The Long Riders' Guild Press

Beyond Siberia

Sale price Price $19.78 Regular price

ISBN: 9780340562734
Publisher: The Long Riders' Guild Press
Publication Date: 1993-05-20
Number of pages: 192
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Beyond the Tsar and the Soviet Union’s notorious penal colony of Siberia lies Russia’s own Far East, a vast territory stretching east to the Bering Strait and Alaska and south to the islands Russia disputes with Japan. It is a land of exiles and their outcast descendants, of scientists and would-be exploiters of its oil, gold and caviar. It is also home to various indigenous reindeer-herding peoples whose way of life was rapidly being extinguished under the steamroller of communist state education until perestroika acknowledged these ethnic peoples. Foreign travel became possible and Christina Dodwell was one of the first to explore Kamchatka, that exposed peninsular reaching a thousand kilometres south into the Pacific. She chose to travel during the last months of winter, learning to herd reindeer and drive both reindeer and dogs, skiing frozen rivers, meeting vulcanologists and geologists working in the geyser region of the south. She also tracked bears on a preserve usually forbidden to outsiders. In addition, Christina travelled with a dance troupe entertaining the scattered communities of reindeer herdsmen, while a man from the ministry on the same helicopter explained why there was no cash to pay them. Staying with these native peoples in their reindeer-skin tents gave Christina an opportunity to do what she does best: finding out about the minutiae of their daily life, listening to their stories and legends and discovering a world still ruled by an animist religion the state has never managed to suppress.

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