerns of distinguished community elders who have experienced the entwining of indigenous traditions and modernization during their lives. The article also introduces the concept of earthview, identifying the ethical and spiritual insights that inform the community-specific everyday skills of living in the North. The conclusion highlights the human/nonhuman cycles of intergenerational knowledge renewal that are mostly practical and oral by nature. The emergence of new elders is therefore critically grounded on the personal and communal skills of passing on the intimate knowledge of sensing changes in nature. By emphasizing the role of oral communication we underline that this knowledge (of earthviewing) only remains while being shared in everyday conditions and routines of land and life. We dedicate this article to the memory of Professor Vasilii A. Robbek.
Nicole Gombay, Making a Living: Place, Food and Economy in an Inuit Community Amber Lincoln
Marc Brightman, Vanessa Elisa Grotti, and Olga Ulturgasheva, eds., Animism in Rainforest and Tundra: Personhood, Animals, Plants and Things in Contemporary Amazonia and Siberia Michael A. Uzendoski
Sonja Luehrmann, Secularism Soviet Style: Teaching Atheism and Religion in a Volga Republic Mark Calder
Tanya Argounova-Low, The Politics of Nationalism in the Republic of Sakha (Northeastern Siberia), 1900-2000: Ethnic Conflicts under the Soviet Regime Anna Bara
Sarah Mehlop Strong, Ainu Spirits Singing: The Living World of Chiri Yukie's Ainu Shin'y sh César Enrique Giraldo Herrera
Olga M. Cooke, ed., Gulag Studies, Volume 1 Norman Prell
Anne Ross, Kathleen Pickering Sherman, Jeffrey G. Snodgrass, Henry D. Delcore, and Richard Sherman, Indigenous Peoples and the Collaborative Stewardship of Nature: Knowledge Binds and Institutional Conflicts Jan Peter Laurens Loovers
Anatoly M. Khazanov and Günther Schlee, eds., Who Owns the Stock? Collective and Multiple Property Rights in Animals (vol. 5) Germain Meulemans
Books Available for Review
Dig Less, Catalog More
Julia A. King
Legacy collections are an increasingly valued source of information for researchers interested in the study and interpretation of colonialism in the Chesapeake Bay region of North America. Through the reexamination of 34 archaeological collections ranging in date from 1500 through 1720, researchers, including the author, have been able to document interactions among Europeans, Africans, and indigenous people in this part of the early modern Atlantic. We could do this only because we turned to existing collections; no single site could reveal this complex story. This article summarizes the major findings from this work and describes the pleasures and challenges of comparative analysis using existing collections. Collections-based research can also be used to inform fieldwork, so the legacy collections of tomorrow are in as good shape as possible. Indeed, collections-based work reveals the need for a critical dialogue concerning the methods, methodology, and ethics of both collections- and field-based research.
Museums, Power, Knowledge
Michel Foucault argues that truth is not to be emancipated from power. Given that museums have played a central role in these “regimes of truth,” Foucault’s work was a reference point for the debates around “the new museology” in the 1980s and remains so for contemporary debates in the field. In this introduction to a new volume of selected essays, the use of Foucault’s work in my previous research is considered in terms of the relations between museums, heritage, anthropology, and government. In addition, concepts from Pierre Bourdieu, science and technology studies, Actor Network Theory, assemblage theory, and the post-Foucaultian literature on governmentality are employed to examine various topics, including the complex situation of Indigenous people in contemporary Australia.
Indigenous rights and political participation in Venezuela
English abstract: The indigenous people of Venezuela, long excluded from political participation, registered a whole set of rights within the new constitution in 1999. However, the proclamation of these rights did not ensure their full implementation and, a fortiori, their purpose to protect the survival of indigenous peoples. This article presents an analysis of the processes through which indigenous rights have been allocated but poorly implemented and even substantially withdrawn. In many Latin American states, the rights that promote autonomy and self-government are actively abandoned notwithstanding cultural, political, and economic contexts be they progressive or conservative. Through this analysis, this article proposes the concept of “proclamation-denial”. While this concept is relevant for numerous Latin American countries, this article highlights the specificities of the Venezuelan case.
Spanish abstract: Los pueblos indígenas de Venezuela, históricamente excluidos de la participación política, lograron que se registrara todo un conjunto de derechos particulares dentro de la nueva constitución en 1999. Sin embargo, la proclamación de estos derechos no garantizó su plena aplicación y, a fortiori, su propósito de proteger la supervivencia de los pueblos indígenas. Este artículo analiza los procesos por los cuales los derechos indígenas han sido legalmente asignados pero débilmente implementados, y hasta desconocidos sustancialmente. En muchos estados latinoamericanos, los derechos que promueven la autonomía y el autogobierno son activamente abandonados, y esto que el contexto cultural, político y económico sea progresista o conservador. A través de este análisis, este artículo propone el concepto de «proclamación-negación». Si bien este concepto es relevante para numerosos países de América Latina, el texto destaca las especificidades del caso venezolano.
French abstract: Longtemps exclus de la participation politique, les autochtones du Venezuela ont su inscrire tout un ensemble de droits particuliers au sein de la nouvelle constitution en 1999. La proclamation de ces droits n’a cependant pas garanti leur pleine application ni, a fortiori, son objectif de protéger la survivance des peuples autochtones. Cet article présente une analyse des processus par lesquels les droits autochtones ont été attribués mais faiblement implémentés, et ont même substantiellement régressé. Dans plusieurs Etats d’Amérique latine, les droits qui promeuvent l’autonomie et l’auto-gouvernement sont activement abandonnés, indépendamment du fait que le contexte culturel, politique et économique soit progressiste ou conservateur. A travers cette analyse, l’article propose le concept de «proclamation-dénégation». Tandis que ce concept est pertinent pour de nombreux pays d’Amérique latine, le texte illustre les spécificités du cas vénézuélien.
Reading Robert Kroetsch's The Lovely Treachery of Words
Many of the critical essays of the Canadian novelist, poet and theorist Robert Kroetsch, as collected in his 1989 anthology The Lovely Treachery of Words, explore the issue of how Canadian writers attempt to establish a cultural nationalism in the face of the decline of the British Empire. They are an initial expression of ideas about place and language, the problematic discourse of the 'New World', and the reinscription of First Nations peoples into the literature and culture of the Canadian nation. These are concerns which later came to be regarded as 'postcolonial' with the burgeoning of the term in the late 1980s through to the present day. However, his essays are due for reassessment in the light of recent responses to postcolonial subjectivity which critique the 'colonizer-colonized' binary as used in settler-invader contexts. This 'colonizer-colonized' binary has a troubling tendency to efface indigenous peoples. It conceals the imperialistic, land-grabbing aspects of settler-invader history by positing the settler as the true postcolonial subject, searching for a stable national identity – an authentic Canadian sense of citizenship and belonging – in the face of a cultural heritage largely defined by European imperialism.