"Mixed Messages": The Survival of the Buryat Language with Kathryn Graber

January 5th, 2021 · 34 mins 59 secs

About this Episode

Амар мэндээ or hello and Happy New Year! Dr. Kathryn Graber of Indiana University Bloomington joins the show to talk about her research on the Buryat language and minority-language media in Russia’s Buryat territories, a multilingual region of eastern Siberia on the Mongolian border. Her fifteen years of research in this area is the foundation of her new book, Mixed Messages: Mediating Native Belonging in Asian Russia. Enjoy! Ехэ баярлаа!

Kathryn Graber, PhD, is a linguist, sociocultural anthropologist, and assistant professor of Anthropology and Central Eurasian Studies at Indiana University Bloomington. Dr. Graber’s geographic focus is on post-Soviet Eurasia, and her research lies at the intersection of two clusters of problems. The first is indigenous language shift, endangerment, and revitalization, which she has been studying in Russia’s Buryat territories, a multilingual region of eastern Siberia on the Mongolian border, since 2005. This research was the basis for her first book, Mixed Messages: Mediating Native Belonging in Asian Russia (Cornell University Press, 2020). Mixed Messages shows how language and the production, circulation, and consumption of media are practices by which residents of the Buryat territories perform and negotiate competing possible identities. The book integrates production data from Buryat media institutions with consumption/reception data from audiences and linguistic analyses of texts and transcripts, employing a novel holistic approach to elucidate how the language used in institutional settings circulates from and into other domains of daily life. The second, related cluster concerns materiality, technology, circulation, and notions of property. Dr. Graber is
particularly interested in how value is interactionally negotiated across different nodes in a global commodity chain, which she has been studying in the Mongolian cashmere industry since 2014. She is also currently working on a large collaborative project on the cultural afterlives and anticipatory pre-lives of infrastructural projects in Siberia.

Mixed Messages: https://www.cornellpress.cornell.edu/book/9781501750519/mixed-messages/#bookTabs=3
As part of Cornell Press’ “Top 10 Most Viewed Books This Month" special, you can use the promo code 09TRENDING to save 44% on a copy of Mixed Messages. After this special promotion ends, you can use 09FLYER to save 30% (in the UK, Europe, Asia,
Middle East, & Africa, use code CS09FLYER).

Join the Siberian Collaborative Research Network: https://siberiannetwork.com/

Check out Golosa, Chicago's Russian folk choir with whom Dr. Graber first traveled to Buryatia in 2001: http://www.golosa.org/

Katya used Телекомпания АТВ’s Буряадаар дуугараял (“Let’s talk Buryat”) series to learn a little Buryat. You can find the 16-part lesson series (taught in Russian) here: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLRwkvBgxoEEmblwL2Z5-Ime8K_Ip5cflq

For folks without knowledge of Russian and knowledge of English, you can check out SRAS’s Folkways “Talking Buryat Phrasebook” here: http://folkways.today/talking-buryat-phrasebook/

NOTE: This episode was recorded November 20, 2020 via Zoom.

Host/Associate Producer: Kathryn Yegorov-Crate
Co-Producer: Matthew Orr (Connect: facebook.com/orrrmatthew)
Co-Producer: Tom Rehnquist (Connect: Twitter @RehnquistTom)
Associate Producer: Lera Toropin
Associate Producer: Cullan Bendig
Assistant Producer: Samantha Farmer
Assistant Producer: Katherine Birch
Assistant Producer: Zach Johnson
Recording, Editing, and Sound Design: Michelle Daniel

Music Producer: Charlie Harper (Connect: facebook.com/charlie.harper.1485 Instagram: @charlieharpermusic) www.charlieharpermusic.com (Main Theme by Charlie Harper and additional background music by Charlie Harper, Ketsa,)

Executive Producer & Creator: Michelle Daniel (Connect: facebook.com/mdanielgeraci Instagram: @michelledaniel86) www.msdaniel.com

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