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The Buryat Village of Tory in the 1990s: Social and Cultural Re-adaptation in a Small Village Community

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image of Inner Asia

This paper considers whether Tory in Buryatia can survive as a community. It is argued that Tory came to be a unified community under the Soviet regime from the 1930s onwards. As Soviet institutions strengthened, the earlier Buryat society lost its integrity and came to consists of familial groups isolated from and opposed to public life, yet economically dependent on the collective farm. With the 1990s outside support was withdrawn from the collective farm. There is a real possibility that if it collapses altogether, the household economies will collapse with it. It is argued that a large proportion of people in the village have become psychologically accustomed to dependency on the state and may be incapable of self-reliance. Meanwhile, the young generation is oriented to urban and outside culture and may drop out of any process of village adaptation to the new economic conditions.


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