PhD Studentship in Anthropology on 'Emerging Indigineities in the Russian North'


Home/EU fees, a maintenance stipend at RCUK rates, and the full ESRC fieldwork stipend are offered to a student to carry out research towards the PhD as part of the 3-year ESRC funded project entitled 'Etnos: A life history of the etnos concept among the Peoples of the North'.


The Department of Anthropology is offering one 3-year PhD studentship, to start on 1st October 2013. The studentship will include full UK/EU fees, a maintenance stipend at RCUK rates, and the full ESRC fieldwork stipend. Additional funds may be available to fund conference travel and digitisation/computing costs. The studentship forms part of a 3-year ESRC funded project beginning 1 August 2013 entitled 'Etnos: A life history of the etnos concept among the Peoples of the North'.

The larger project aims to examine the status of ethnogenetic thinking in post-Soviet Russia. The 'etnos' concept, with its radical 'primordialism' has been associated strongly with Soviet statebuilding creating an unarticulated assumption that theory crumbled along with Soviet institutions. It has been one of the surprises of the post-Soviet transition that 'ethnos-style' thinking not only persists but is a vibrant part of the Russian anthropological context. This project aims to rewrite the concept in an active mood demonstrating its evocativeness both to contemporary Russian society and to the discipline as a whole. The project will therefore make use of the interpretative ethnographic techniques developed by historians of science to examine the life history and archaeology of the concept.

The studentship, entitled 'Emerging Indigineities in the Russian North' queries the claim of indigeneity which is often thought to be confined to settler states overseas. Recently, many scholars have been astounded by the growth of indigenous claims where they 'should not' exist. Rather than being trapped in time, limited to strictly enumerated groups, or being spatially encapsulated in 'salt-water' post-colonies overseas, vibrant claims to indigenous status can be found today among 'recent' African pastoralists, urban mestizo populations, and in heavily urbanized areas such as the Russian North. This studentship will investigate emergent indigineities in the urban Russian North, with special reference to how these new movements articulate new collective identities transcending traditional national narratives. The PhD candidate will work closely with community organizations that are lobbying for the recognition of their status, and will similarly ground the fieldwork in a reading of published historical and unpublished archival texts. The project will work parallel to the established team working on the history of etnos theory on a special example of etnos theorising - the indigenous case.

A full description of the studentship, and the larger project, can be downloaded at the link under 'Further Info' below or from the website of the Department of Anthropology under 'Postgraduate'.


All applicants must hold or be close to completing a postgraduate Masters degree in social and/or cultural anthropology, cultural history, or similar field. The studentships are available for full-time study only and are subject to certain strict residency criteria set by the ESRC. Candidates are advised to refere to the ESRC guidelines (below) and to contact the PI to learn more about the ESRC residence criteria.


Selection will be made on the basis of academic merit.

Application Procedure

Applicants should apply to the PhD programme in Anthropology, following the standard procedure and using the on-line or downloadable forms available at

On the form, candidates should indicate that the application is for Postgraduate Research leading to the award of PhD in Anthropology. The date of entry should be given as 10/2013, the mode of study as full-time, and the intended source of funding should be listed as 'ESRC project Etnos'.


17th of June 2013

Further Info



Prospective applicants are storngly advised to contact the project's Principal Investigator Prof. David Anderson at

ESRC residency eligibility guidelines can be found on page 50 of the document at

Application Docs

Complete the postgraduate application form at  Two confidential letters of reference are required and a sample of written work of up to 20 pages is optional.

Proof of proficiency in English is required of non-UK applicants.



Czech Republic
United Kingdom

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