Konstantinos Zorbas: The Professionalization of Revivalist Shamans as Ministers of Justice in Tyva Republic, Siberia


This paper documents a strand of religious practices concerned with curse afflictions in Tyva Republic, south Siberia. Drawing on consultations dealing with misfortunes the paper probes a field of justice, which is governed by shamans. The analysis focuses on two cases which illuminate the shamans’ function as a judiciary against kinds of transgression which are sanctioned by the Russian justice system. The data reveal the rise of curse afflictions as a cause of misfortunes in Tyva. The paper concludes that, in remedying misfortunes attributed to cursing, shamans re-enact memories of their ancestors’ resistance against the Soviet regime.