Khangai Herds is an observational film about the coexistence of two herding families and the herd animals living amongst them in the Khangai mountains of Mongolia. The herds consist of horses, cattle (including yak), and a combination of sheep and goats. In a land of extreme conditions, both herder and herd animal depend upon one another as a means of survival. Within broad river valleys, beneath steep slopes with patches of forest, herd animals are free to roam, existing within their own complex social structures and hierarchies. Herders successfully integrate themselves within their herd’s social structure by taking the role of lead animal in the herd, socially engaging and communicating daily in a constant cross-species, cross-cultural, human-other animal dialogue. This is achieved through herders and herd animals growing up amongst one another from birth and throughout important stages in their lives.
The film screening will be followed by a short discussion.
This film is part of the monthly film series Asia and the Pacific Screens, sponsored by the Australian Centre on China in the World.
Directed by Natasha Fijn
2008, 60 minutes
In Mongolian and English, with English subtitles