Article Information

NORTHERN INDIGENOUS YOUTH: IDENTITY CONSTRUCTING STRATEGIES

Svetlana Tulaevaa (svett07@mail.ru), Elena Gladunb, Olga Zakharovab

a North-Western Institute of Management, Russian Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Saint Petersburg, Russia

b Tyumen State University, Tyumen, Russia

Citation: Tulaeva S., Gladun E., Zakharova O. (2022) Molodezh korennykh malochislennykh narodov severa: strategii konstruirovaniya identichnosti [Northern indigenous youth: identity construction strategies]. Zhurnal sotsiologii i sotsialnoy antropologii [The Journal of Sociology and Social Anthropology], 25(1): 168–189 (in Russian). https://doi.org/10.31119/jssa.2022.25.1.6

Abstract. Currently, local cultures are actively integrated into the global world, which is accompanied by the interpenetration of various cultural practices and the “stitching of cultural patches”. In this regard, the question of how exactly this “cross-linking of cultures” takes place is of particular interest. In this article, we try to answer this question by studying the local communities of the Russian North. The article is devoted to the problem of constructing and maintaining identity among young people belonging to the indigenous small-numbered peoples of the North. On the one hand, young people are focused on the modern style of life, on the other hand, they position themselves as representatives of traditional culture and strive to maintain contact with it. The paper analyzes the main strategies of young people from the indigenous population of the North, allowing them to balance between their belonging to the communities associated with the traditional way of life, and the modern world. These include: parallel worlds strategy, explorer strategy, and global nomad strategy. The first strategy is an attempt to combine the traditional way of life and work in the company, while the other two strategies are more focused on getting out of traditional communities and transmitting knowledge about them to the outside world. Special attention is paid to social rituals aimed at reinterpretation of previous practices and referred to in the academic community as “reinvention of traditions”. The latter occurs through the mixing of various cultural practices, the transfer of traditions from one environment to another, and the reorientation of traditional rituals to an external audience. This demonstrates the “fluidity” of cultures and their constant adaptation to a changing external context. The work was carried out on the basis of a qualitative methodology. The main methods were semi-structured interviews and document analysis.

Keywords: indigenous small-numbered peoples of the North, identity, invention of traditions, identity maintenance strategies, youth, traditional communities.

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