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27-31 August 2019
Poznań, Poland
Europe/Warsaw timezone
programme last update: 23 August 2019
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Contribution Paper

Poznań, Poland - Morasko Kampus, room: 2.104

Oblivion and memory in the metis rural communities of Zabaikalie region



Primary authors

  • Vera GALINDABAEVA (Sociological Institute of the Federal Center of Theoretical and Applied Sociology of the Russian Academy of Sciences)


Memory actualizes events and traditions that unite members of the group. Oblivion, in turn, helps them to hide those events and memories that undermine the integrity of the group. In the article, we consider how oblivion becomes a strategy for maintaining ethnoreligious boundaries in case of the metis rural community. We analyze how the reproduction of the ethno-religious borders of the two metis groups (Semeyskie and Karymy), that have common ancestors and the history of cohabitation in one rural community, occurs. The Karymy or descendats of the Buryats that were baptized in 18-19 century represent one of the oldest metis populations of Zabaikalie region. Semeiskie only in several locations of Buryatia as Khasurta and Unegetei also took their origin from baptized Buryats. A research demonstrates that oblivion not memory helps to maintain ethnoreligious boundaries between these groups. The fieldwork was conducted within the framework of the case study strategy that included questionnaire survey, semi-structured interview, observation, document analysis. The results of a research show that oblivion in theses villagies is associated with the passing of the older generation, as well as with the processes of formation of subethnic identity of Semeyskie in Buryatia. Bogardus scale analysis demostrates that the longest distance is between Semeiskie, Karymy and Buryats. The minimal social distance Semeyskie and Karymy shows with Russians.