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From the sound of throat singing to the sounds of shamanic practice: Structural organisation of shamanic rituals in Tuva

Novye Issledovaniâ Tuvy. 2017;0(2) DOI 10.25178/nit.2017.2.4


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Journal Title: Novye Issledovaniâ Tuvy

ISSN: 2079-8482 (Online)

Publisher: Novye Issledovaniâ Tuvy

LCC Subject Category: Social Sciences: Communities. Classes. Races

Country of publisher: Russian Federation

Language of fulltext: Russian

Full-text formats available: PDF



Malgorzata Stelmaszyk (Эдинбургский университет)


Double blind peer review

Editorial Board

Instructions for authors

Time From Submission to Publication: 18 weeks


Abstract | Full Text

This article concentrates on the characteristics of shamanic practice in Tuva, a republic within the Russian Federation. While delineating the unique features of shamanic craft, such as a lack of trance, the analysis concentrates on the significance of sound and music as indispensable elements of the shamanic repertoire. In short, the article argues that the organizational structure of the sound unit in Tuva employed in throat singing and based on the overtone-rich timbre system constitutes a wider framework of patterns of thought and behavior which underlies the organizational structure of shamanic rituals. In this way, the article shows how sounds are not only the integral feature of the shamans' communications and negotiations with spirits, but also an analytical lens for the broader understandings of shamanic practice and sociocosmic interactions in Tuva in general.