khristophorovaDSc in Philology

Director of the Educational and Research Center for Typological and Semiotic Folklore Studies, Russian State University for the Humanities,

Deputy Head of the Master’s Programs, Center for Typological and Semiotic Folklore Studies,

Professor of Anthropology, Russian State University for the Humanities,

Leading Researcher, The Centre for Theoretical Folklore Studies, School for Advanced Studies in the Humanities, (STEPS) RANEPA

Education: graduated from the History Department, Lomonosov Moscow State University (1992),

postgraduate (1993–1996) and habilitation at the Graduate Institute of Humanitarian Studies, RSUH (2002–2005)

PhD thesis:

Modeling of Behavior in Archaic Cultures (on the Material of Folklore Genres of the Peoples of Siberia) (1997)

DSc (Habil.) thesis:

Discourse of Witchcraft and Local Folklore Traditions: Semantics, Pragmatics, and Social Functions (2010)

Research interests: folklore studies; social, cultural, and visual anthropology; history and ethnography of the peoples of Siberia, Far North and Far Eas; ethnomedicine; the development and functioning of non-fairy-tale prose.


Professional service

Deputy Editor-in-Chief of the journal Folklore: Structure, Typology, Semiotics

Member of the Editorial Board of the journal City of Anthropology and Folklore

Member of the Editorial Board of the journal Studia Litterarum 


Awards and Distinctions

Prize Winner. P.G. Bogatyryov Prize for the monograph Sorcerers and Victims: Anthropology of Witchcraft in Modern Russia (2011)

Diploma Winner of the 7th All-Russian Competition University Book-2015. Monograph Hiccups: Mythological Character in the Local Tradition (2015)


Academic publications — over 150 publications, including 4 monographs.

Selected publications


  • Obsession in a Russian village. Moscow, Neolit Publ., 2016. In Russ.
  • Hiccup: Mythological Personage in Local Tradition. Moscow, RSUH Publ., 2013. In Russ.
  • Sorcerers and Victims: Anthropology of Witchcraft in Modern Russia. Moscow, RSUH Publ., O. G. I. Publ., 2010. In Russ.
  • Logic of Interpretation: Folklore and Modeling of Behavior in Archaic Cultures. Moscow, RSUH Publ., 1998. In Russ.


Edited collections

  • “Shards” in Tradition: Collective Monograph, comp. E.E. Levkievskaia, N.V. Petrov, O.B. Khristoforova. Moscow, Neolit Publ., 2020. In Russ.
  • Novik, E.S. Myth and Ritual of Peoples of Siberia: Selected Articles, comp. S.S. Makarov, ex. ed. O.B. Khristoforova, introd. by S.Iu. Nekliudov, O.B. Khristoforova. Moscow, RGGU Publ., 2019. In Russ.
  • Genius loci: Articles in Honor of the 75th Anniversary of S.Yu. Neklyudov, ex. ed. O.B. Khristoforova, comp. M.V. Akhmetova, N.I. Petrov. Moscow, Forum Publ., 2016. In Russ.
  • In Umbra: Demonology as a Semiotic System, Almanac, issue 1–9, ex. ed. and comp. D.I. Antonov, O.B. Khristoforova. Moscow, RSUH Publ. (issue 1, 7–9), Indrik Publ. (issue 2–6), 2012–2020. In Russ.
  • The Space of the Witchcraft, comp. and introd. O.B. Khristoforova, ed. by S.Y. Nekludov. Moscow, RSUH Publ., 2010. In Russ.
  • Cooked Shaman, Dishonest Slave and Others: 75 Tasks in Folklore, Anthropology, and Sociolinguistics: Studies. Allowance, ed. by A.S. Arkhipova, S.A. Burlak, I.B. Itkin, S.Y. Neklyudov, O.B. Khristoforova. Moscow, RSUH Publ., 2010. In Russ.
  • Myth, Symbol, Ritual. Peoples of Siberia, ed. by O.B. Khristoforova, S.Y. Nekludov. Moscow, RSUH Publ., 2008. In Russ.
  • Dreams and Visions in Popular Culture. Mythological, Religious-Mystical, and Cultural-Psychological Aspects, comp. O.B. Khristoforova, ed. S.Y. Nekludov. Moscow, RSUH Publ., 2002. In Russ.
  • Language, Culture and Society. Collection of Scientific Articles and Educational and Methodological Materials, ed. by A.V. Dybo, O.B. Khristoforova. Moscow, RSUH Publ., 2001. In Russ.

 Scopus, Web of Science

  • “From Anxiety to Pride, From Anger to Joy: Emotions in Cuban Santería.” Traditional Culture, vol. 24, no. 3, 2023,  pp. 60–76. In Russ.
  • “The Shaman's Laughter and the Ethnographer's Cry.” Novyi mir, no. 7, 2022. pp. 217–224. In Russ. 

Selected Essays

  • “Orisha in Cuban Santeria: From the Ritual Site to the Museum and Back Again.” Gosudarstvo, religiia, tserkov’ v Rossii i za rubezhom, no. 40(3), pp. 168–211. In Russ. 
  • “The Tale of the Possessed Solomon: Mythological Contexts and Parallels.” Fol'klor: struktura, tipologiia, semiotika, vol. III, no. 1, 2020, pp. 94–127. In Russ.
  • “Oppression — Sleep Paralysis? Unusual between Folkloristic and Medical Classifications.” ShAGI / Steps, vol. 6, no. 4, 2020, pp. 101–125. DOI: 10.22394/2412-9410-2020-6-4-101-125. In Russ.
  • “‘These are all our Ancestors’: Construction from ‘Fragments’ in Cuban Santeria”. “Shards” in Tradition: Collective Monograph, comp. E.E. Levkievskaia, N.V. Petrov, O.B. Khristoforova. Moscow, Neolit Publ., 2020, pp. 246–284. In Russ. 
  • “Master’s Program in Folklore in RSUH: Seven Years of Experience.” IV All-Russian Congress of Folklorists: Tula, March 1–5, 2018: Collection of Articles: in 3 vols., vol. 3: Comprehensive Studies of Traditional Culture, comp. V.E. Dobrovol'skaia, A.B. Ippolitova, ex. ed. A.B. Ippolitova. Moscow, GRDNT im. V.D. Polenova Publ., 2020, pp. 385–391. DOI: 10.24411/9999–022A‐2020–10342. (Co-authored with S.Iu. Nekliudov). In Russ.
  • “Earth, Ice and Eyes: Notes on the Nganasan Mythology.” Power of the Gaze: Eyes in Mythology and Iconography, comp. and ex. ed. D.I. Antonov, 2nd ed., rev. and edd. Moscow, RGGU Publ., 2019, pp. 147–173. In Russ. 
  • “Why Did Shamans Disappear among the Nganasans? Hermeneutic Possibilities of the Mythical-Ritual Systems of Peoples of Siberia and Challenges of Time.” Vestnik RGGU. Seriia “Literaturovedenie. Iazykoznanie. Kul'turologiia”, no. 4, 2019, pp. 40–54. In Russ. 
  • “‛All of Them Are Our Ancestors’: African and European Elements in Cuban Religion.” The Omnipresent Past. Historical Anthropology of Africa and African Diaspora, ed. by D.M. Bondarenko, M.L. Butovskaya. Moscow, LRC Publ., 2019, pp. 339–368. In English
  • “‛You Will Remember Me’: Witchcraft and Power in a Russia’s Local Society.” Charms and Charming. Studies on Magic in Everyday Life, ed. É. Pócs. Ljubljana, 2019, pp. 23–29. (Studia Mythologica Slavica, vol. 15). In English
  • “Pourquoi les chamanes nganassanes ont-ils disparu? Le potentiel herméneutique du système de mythes et de rituels des peuples sibériens face aux défis du temps”. Transferts culturels en Sibérie. De l’Altaï à la Iakoutie, collection dirigée par Jean-Christophe Tamisier. Paris, Édition Demopolis, 2018, pp. 221–233. In French
  • “How to Identify the Demon. Part 2: Practices of Exorcism in the Modern Orthodox Parish.” In Umbra: Demonology as a Semiotic System: Almanac, issue 6. Moscow, RSUH Publ., 2017, pp. 239–273. In Russ.
  • “Where did ‛Bad Devil’ Come from? Possible Sources of ‛The Tale of Uncovered Vessels’.Trudy otdela drevnerusskoi literatury, vol. 65, 2017, pp. 122–141. In Russ.
  • “Oral Tradition of the Old Believers of Moldova and Transnistria.” Modern Old Believers of Moldova Books, Traditions, Economy: Collection of Scientific Articles and Documents, comp. by N.V. Litvina. Мoscow, Arkheodoksiia Publ., 2016, pp. 220–254. In Russ.
  • “A Story about how Dyoma and Maxim Didn’t Share a Girlfriend: the Section 1899–1888 in the Oral History of the Old Believers of the Verknekamye Area.” Genius Loci: a Collection of Articles in Honor of the 75th Anniversary of S.Yu. Neklyudov. Moscow, RSUH Publ., 2016, pp. 382–403. In Russ.
  • “To Identify the Demon. Part 1: Vernacular Theory of Disease and Methods of Symbolic Treatment.” In Umbra: Demonology as a Semiotic SystemAlmanac, issue 5. Мoscow, RSUH Publ., 2016, pp. 259–275. In Russ.



1998 – present — Senior Lecturer, Associate Professor, Professor at the Educational and Scientific Center for Social Anthropology of the RSUH; Associate Professor, Professor of the Educational and Scientific Center of the typology and semiotics of folklore of the RSUH.

Courses: Social (Cultural) Anthropology, Mythological and Ritual Systems, Sociology and Anthropology of the Spiritual Life, Myth, Symbol, Ritual, Semiotic Methods in the Humanities, Visual Anthropology, Medical Anthropology.

2013 – present — Professor of the School of Contemporary Humanitarian Studies (SCHS), ION RANEPA.

Courses: Ethnology and Social Anthropology, Introduction to General Anthropology, Social Anthropology and Ethnographic Research Methods.

2001–2002 — Guest Lecturer, Lomonosov Moscow State University, Department of Foreign Languages.

2000 – present — Guest Lecturer, Gymnasium no. 1514, Moscow. Course Visual Anthropology.