The Migration History of the Family As a Source of the Formation of Siberian Identity

Thursday, 14 July 2016: 11:30
Location: Seminarraum Geschichte 1 (Main Building)
Oral Presentation
Polina SAZONOVA, Tomsk State University, Russia
Nowadays in Russian society, intensive processes of regional identities formation as a source of new national identity are observed, and there is a Siberian quasi-nationality, which stands out among them. Numerous studies reveal unbalanced, semi-colonial relationships between Siberia and federal government, meaning the one-sided exploitation of the various region’s potential. The awareness of own secondary nature in economical and socio-cultural terms is the reason for mass migration from Siberia with more than 1 million left between the latter population census. At the same time, scholars stress the need to change the authorities’ attitudes towards Siberia for more efficient use of natural and human potential of the region in the interests of the whole country.

One of the key features of Siberia is a multi-ethnic composition of the population due to the rich region’s immigration history during the last centuries. This has resulted in the formation of so-called Siberian identity with specific, diversity-welcome traits, such as high level of ethnic tolerance, unconditional acceptance of others, the tradition of mutual aid, and significant integration potential. In order to understand comprehensively the logic of the formation of a Siberian identity, it is important to analyze it in multi-dimensional perspective, taking into account historical, spatial, cultural, biographical, political, ideological, and other aspects.

The latest research on Siberian identity reveal that on the biographical level the key prerequisites for the Siberian identity formation are family migration history, ethnicity, personal mobility, as well as individual’s involvement in the region’s life.

This study is an attempt to determine the weight of the migrstion biographical factors in the formation of the Siberian identity based on the analysis of historical data, research of Siberian sociologists and anthropologists, as well as author’s qualitative research in Tomsk, which is recognized as a center of cultural and historical development of Siberia.