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The Kalmyks.


The Kalmyks.

Guchinova, Elza-Bair. Trans. by David C. Lewis.



260 pages



Causcasus world series


Guchinova (Institute of Ethnology and Anthropology, Russian Academy of Sciences) and Lewis (Mongolia and Inner Asia Studies Unit, U. of Cambridge, UK) present a historical-cultural introduction to the Kalmyk people of southern Russia, who combine a heritage of Mahayana Buddhism and a historical past rooted in the Mongolian Khanates. Aside from the beginning discussion of the Kalmyks' origins, the material generally focuses on there experiences and way of life during the Soviet and contemporary eras. Opening chapters describe their experiences with forced deportation in the 1940s and 1950s and explore more recent issues of diaspora and identity. Later chapters are devoted to language and ethno-linguistics; traditional economy and dwelling; family and gender stereotypes; life cycle rites; food and dress; handicrafts and decorative-applied arts; religion, the calendar, and festivals; folk arts and epics; and folk consciousness and national identity.

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Publication:Reference & Research Book News
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Nov 1, 2006
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