road, forest, log house with huge haystacks and woodpile adjacent

Settling Siberia

In the last decades under Tsarist rule, millions of Russian, Belarusian and Ukrainian peasants quit their home villages in the western empire to head east — to Siberia — for free land and a fresh start. Many of their descendants still live in the villages founded by their forebears, often preserving the ways and language of the original settlers. As part of the project “Dynamics of Folklore Traditions” this team will collect songs, stories, beliefs and rituals that survived transplantation to the village of Tagna, Siberia in order to compare them with the traditional lore of the “mother” villages in Ukraine and Belarus. What changes? What stays the same? What forces are at work in preservation, change or abandonment of traditional ways? The work of this team will contribute to the answers.

The expedition will start in Moscow and end in Irkutsk. Apply by May 19, 2020.

Photo by N.I. Belova