The Anti-Social Contract: Injurious Talk and Dangerous Exchanges in Northern Mongolia – University of Copenhagen

Asian Dynamics Initiative > Selected publications > The Anti-Social Contract

05 August 2019

The Anti-Social Contract: Injurious Talk and Dangerous Exchanges in Northern Mongolia

Lars Højer, Berghahn, 2019

Set in a remote district of villagers and nomadic pastoralists in the northernmost part of Mongolia, Højer introduces a local world, where social relationships are cast in witchcraft-like idioms of mistrust and suspicion. While the apparent social breakdown that followed the collapse of state socialism in Mongolia often implied a chaotic lack of social cohesion, this ethnography reveals an everyday universe where uncertain relations are as much internally cultivated in indigenous Mongolian perceptions of social relatedness, as it is externally confronted in postsocialist surroundings of unemployment and diminished social security.

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