"The Shaman's Coat
A Native History of Siberia"
Monday, 14 March 2005
2/F Sports House, So Kong Po, Causeway Bay
Drinks Reception 6.30 pm; Lecture 7.30 pm We are delighted to welcome to Hong Kong Anna Reid to lecture on the native history of Siberia. Richly illustrated by slides, the lecture describes the past and present story of Siberia's Eskimos, Russia's equivalent to the Native Americans or Australian Aborigines. Conquered in the seventeenth century by furhunting Cossacks, enslaved and infected with European diseases under the tsars and sent to the Gulag under Stalin, they nonetheless still number over a million. To find out what has become of them since the collapse of the Soviet Union, Anna Reid spent five months journeying through Siberia, from fishing villages on the river Ob, to yurts on the border with Mongolia and reindeercamps on the island of Sakahlin. Drawing on meetings with whale hunters and reindeerherders, camp survivors and Party apparatchiks, Ms Reid's lecture travels through 500 years of history and a twelfth of the world's land surface, from Mongolia to the Bering Strait. The talk vividly portrays some of the world's leastknown and most extraordinary peoples, and reminds us that although Russia has lost its Central European empire, it still has an Asian one. Anna Reid directs the foreign affairs programme of the Westminsterbased thinktank Policy Exchange. Her first book, 'Borderland: a Journey through the History of Ukraine' was published in 1997, following a two year posting to Kiev with The Economist magazine, and her second, 'The Shaman's Coat: a Native History of Siberia', in 2002, after five months' travel in Siberia. She studied law at Oxford, and has a master's degree in Russian History and Reform Economics from London University. Members and their guests are most welcome to attend this lecture, which is HK$100 for Members and HK$150 for others. This includes a complimentary drink at the reception before the lecture.