Film screening: Two Seasons: Multispecies Medicine in Mongolia

Bor leaning on fence

Event details


Date & time

Friday 20 April 2018


Centre for China in the World Auditorium


Dr Natasha Fijn


Kirsten Farrell

Additional links

Herding families in the Khangai Mountains of Mongolia live in extreme climatic conditions and are crucially reliant on their herd animals for survival. This multispecies-based filmic analysis engages with more-than-human sociality and perceptions towards other beings. The concept of one’s homeland (nutag) and a strong sense of place are crucially important to herders. The documentary focuses on three different locations, or homelands in Mongolia, filmed in spring and then again in autumn (hence the title ‘Two Seasons’). In spring the focus is on the birth of newborn animals and increasing immunity, sometimes through bloodletting to prevent illness, while in autumn the focus is on preparing hay for winter and collecting medicinal herbs. Layering the two seasons with the three locations means the 95-minute film is structurally divided into six separate parts: Ganbaa visiting his homeland in spring; Nara’s homeland in spring; Bor and Bömbög’s homeland in spring, then returning again to all three communities in autumn. The film conveys how medicinal knowledge is passed on through practical forms of mentorship within these extended families.

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