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Humanitarian sciences in Siberia

2015 year, number 2

PROBLEMS OF TYPOLOGY OF ETHNOGRAPHICAL, RELIGIOUS, AND LOCAL GROUPS OF SLAVIC SETTLERS IN WESTERN SIBERIA: A MULTIDISCIPLINARY APPROACH

E.F. Fursova
Institute of Archaeology and Ethnography SB RAS, Novosibirsk 630090, prosp. ak. Lavrentiev 17
Keywords: types of ethnic and ethnographic communities, local groups, Siberian Old Believers and settlers, confessional groups

Abstract

The paper analyzes various approaches to the problem of typology of ethnographical (cultural), local and religious groups of Slavic settlers in Siberia taking into account studies of historians, ethnographers and anthropologists of the XX - early XXI centuries. The author offers her own approach to identifying and providing justification for the Old-Believer and immigrant groups in Western Siberia in terms of their origin, mechanism of development, cultural specifics. The results of research on small ethnic units of Russian (Belarusian, Ukrainian) ethnographical (cultural) groups conducted by historians, anthropologists, and philosophers, were compared with the data obtained by the physical anthropologists who greatly contributed to justification of the ethnic groups typology. According to the author’s view the ethno-cultural situation in Western Siberia is best suited for studying the nature and properties of low taxonomic units, while the future research may reveal changes in surviving ethnographical groups, as well as discover new local and confessional communities of Old-Believers and settlers. The typology of ethnographic groups in Western Siberia must be of “essential” character based on their origins, patterns of formation, resettlement, taking into account the existing mythologem of community consciousness. Each specific ethnographic, confessional or local group has its historical context, as well as a cultural “core”, which it was formed around, such as traditional cultural features for ethnographic groups, religions for religious groups (Old Believers), territorial solidarity (places of origin) for local groups (settlers of European Russia). Ethnographic groups may also differ geographically depending on cultural traits variation (Suzun chaldony, Kolyvan chaldony, Altai Kerzhaks and so on). Studies have shown that the majority of ethnographical groups in Western Siberia more or less possesses elements of self-consciousness. As a rule, original external and internal names of these groups are related with their origin, historical homeland, or reflect historical events (real or imagined) in the past.