Between the North and the land:
road from west Siberia to Dagestan as an element of social space of translocal migrant

Kapustina E.L.

Cand. Sci. (Hist.), Junior Researcher, Department of the Caucasus, Peter the Great Museum of Anthropology and Ethnography, Russian Academy of Science; Assistant, Department of Anthropology, European University at Saint-Petersburg, Saint-Petersburg, Russia

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Kapustina E.L. Between the North and the land: road from west Siberia to Dagestan as an element of social space of translocal migrant. Sotsiologicheskie issledovaniya [Sociological Studies]. 2017. No 5. P. 26-34


The cities of oil and gas region of West Siberia have been the centers of attraction for migrants from the former Soviet Union for the past 60 years. One of the most important migratory flows in the region since the late Soviet time comes from the Russian Caucasus and migrants from the Republic of Dagestan make up a noticeable percentage of it. Analysis of the data from the field work (2011–2016), allows to characterize Dagestanian migration to Khanty-Mansiysk District as translocal, when migrants develop and maintain multiple economic and social relations simultaneously in the sending and receiving societies and thus belongs to multiple geographic localities. I offer insight into practices of migrants through the lens of the idea of translocal social space. To explain the nature of this translocal case it is necessary to show the specifics of rural communities of Dagestan as one of the most relevant social structure in the republic. In the article I describe the movements which take place there as relevant social practices making this type of migration translocal – trade activity, packages, people and dead bodies transportation. Migrants create demand for the regional products of home land as well as provide a demand. When transporting goods, not only economic benefits become important, but also regional preferences of the donor region. Solving the problems of transporting the dead bodies addresses the issue of consolidation of compatriots. Besides I pay attention to the specificity of migrant infrastructure of roads between a Northern city and a Dagestanian village as a part of translocal social space.

migration; translocality; road; mobility; North Caucasus; West Siberia; practices of migrant interactions; transnational migration


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Content No 5, 2017