The department of Russian ethnography
The Department of Russian Ethnography
Contact phone 007(812)570-58-01
Dmitrii A. Baranov, Ph.D., Department’s head
Isabella I. Shangina, Ph.D., professor, main research fellow
Alexander B. Ostrovsky, Ph.D., professor, leading research fellow
Elena L. Madlevskya, Ph.D. leading research fellow
Natalia N. Sosnina, leading research fellow
Olga A.Baranova, senior research fellow
Tat’jana A. Zimina, senior research fellow
Olga N. Glazkova, research fellow
Valentina C.Kuznetzova, research fellow
Stanislav N.Petryashin, junior research fellow
Yana L. Lymar’, junior research fellow
The department studies traditional Russian culture in 17th-20th centuries. Evidence from the earlier periods is examined when diachronic analysis of certain cultural phenomenon is required. The study of traditional culture focuses on detection of distinctive patterns of its material and spiritual aspects. Special emphasis is made on particular elements of traditional economy, mainly on clothes making and related activities (embroidery, lace making, pearl and beads work) as well as on the parts of socio-normative complex, mainly festivals and rituals.
Also important topic of the Department’s research activity is gender studies and studies of age social groups. This topic is relatively new for the Russian ethnology and museum work, but exceptionally promising. Traditional Russian culture slightly studied from the key dichotomies “woman-man”, “old-young” opens broad perspectives for such research.
One more interesting and relatively new research topic is the study of traditional Russian forms of religion: Orthodox Christianity and Pre-Christian beliefs. Religion is studied as part of Russian peoples’ culture and main factor of people’s spiritual life. Department examines contribution of the Orthodox Christianity to spiritual bases of Russian culture and researches the ways of their absorption in people’s milieu. It studies peoples’ version of the Orthodox Christianity, so called Peoples Orthodox Christianity and influence of the Orthodox concepts on traditional cosmovision, life circle rituals, and calendar. Interaction between the Orthodox Christians and Old Believers is also researched.
One of important department activities is the study of material objects. It’s realized from different points of view:1) source study when the entire collection or its parts are examined with purpose of evaluating their scientific and exhibition value; 2) ethnography of object, when every artifact is studied as material object, that is its substance, material and form are examined alongside with technique; 3) ethosemiotics, that is from the point of view of object’s semantic functions in particular ethnocultural continuum.