The event opened on September 11, organized by Center of Typology and Semiotics of Folklore (RSUH) jointly with Institute for Classical and Oriental Studies (HSE), Department of Estonian and Comparative Folklore of the University of Tartu, Institute of Mongolian Studies at the National University of Mongolia, with the support of the Ministry of Education, Culture, Science and Sport of Mongolia.
The proceedings were opened by Dr. Nelkyudov, Director of the Center, who talked on the subject of folklore and anthropology in Mongolian studies and said, “it used to be possible to find epic texts in Mongolia but by 2006 they had disappeared. Fairy tales are rarely heard, either. What has survived best is mythological prose: tales (usually demonologic) about lower spirits, as well as beliefs, superstitions, some songs. On the other hand, researchers use more advanced technology: in our first expedition it used to be a huge recorder and we had to use sparingly every centimeter of tape and now we can record without limits. It is great, but it results in such a deluge of information that you just can’t analyze via former methods”.
The presentations focused on the etymology of the Turk-Mongolian theonym Atai Ulaan Tengri, Buryat manifestations of myth through cults and taboos, the role of myth in the formation of Mongolian worldview and cultural community, and others.
The first day ended with readings in memoriam of Dr. Elena Novak, a folklore studies expert, and a screening of the ethnographic movie “Times of Dreams”.The conference will end on September, 13.