Ethnic identification and transnational practices of Russian Koreans in St.Petersburg
Keywords:Russian Koreans, ethnic identification, transnational practices, migrants’ descendants
AbstractThe paper explores the interrelations between the ethnic identification and the organizational activities of national-cultural associations of the ‘Russian Koreans’ in St. Petersburg. The study is based on 21 qualitative focused interviews with the participants of two Korean national-cultural associations in St. Petersburg. The article provides historical overview of Korean migrations to Russia and the USSR with special attention to regional differences. Theoretical and methodological foundations concerning symbolic nature of the ethnic borders are characterized. Three patterns of ethnic identification are singled out: «embedded hybrid identification», «ethnic indifference» and «intensification of transnational contacts». The first pattern deals with organization of events and networking within the local community. The second one is related to the denial of the importance of being Korean. The third one highlights not only traditions but also the language and implies development of transnational practices. The author concludes that there is a corrse- pondense between the specific features of national-cultural associations and the pattern of ethnic identification.
STATE AND SOCIETY