In the 19th and the first half of the 20th century, an opposition between official medicine and folk medicine, partly based on ethnic aspects, formed in Lithuania. The article analyses the alternation in the ‘self-other’ opposition in the choice of treatment. Folk medicine traditions existed alongside standard medicine in the town of Aukštadvaris, which was characterised as multi-confessional in the first half of the 20th century (despite the tensions, Lithuanians, Poles, Jews and Tartars lived together harmoniously). Faith healers with extraordinary qualities or powers were classified as ‘other’. So the choice of treatment reveals two aspects: the concept of ethnicity, and mythical perception (when dealing with those engaged in other activities). Studies have shown that in a disaster or illness, the ‘self-other’ opposition declines. An opposition between official medicine and folk medicine did not form in the Aukštadvaris area.
The article provides an overview of the emergence of the term ethnic culture, analysing how the notion of ethnic culture is understood in the ethnology of Western countries, and how it is interpreted by the creators of ethnos theory. In Lithuania, not only cultural workers but also scholars and researchers understand ethnic culture very differently. In order to dispense with the chaotic and extremely varied understanding of ethnic culture in Lithuania, the author offers several possible ways out: 1) if most ethnologists and cultural workers in Lithuania have accepted the fundamental postulate of ethnos theory, recognising that ethnic culture can be discerned from the entirety of the culture of the nation, then the notion of ethnic culture existing in the theory of ethnos should also be adopted; 2) if this understanding is rejected, then guidance should be taken from the theoretical approach existing in the ethnology of Western countries requiring us not to apply the notion of ethnic culture when discussing cultures of nations.
This article examines the attitudeof young people of age 18 to 30 from Lithuania, Latvia, Finland and Norway towards the national costume. The aim of this article is to analyze and determine how national costume is appreciated by the youth of countries mentioned before. The article briefly presents the preconditions for the emergence and creation of a nationalcostume; it analyzes what kind of information is lacking about national costume. The research was made in 2017-2018. Information was provided by 156 respondents. In conclusion, the worst situation is is between Finnish youth and the deepest traditions of costume‘s wearing has Norway. The results of Lithuanians reveal that national costume is not very important tradition, Latvians show the growing interest in the costume.
In this article we shall put forward a typology of the various expressions of political regionalism in Europe grounded in the assumption of the existence of two basic yet, surprisingly enough, not fully divergent forms; i.e. ethnic regionalism and transnational regionalism. In the first case, we paradoxically encounter a scaled down replica of the national State (Catalonia, Basque Country, “Padania” etc.) while in the second case, apparently with a post-ethnic connotation, just as paradoxically we are dealing with transnational yet not entirely non-ethnic projects (Black Sea Region, Tatarstan etc.).
The human beings use to ascribe themselves and others to certain groups and dividing world for ‘them’ and ‘us’. We should rethink the role played by ethnicity concept in social sciences, common sense knowledge and practice in contemporary world. But the turn from ethnic or national identities to other ones is just the first step in my opinion. The second step in the same direction is to try to answer the question: does it really make sense for sociologists and anthropologists to investigate identities or we rather have to investigate people’s action and their behaviour? Moreover, if only we agree on these points we have to re-think the role that scholars play in the process of interpretation of the world by modern people, because the interpretations that we produce as ‘experts’ do not exist only in an ‘academic world’. They are in use by ordinary people as well as by politicians, and that is why those interpretations have visible practical consequences. Hereby I would like to discuss possible alternatives to ethnically based understandings of the issues of the ‘ethnicity’, ‘identity’ and ‘multiculturalism’. I’ll start with the description of the research experience that made me concerned about the issues pointed out.
Scant attention has been paid in the social sciences to the problem of defining units of analysis. The problem of using culture as a unit of analysis is that culture is not a unit of analysis like a jury is a unit of analysis. It is also a more ambiguous unit of analysis than religion, ethnicity or gender, units which are possible to identify and define. It is concluded that the individual is the least problematic unit for analysis. The limitations of using the individual as the unit of analysis are that group characteristics and behaviors can only be measured indirectly and studies are prone to the ‘individual differences fallacy.’ It is dubious that one can generalize from individuals beyond the community. There are no ultimate primitive units of culture and whatever unit for analysis the researcher selects depends on the questions asked. Always however, a unit of analysis must be clearly defined, it cannot be used as a variable rather variables are extracted from the unit of analysis. Most importantly, there should always be a theory of analysis that justifies the choice of the units for analysis.