How Relations Make Persons: Rituals Accompanying Childbirth and Socialization of Infants in Kyrgyzstan

In: Central Asian Affairs
Swetlana Torno Heidelberg University,

Search for other papers by Swetlana Torno in
Current site
Google Scholar
View More View Less
Download Citation Get Permissions

Access options

Get access to the full article by using one of the access options below.

Institutional Login

Log in with Open Athens, Shibboleth, or your institutional credentials

Login via Institution


Buy instant access (PDF download and unlimited online access):


Most ethnographies of childbirth are situated in the field of medical anthropology and focus on the interplay of different medical traditions and power relations. A smaller number of works examine activities and rituals accompanying childbirth in the context of integrating new members into the community and constituting the “person” by means of creating or changing relations to the “socio-cosmological universe.” Following the latter, the paper analyzes rituals and practices surrounding childbirth and the socialization of children during their first year of life in Kyrgyzstan. I argue that personhood is established through careful work on relationships to entities situated in the social and cosmic domains of the society. The paper draws on ethnographic research in north Kyrgyzstan and explores ideas about conception, rules of conduct during pregnancy, and the life cycle rituals zhentek toĭ, beshik toĭ, and tushoo toĭ.

Content Metrics

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 372 43 2
Full Text Views 213 2 1
PDF Views & Downloads 45 9 2