Laura Siragusa

PhD

PhD in Anthropology
Linguistic Anthropology, Human-environment relations, Indigenous Studies

Biography

In my research, I put into dialogue Linguistic and Environmental Anthropology. I embrace a phenomenological approach to communicative practices in relation to the broader ecology. My work places communication in a web of relations that are responsive to socio-political, economic, and ecological dynamics. I have worked on issues related to Indigenous and minority language revival and language sustainability, language responsibility in relation to place, language materiality and shared breath among others.

My theoretical and methodological specialization focuses on social and cultural processes and my experience in Linguistic Anthropology—wedded with an interest in environmental and historical questions and Indigenous Studies—allows me to develop and expand my scope. In my recent work, I have thus made enquiries of domestication, (language) sustainability, (food) waste and sustainability, and food practices. 

The geographical location of my research is in the Arctic and Russia, where I have worked with Veps and Saami.

Research interests

  • Linguistic anthropology
  • human-environment relations
  • Indigenous ontologies and epistemologies
  • Circumpolar region

PUBLICATIONS (2015-2021)

BOOKS

Siragusa, Laura. 2017. Promoting Heritage Language in Northwest Russia. London and New York: Routledge.

EDITED VOLUMES AND SPECIAL ISSUES

Siragusa, Laura, and Jenanne K. Ferguson, eds. 2020. Responsibility and Language Practices in Place. Helsinki: Fennica Series Anthropologica. https://doi.org/10.21435/sfa.5

Virtanen, Pirjo K., Laura Siragusa, and Hanna Guttorm, guest eds. 2020. Indigenous Conceptualizations of Sustainability. COSUST: Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability 43. https://www.sciencedirect.com/journal/current-opinion-in-environmental-sustainability/vol/43/suppl/C

Ferguson, Jenanne K., and Laura Siragusa, guest eds. 2017. Language Sustainability in the Circumpolar North / Viabilité de la langue et le Nord circumpolaire. Anthropologica 59 (1) https://doi.org/10.3138/anth.591.T01

ARTICLES IN PEER-REVIEWED JOURNALS

Siragusa, Laura. 2020. “Making Kin with Sourdough during a Pandemic.” Food & Foodways 29(1). https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/07409710.2021.1860336   

Siragusa, Laura, Clint Westman, and Sarah Moritz. 2020. “Shared Breath. Human and Non-Human Co-Presence through Ritualized Words and Beyond.” Current Anthropology 61(4): 471–494. https:// doi.org/10.1086/710139

Virtanen, Pirjo K., Laura Siragusa, and Hanna Guttorm. 2020. “Editorial: Indigenous Conceptualizations of Sustainability.” COSUST: Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability.

Virtanen, Pirjo K., Laura Siragusa, and Hanna Guttorm. 2020. “Introduction: toward more inclusive definitions of sustainability.” COSUST: Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability 43: 77–82. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cosust.2020.04.003

Siragusa, Laura, and Dmitry Arzyutov. 2020. “Nothing Goes to Waste: Sustainable Practices of Re-Use among Indigenous Groups in the Russian North.” COSUST: Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability 43: 41–48. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cosust.2020.02.001.

Siragusa, Laura. 2018. “Вепсские секреты: двуязычие, переключение кодов и практики сокрытия [Vepsian Secrets: Bilingualism, Code-Switching and Concealment Practices].” Translated by Dmitry V. Arzyutov. Этнография / Etnografia, no. 1: 185–94. https://doi.org/10.31250/2618-8600-2018-1-185-194

Siragusa, Laura, Therese Åsa Margaretha Lindström Tiedemann, Shana Sara Zaia, Alyce Marie Whipp, Céline Aludaat-Dujardin, Tuomas Mikael Heikkilä, and Eija Sofia Jokitalo. 2018. “Perspectives from an English-Speaking Teachers Peer-Mentoring Group at the University of Helsinki.” Yliopistopedagogiikka 25 (1): 62–64.

Siragusa, Laura. 2017. “Secrecy and Sustainability: How Concealment and Revelation Shape Vepsian Language Revival.” Anthropologica 59 (1): 74–88. https://doi.org/10.3138/anth.591.T07

Siragusa, Laura, and Madis Arukask. 2017. “Reflecting the ‘Field’: Two Vepsian Villages and Three Researchers.” Sibirica 16 (1): 75–105. https://doi.org/10.3167/sib.2017.160104

Ferguson, Jenanne K., and Laura Siragusa. 2017. “Introduction: Language Sustainability in the Circumpolar North.” Anthropologica 59 (1): 1–5. https://doi.org/10.3138/anth.591.T01

Ferguson, Jenanne, and Laura Siragusa. 2017. “Introduction : Viabilité de la langue et le Nord circumpolaire.” Anthropologica 59 (1): 6–11. https://doi.org/10.3138/anth.591.T02

Siragusa, Laura. 2015. “Metaphors of Language: The Vepsian Ecology Challenges an International Paradigm.” Eesti Ja Soome-Ugri Keeleteaduse Ajakiri. Journal of Estonian and Finno-Ugric Linguistics 6 (1): 111–37.

Siragusa, Laura. 2015. “Monolingual and Bi-Lingual Practices in Pondala: Managing Relations and Power.” Folklore, no. 61: 65–88. https://doi.org/10.7592/FEJF2015.61.siragusa

BOOK CHAPTERS

Siragusa, Laura, and Dmitry V. Arzyutov. 2020. Больше, чем мусор: устойчивые практики вторичного иcпользования материалов среди коренных народов на Российском Севере [Bol’she, chem musor: ustoĭchivye praktiki vtorichnogo ispol’zovanii͡a materialov sredi korennykh narodov na Rossiĭskom Severe]. In Arkheologii͡a Arktiki, edited by Natalia V. Fedorova. Vol. 7. Salekhard.

Siragusa, Laura. 2020. “Tomorrow Is Not (Only) in Humans’ Hands: Responsibility for the Future as ‘Shared Business’ in Vepsian Ways of Speaking.” In Responsibility and Language Practices in Place, edited by Laura Siragusa and Jenanne K. Ferguson. Helsinki: Fennica Series Anthropologica.

Siragusa, Laura, and Jenanne K. Ferguson. 2020. “Introduction: Language and Responsibility: A Relational Approach.” In Responsibility and Language Practices in Place, edited by Laura Siragusa and Jenanne K. Ferguson. Helsinki: Fennica Series Anthropologica.

Siragusa, Laura. 2020. “Ways of Speaking, Responsibility, and the Animals ‘of the Forest’ in North-Western Russia.” In Managing the Return of the Wild: Human Encounters with Wolves in Europe, edited by Michaela Fenske and Bernard Tschofen. London and New York: Routledge.

Siragusa, Laura. 2015. “Towards a Broader Inclusion of Heritage Language and Traditional Knowledge in the Vepsian Revival Movement: Cultural, Ideological and Economic Issues.” In Ageing, Wellbeing and Climate Change in the Arctic: An Interdisciplinary Analysis, edited by Päivi Naskali, Marjaana Seppänen, and Shahnaj Begum, 213–30. London and New York: Routledge.

Siragusa, Laura. 2010. “Securing a Minority Language: The Veps of North-Western Russia.” In Humanizing Security in the Arctic, edited by Michelle Daveluy, Francis Lévesque, and Jenanne K. Ferguson, 257–275. Edmonton, Alberta: CCI Press.

BOOK REVIEWS

Siragusa, Laura. 2014. ”Book Review of The Worlds of Russian Village Women by Olson and Adonyeva.” Slavonica 20(1): 78–79.

Siragusa, Laura. 2014. ”Book Review of The Way of Kinship by Vaschenko & Smith.” Anthropology of East Europe Review 32(1): 71–72.

Siragusa, Laura. 2013. ”Book Review of Frontiers Encounters by Billé, Delaplace and Humphrey.” Sibirica 12(3): 90–92.

Siragusa, Laura. 2013. “Book Review of Bridging Divides by Overland and Berg-Nordlie.” Sibirica 12(1): 93–95.

OTHER PUBLICATIONS

Siragusa, Laura. 2014. “Экология, власть и влияние (agency) вепсской письменности и устной формы языка [Ecology, Power and Agency in Vepsian Literacy and Orality].” In Материалы V Всероссийской научной конференции финно-угроведов 25-28 июня 2014 г. [Material from the Fifth International Finno-Ugric Conference, 25-28 June 2014], 292–95. Петрозаводск.

Siragusa, Laura. 2012. “Представления вепсов о жизнеспособности их языка [Understanding of Veps of the Life Fo Their Heritage Language].” In Этнокультурное развитие национальных меньшинств на Северо-Западе России, в Северных странах и странах Балтии: Материалы международного семинара. Петрозаводск, 19-20 октября 2011 Года [Ethno-Сultural Development of National Minorities in the North-West of Russia, Northern and Baltic Countries]., 115–22. Петрозаводск: Карельский научный центр РАН.

Siragusa, Laura. 2011. “Introduction to Section Three: The Method of Voice.” In Voices: Postgraduate Perspectives on Inter-Disciplinarity, edited by Kathryn Vincent and Juan F. Botero-Garcia, 94–97. Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars Publishing.

Siragusa, Laura. 2011. “‘Свое’ - ‘Чужое’ - Что это значит? [“One’s Own!» - ‘Stranger’ – What Does It Involve?].” In Вепсы и их культурное наследие: связь времен (Памяти Р.П. Лонина) [Veps and Their Cultural Heritage: Links of Time (in Memory of Ryurik P. Lonin]. Петрозаводск: Карельский научный центр РАН.

Siragusa, Laura. 2011. “‘Mina Mel’duin Vepsän Maha / Я влюбилась в вепсскую землю’ [I Fell in Love with the Vepsian Land].” In Verez Tullei, translated by Olga Yu. Zhukova. Петрозаводск: Периодика.

TRANSLATIONS: VISUAL ANTHROPOLOGY FILMS (VEPSIAN AND RUSSIAN INTO ENGLISH)

Smolina, Larisa, and Vladimir Slavov. 2016. Paimnen torvut [The Magic Horn]. Documentary.

Smolina, Larisa, and Vladimir Slavov. 2015. Sel’ktas vedes kala kokib [Fish bite in Clean Water]. Documentary.

TRANSLATIONS ABSTRACTS (RUSSIAN INTO ENGLISH)

Strogal’shchikova, Zinaida I., and Mikhail V. Diachkov, eds. 2016. Материалы V всемирного конгресса финно-угорских народов: сборник докладов и документов [Materials of the Fifth International Finno-Ugric Congress: Collection of Papers and Documents]. Translated by Laura Siragusa and Polina Strogal’shchikova. 2nd ed. Сыктывкар: Коми республиканская типография.

Strogal’shchikova, Zinaida I. 2012. Этнокультурное развитие национальных меньшинств на Северо-Западе России, в Северных странах и странах Балтии: Материалы международного семинара. Петрозаводск, 19-20 октября 2011 г. [Ethno-Cultural Development of National Minorities in the North-West of Russia, Northern and Baltic Countries. Materials from the International Seminar Held in Petrozavodsk on 19-20 October 2011]. Translated by Laura Siragusa. Петрозаводск: Карельский научный центр РАН.

INTERVIEWS

19 August 2019, Interview to Dr Jenanne Ferguson on her book, Words like Birds for CaMP Anthropology: https://campanthropology.org/2019/08/19/jenanne-ferguson-words-like-birds/

March 2021, Interview to Senior Curator Marko Mutanen on the new PROFI6 Biodiverse Anthropocenes: https://vimeo.com/521865402/8d6496b4e0 

April 2021, Interview to Prof of Archaeology Vesa-Pekka Herva on his work and links to Biodiverse Anthropocenes. https://vimeo.com/535863325/91fca6c7f7

 

 

PERSONAL GRANTS (2015-2021)

UArctic Thematic Network (Applicant: L. Siragusa)

Fund for funding proposal session (Spring 2021)

(€ 1,500)

KONE Foundation (PI: Dr. L. Siragusa, Co-PI: Dr, Olga Zhukova)

Project title: A tangible heritage: Vepsian language and non-human agencies to co-construct a northern environment, grant number 201805889 (September 2019 – August 2021)

(€175,000)

Faculty of Arts, Future Development Fund, University of Helsinki, Finland (PI: Dr. L. Siragusa)

Funding for cooperative project on Language and the Environment, Human-Animal Relations (January – December 2018)

(ca. € 29,920)

Faculty of Arts Mobility Allowance, University of Helsinki, Finland

Funding for mobility allowance to visit the University of Nevada, Reno, USA (1-31 September 2018)

(€2,800)

Joined the ERC funded project Arctic Domus, grant number 295458, 2011 (PI: Prof. D. G. Anderson), University of Aberdeen, Scotland

Funding for Post-Doc position (January 2015 – August 2017)

(£32,644 p/a)

Principal’s Excellence Grant, University of Aberdeen, Scotland

Funding for participation in conference (April 2015)

(ca. £500)

ERMOS (Estonian Research Mobility Scheme) grant financed with the support of FP7 Marie Curie COFUND the “People” Programme, University of Tartu, Estonia

Funding for Post-Doc position (January 2013 – January 2015)

(€69,220)

Thesis supervisions

PhD and MA supervision
  • PhD

    Supervisor, 2020-, J. Bigá (HU)

    Advisor, 2017-, U. Obrusnik (UAberdeen)

    Thesis Committee, 2019-/2020-, M. Fedina and S. Gregersen (HU)

    MA

    Supervisor, 2020-, A. Haapanen and E. Hietavirta (HU)

     

    PAST (MA)

    Supervisor, 2020, S. Gregersen and A. Sinicato (HU)

    Advisor, 2017, C. Friscia (UAberdeen)

    Advisor, 2016, M. Piipuu (UTartu)