Rud' A.  

Deer in the modern culture of the Eastern Khanty

ABSTRACT: Deer is one of the symbols of the traditional culture of the indigenous inhabitants of Western Siberia deserved. Taiga reindeer husbandry played a significant role in the life of the Eastern Khanty, living on the right bank of the Ob in the basins of the Lyamin, Pim, Tromjegan, Agan rivers for most of the 20th century. The foci of taiga reindeer husbandry remained until the 1980s on the rivers Bolshoi Yugan, Maly Yugan, Salym and Demyanka, despite the lesser importance of reindeer husbandry in the left bank of the Ob. Reindeer herding of the Eastern Khanty was of great importance as a food resource and as sacrificial animals for traditional rituals throughout the 20th century. The complex changes of the last 30-40 years, caused by the industrial development and urbanization of the Middle Ob region, the political, legal and economic transformation of post-Soviet Russia, have a great influence on the traditional culture of the Eastern Khanty. These processes have caused changes in the relationship between man and deer in different areas. On the one hand, transport reindeer husbandry has given way to mechanical vehicles at present. On the other hand, the importance of deer as a food resource and as a sacrificial animal in traditional religious rites is preserved among the Eastern Khanty living in the taiga. However, today, examples of the use of symbolic images of sacrificial deer as a sacrifice to deities are observed in the ritual sphere. Adaptation processes in the Eastern Khanty have an active influence on rethinking the place of a deer in the space of culture. In these cases, the deer acquires more and more symbolic meanings associated with tradition.

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