2015 Summer

Visiting speakers

In colloboration with the Department of Anthropology, Arctic Domus sponsored several seminars by distinguished speakers or by members of the project on research themes related to the project. The talks were held on Thursdays in room F61 Edward Wright Building from 15.00-17.00 unless otherwise noted.

4th June 2015 - Charles Stépanoff



Charles Stépanoff is the Maître de conférences, Chair of  "Northern Asia and the Arctic Religions" , Religious Sciences Section at the École Pratique des Hautes Études. He is also a member of the Laboratory of Social Anthropology (Paris). He will be visiting the Department of Anthropology between 3-6 June. 

Charles gave a formal talk on The origins of reindeer-human co-domestication: Siberian mythologies and animal desire on the 4th of June.


A growing number of authors are claiming that anthropology can no longer remain anthropocentrized, and should start taking seriously non-Western ontologies which recognize non-human perspectives. However, these kinds of studies often remain focused on human representations about non-humans, which may ironically produce anthropocentric accounts of non-anthropocentric ways of understanding.

In Siberia, reindeer herding groups are hybrid communities in which humans and animals adapt to each other and are bounded by shared familiar landscapes and nomadic routes. Nevertheless, most explanatory models of reindeer domestication are placing human strategies at the center of the mechanism. A hybrid understanding is needed in order to account for the triadic dynamic interactions between human preferences, animal desires and landscape transformations. Taking seriously Siberian myths about domestic reindeer and associating them to reindeer ethology and new archeological approaches will help to produce a hybrid model of reindeer-human co-domestication. 

The seminar took place on 4 June  (Thursday), F61.