Bridging Divides: A new book on Russian Sámi politcs

The book «Bridging Divides. Ethno-political leadership among the Russian Sámi» was published as part of this project in the Fall of 2012.

Bridging Divides by Indra Overland and Mikkel Berg-Nordlie accounts for key events in the establishing phase of post-Soviet Sámi ethno-politics during the 1990s. The focus on the book is on the challenges and conflicts associated with leading a small ethno-political revival movement, and the establishment of new relationships with the Nordic Sámi afterhaving been sundered from them during the Soviet Era.


Table of contents

Chapter 1. Introduction
Chapter 2. Who are the Russian Sámi?
Chapter 3. Lost Land, Broken Culture
Chapter 4. Language Revival
Chapter 5. Educational Re-orientation
Chapter 6. Political Representation
Chapter 7. Conclusions

Appendixes: Glossary and Abbreviations; Sámi population estimates; Nuclear bomb testing on the Kola Peninsula; Inter-ethnic relations; Language; Three Intertwined Social Problems; The complexity of ethnic identity.
Reviews and appraisals for «Bridging Divides»
«…a comprehensive, trustworthy and I would even say authoritative soure of data and good analysis about Russian Sámi ethnic politics»
– Vladislava Vladimirova (Max Planck Institute), Review in Acta Borealia 30/1/2013.

«This very well-documented study concerns how problems connected to the collapse of the Soviet Union affected the existence of the Russian Sámi. …a detailed analysis of human efforts to create Sámi ethno-political organizations and rebuild Sámi culture, whilst also integrating this project in the neighboring countries’ political structures»
– Helena Jerman (University of Helsinki), Review in Nordisk Østforum 3/2013.

«..an important case study… of an indigenous revitalisation movement and thereby allows for comparison with similar developments not only among the officially recognized forty [indigenous peoples of Russia] but also with other indigenous peoples in industrialized countries… It is a valuable contribution to the literature on language loss and bilingualism»
Stephan Dudeck (Arctic Centre, University of Lapland).

«[A] close and sophisticated analysis of the almost impossible project of restoring a cultural tradition, a lost language and a way of life balancing precariously under harsh and marginal econological and economic conditions. …[It is] well written, well organized and well documented.»
– Jens-Ivar Nergaard (University of Tromsø – Arctic University of Norway)

Buy it from Berghahn Books or from Amazon,
or your local academic bookstore.