On 18 April 2019 the ‘Methods of field religious studies: Tools for field analysis’ masterclass and roundtable were held at the Tomsk State University.
The events were organised by the University’s Philosophy Department, together with the Dialogue of Civilizations Research Institute.
The audience was made up of students, undergraduates, and graduates of humanities departments studying history and the current conditions of religious communities in Russia, as well as practitioners working in the fields of inter-faith and inter-ethnic relations.
The meeting began with a speech by Maxim Mikheev, a DOC research associate, who spoke about the Institute’s history and activities, and explained why the Institute pays so much attention to studying the role of religion in modern society and to issues related to inter-religious dialogue.
Associate Professor at the Tomsk State Teachers University Alexandra Filkina, then presented her study of the ethno-religious communities of Western Siberia, which she conducted in 2011-2012. The objects of this comparative study were the Church of the Last Testament, as well as Anastasievtsy and Anurovtsy communities. Filkina spoke about the methods used in the study and shared her views on the specifics of the researcher position in the process of non-participant observation. The most interesting aspect in the study of these religious groups, according to Filkina, is the dynamics of their development. One of the probable causes of the emergence of isolated religious communities in modern Russia, she said, was the protest of the Soviet intelligentsia against the socio-economic transformations that took place in Russia after the USSR’s collapse. Attention