Our Recent Publications
The volume examines complex intersections of environmental conditions, geopolitical tensions and local innovative reactions characterising ‘the Arctic’ in the early twenty-first century. What happens in the region (such as permafrost thaw or methane release) not only sweeps rapidly through local ecosystems but also has profound global implications. Bringing together a unique combination of authors who are local practitioners, indigenous scholars and international researchers, the book provides nuanced views of the social consequences of climate change and environmental risks across human and non-human realms.
The focus of this book is on the phenomenon of cursing in shamanic practice and everyday life in Tuva, a former Soviet republic in Siberia. Based on extensive anthropological fieldwork where the author interacted with a wide range of people involved in cursing practices, the book examines Tuvans’ lived experience of cursing and shamanism, thereby providing deep insights into Tuvans’ intimate and social worlds. It highlights especially the centrality of sound: how interactions between humans and non-humans are brought about through an array of sonic phenomena, such as musical sounds, sounds within words and non-linguistic vocalisations, and how such sonic phenomena are a key part of dramatic cursing events and wider shamanic performance and ritual, involving humans and spirits alike. Overall, the book reveals a great deal about occult practices and about social change in post-Soviet Tuva.
Kruglikova, N. & Cooper, D. 2022. (Accepted/In press). Psychogeography Reimagined. The Journal of Global Indigeneity.
2022 American Anthropological Association Annual Meeting – Nov. 9-13, Seattle, WA.
Our Panel: Weathering Uncertainty: Mitigation, Adaptation and (Co)production of Knowledge.
Wildfires, Satellites and Foretelling Reindeer: Readings and Mis-Readings of Environmental Uncertainty in Northeast Siberia
Olga Ulturgasheva (University of Manchester)
Curious Government: Environmental management and managing bureaucracy about the English countryside in uncertain times
Jonathan Woolley (DEFRA, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, UK)
Certainty of Uncertainty
Nina Kruglikova (University of Manchester)
Living dream: uncertain cosmological crossings and climate change among the Nanai in the Siberian Far East
Mally Stelmaszyk (University of Manchester)
Our Discussant: Barbara Bodenhorn (University of Cambridge)
Dickinson College (Carlisle, PA) presents, “Sliding Earth: Arctic Indigenous Cryo-Worlds, Environmental Risks and Human-Non-Human Collaborations,” with Dr. Olga Ulturgasheva and Sayan Ulturgashev, September 2022.
Accounts of dramatic environmental change offered by Arctic Indigenous communities and international climate scientists have recently pointed to a profound sense of unpredictability generated by the rapidly disappearing cryosphere. There are reports of the unprecedented extinction of ice-dependent worlds and of increasing likelihood for thousands of towns and villages to be threatened by rising sea levels and loss of the sea ice. All of the above will only intensify in the course of the next couple of decades, with methane released by rapidly thawing permafrost. The continuous and rapacious extraction of subsurface resources makes it increasingly clear that an ice-free Arctic is no longer located in the distant future but is lurking just around the corner. This lecture will examine the ways Arctic/Siberian Indigenous communities respond to unpredictable climate events and the knowledge, strategies, and human-non-human collaborations they draw from to face environmental calamities.
Some words Sayan Ulturgashev, Indigenous Choreographer, about Dickinson’s Ballet Certificate Program’s performance of Eveny Melody:
My name is Sayan Ulturgashev, I am an indigenous classical ballet dancer and choreographer. It has been my huge honour to prepare and work together with Dickinson college on this special event – the ballet piece called “Eveny Melody” that will be performed in front of you right now. This event is special not only for Dickinson college but for all Siberian indigenous artists and especially for our native Eveny reindeer herding community. The entire project was completed in collaboration with indigenous artists and singers from Siberian Eveny community. The indigenous artist designed the costume for each dancer individually, the songs were performed by Siberian Eveny community members upon my request specially for this performance.
We, indigenous artists, worked together with the Director of Dickinson ballet program, Sarah Skaggs and stagecraft expert, Sherry McCombs, and everyone who were involved in production, especially brilliant students who worked very hard over last month to make sure the ballet performance happens tonight!
Their hard work is an act of solidarity with Siberian indigenous communities who suffered colonial violence and oppression for centuries. The silent genocide committed against them continues today. And the very fact that the performers whom I auditioned, interviewed and invited to dance in this ballet are the students of Dickinson college is very much a powerful expression of their support for all indigenous people around the world, indigenous arts and creativity.