Skip to main content

'The Last Kulak' and Other Stories of Post-Privatisation Life in Chukotka's Tundra

Buy Article:

$21.43 + tax (Refund Policy)

Privatisation of state farms in Russia precipitated a crisis in the reindeer herding economy. Chukotka once had the largest domestic reindeer herd in Russia, and the plummet in Chukotka's reindeer headcounts was steeper than anywhere else in the country. At the same time, reindeer herding in some regions of Russia, such as Yamal, remained relatively stable. This paper argues that much of the difference between Chukotka and other regions can be attributed to the particular, and very political, nature of the social relationship between local tundra-dwelling populations and the most immediate representative of the state apparatus that they face: the district administration. Using stories told by tundra-dwellers in one district of Chukotka, the paper explores the frustrations they experienced as their efforts to take more control of their own local situation were stymied by those in the bureaucracy above them. It concludes that politics and power relations should not be overlooked as a crucial factor in determining regionally-variable outcomes in post-privatisation reindeer herding in the Russian north, and can overpower or exacerbate economic and ecological factors.


Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: December 1, 2006

More about this publication?
  • Nomadic Peoples is an international journal published by the White Horse Press for the Commission on Nomadic Peoples, International Union of Anthropological and Ethnological Sciences. Its primary concerns are the current circumstances of all nomadic peoples around the world and their prospects. Its readership includes all those interested in nomadic peoples, scholars, researchers, planners and project administrators.
    Nomadic Peoples has a Journal Impact Factor (2022) of 0.9. 5 Year Impact Factor: 0.9.
  • Submit a Paper
  • Ingenta Connect is not responsible for the content or availability of external websites
  • Access Key
  • Free content
  • Partial Free content
  • New content
  • Open access content
  • Partial Open access content
  • Subscribed content
  • Partial Subscribed content
  • Free trial content