Arctic Pastoralist Sakha
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The Sakha - traditional cattle and horse pastoralists and one of the largest ethnic minorities in Siberia - hold a unique position in human adaptation. This book focuses on the cultural history, productivity, and flexibility of the human-nature relationships long cultivated by the Sakha, and studies the lives of the Sakha in post-socialist Russia. Hiroki Takakura analyses how a culture was formed and experienced changes, and how it is maintained today, and combines multiple anthropological perspectives to illustrate how the Sakha have adapted as their society has become increasingly interconnected with global forces since the fall of the Soviet Union. As an ethnography of Sakha society - and of regional evolution and human adaptability in an Arctic environment - this book studies the formation of cultural diversity and uncovers unknown cultural histories in Asia across the Arctic.
This is a pioneering overview of a little known pastoral system in eastern Siberia. In the Sakha Republic's unique system of permafrost lakes and meadows, human practices are directly linked to the way that the landscape offers itself as a host. This fundamental work should command wide attention by regional specialists and all those interested in local forms of pastoralism. -- David G. Anderson, U. of Aberdeen
The key importance of this book lies in its main message, emphasizing the necessity of the study of the Sakha people's adaptation to one of the coldest regions on our planet. Professor Takakura's work constitutes a scrupulous analysis of available literature and a visualization of examples from everyday rural life beyond what is often seen in research fieldwork. -- Vanda Ignatyeva, Inst. of Humanities and Indigenous Studies of the North, Yakutsk
"The book presents a fascinating analysis of the horse and cattle breeding culture of the Sakha. It is a scrupulous discussion of the complex interaction between the Soviet-style economic organization, post-Soviet market economy and animism. The rationality behind the traditional collectivism that works under a market economy is well documented and elucidated." -- Victor Shnirelman, Inst. of Ethnology and Anthropology, Moscow
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