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Klejn L.S. Ethnogenesis and archaeology (Abstract)

In print at the philological faculty of St. Petersburg University, in Russian

By Leo S. Klejn


This book (not yet published, but accepted by the Publishers of Philological faculty of St. Petersburg university) is a collection of articles by Prof. L. S. Klejn on the subject of ethnogenesis, i. e. the origins of peoples. These 46 articles written at different times from the ’60s onwards  were mostly published in various specialist journals and collections, frequently foreign, and as such were inaccessible to the majority of readers. A number of these articles, for various reasons, have never before been published. They are all published here in Russian.


 Ethnogenetic problems are always of interest, both to the public and to scholars, and always provoke debate, since they touch upon people’s emotions and political interests. However, as data (especially archaeological) has accumulated and as methods of research have become more reliable, it is possible to take positions on these questions with greater confidence. The book aims to reveal such positions.


The author is known as a theoretician of archaeology. His monographs in this area (Introduction totheoretical archaeology, Archaeological typology, Archaeological records, Principles of archaeology a. o.) have not aimed to touch every major specific problem in archaeology. In particular, in these monographs problems of ethnogenesis were set aside, although the author has done much work on these problems. In order to present his views on these problems in total he decided to reedit re-edit his articles on this subject for this collection.


The articles are divided into sections. The first of which is devoted to the definition of the concept ‘ethnos’. The meaning of this concept remains debatable: the author makes clear his own position in relation to that of Lev N. Gumilev and Yu. V. Bromley (for the most part these articles are previously unpublished).


The second section is composed of articles that analyse the, many times criticised but enduring and, in various forms, revived doctrine of Kossinna and his followers in the context of domestic (Russian) archaeology.


The third section is composed of articles that make clear the author’s understanding of the theory of ethnogenesis. The author suggests a new approach to the problems of ethnogenesis.


The fourth section is composed of articles on the most controversial area of ethnogenetic problems, – on migrations. The author defends the necessity of studying migrations and believes that many migrations are as yet undetected because of the jaundiced view of many archaeologists and their anxiety to avoid the accusation of Kossinism. He explains and substantiates methods of revealing migrations by archaeological means.


The fifth section is composed of articles on specific problems of ethnogenesis – on Aryans, Germans and Tocharians.


The articles in this collection are built upon a vast literature on the subject, in various languages. For the sake of brevity the bibliography is limited to a single list, and for readers’ convenience the book is supplied with indices.


The book (of ca. 800 pages) will be of interest to archaeologists and ethnographers, and to scholars and students, as well as to all who are interested in the origins of peoples.

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I. Ethnos

1.       Ethnos  (Genealogical anthropology II. Ethno-anthropology. A Lecture from the course ‘Cultural anthropology’)

2.       Background To the debate on ethnos

3.       Definition of ethnos: Critical survey of Soviet views

4.       ‘Ethnos’ and ‘culture’ in the Erevan symposium of 1978

5.       The Ethics of ethnogenetics. The Bitter thoughts of a fastidious reviewer on the doctrine of L.N. Gumilev

II. Kossinna and Kossinnism

1.       Archaeology in the saddle. Kossinna from the distance of 70 years

2.       Kossinna’s outlook on the eve of the 21th century

3.       Archaeology and ideology: East Germany under two dictatorships

III. Ethnogenesis

1.       The origins of Slavs: setting the question

2.       Ethnogenesis and archaeology: the new approach

3.       Ethnogenesis as history of culture under archaeological consideration: a new approach

4.       The European Neolithic as a whole

5.       Archaeology and ethnography: the problem of confrontation

6.       Ethnogenesis and the model of a genealogical tree: the problem of co-operation between archaeology and linguistics

7.       Strategy of synthesis in the research of ethnogenesis (the integration of disciplines and the synthesis of sources in the solution of ethnogenetic problems)

8.       Problem of heredity (continuity) and funeral rites

IV. Migrations and migrationism

1.       Archaeological signs of migration

2.       Migration: archaeological signs

3.       Generators of peoples

4.       Archaeologists and migrations: the problem of attitude. A response to H. Härke

V. Particular problems of ethnogenesis

1.       Cyprus and Crete in the Archaeologia mundi

2.       Phenomenon MM III

3.       Invasion from the North to Middle-Minoan Crete: evaluating the reliability of the hypothesis

4.       To the historical interpretation of “ochre graves”: the polemics against A. Häusler

5.       The interpretation of common burials with ochre in the steppe barrows of the Bronze Age

6.       Where did the Aryans of India come from?

7.       The Coming of the Aryans: who were they and where were they from?

8.       Ancestors of Indian Aryans (from Dnepr to Indus)

9.       From Tigrovaya Balka to Matsya Purana (Traces of non-Vedic funeral rites among Indo-Aryans in the light of Steppe and Central-Asian archaeology)

10.     Traces of non-Vedic funeral rites among Indo-Aryans (synthesising archaeology with folklore studies and mythology)

11.     From the Danube to Indus. Reflections of urn rites in the folklore of Indo-Aryans and the problem of Phrygian migration

12.     Dogs and birds in the eschatological notions cosmology of the Aryans

13.     Polemical notes on Aryans and the Andronovo culture. Review of the book The most ancient cattle-breeders from the Urals to Tien Shan by E. E. Kuzmina

14.     The Ways of Aryans. Review of the book Aryans – way to the South by E. E. Kuzmina, and polemical notes

15.     The origin of zero, or the most ancient evolution of dice games, between the Indus and the Danube

16.     Archaeological traces of the most ancient Indo-Aryans in the Black Sea area

17.     Maykop: Asia? Europe?

18.    Early Indo-Europeans in the Caucasus and in the North-Pontic steppes

19.     On the steppe origins of Indo-Europeans (a propos David Anthony’s book Horse, wheel and language)

20.     Greek-Aryans in the Northern Black Sea area

21.     Indo-Aryans and the Scythian world: the common sources of ideology

22.     Indo-Aryans on the steppe

23.     The Migration of Tocharians in the light of archaeology

24.     Once more on Tocharian migration

25.     Regressive purification and exemplary consideration (polemical remarks on means of integrating archaeology with linguistics in the problem of the ethnic identification of monuments), or the review on Gothen und Scandinavia by R. Hachmann

26.     Germans in the Archaeologia mundi


Indices: names and subjects

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