Anthropology, University of Chicago
My research is concerned with the intersection between the production of expert knowledge about health in Russia, and the circulation of state-driven political imaginaries of “life.” My dissertation examines the processes of formalization surrounding traditional medicine, and tracks the emergence of what I suggest is a “biocosmopolitan” sensibility – a set of rhetorics and practices to combine and blend disparate therapeutic ways of managing bodies and subjects under a single logic of “revitalizing” the nation’s health by recuperating the medical practices of Russia’s geographically and temporally peripheral “others.” In Buryatia, a border region in southeastern Siberia, this rhetoric of integration is both articulated through, and often clashes with a local Buddhist form of care, simply referred to as “Tibetan medicine.” This project takes the efforts to formalize and medically incorporate the practices of Tibetan medicine in Buryatia as a productive site to reflect on imaginaries of the post-soviet body, and how they interact with claims to ethnic, religious, and regional encompassments.
Tatiana Chudakova was born in Moscow, Russia, lived in France, and subsequently in the US. She received her BA in Anthropology and Psychology from the University of Virginia, and is currently in the final stages of pursuing a PhD in anthropology at the University of Chicago.
Photo from the field - Tatiana Chudakova