Scientific articles

Beasts, demons, and cold bitches Memories of communist women in contemporary Poland

Agnieszka Mrozik analyzes the portrayals of women communists in the Stalinist period in Poland, produced in the framework of nationalist history during the illiberal turn. She argues that biographies of women dignitaries served the broader political function of delivering a cautionary tale against “excessive” liberation of women, so that female communists were often presented as beasts and demons rather than political agents.

By Agnieszka Mrozik Inga kommentarer till Beasts, demons, and cold bitches

Between gender blindness and nationalist herstory The history of Polish women in WWII as the site of an anti-modernist revolution

This paper discusses the current “herstorical turn” in professional and popular historiography and memory of WWII in Poland: a growing interest in women and the distinctiveness of their wartime experiences. Focusing on one dominant strand of this “herstorical turn” – nationalist herstory – the article reflects on the ways in which women’s history has become one of the platforms a broader illiberal political shift that is currently ongoing in Central Europe.

By Weronika Grzebalska Inga kommentarer till Between gender blindness and nationalist herstory

Roots of illiberal memory politics. Remembering women in the 1956 Hungarian Revolution

In 2016, commemorations of the 60th anniversary of the 1956 Hungarian Revolution brought new conflicts in memory politics. This article analyzes the reasons for women’s absence from the historiography of the 1956 Revolution and discusses how the polypore state is using the populist turn to introduce hegemonic narratives and to include women in the narrative of “national feminism”.

By Andrea Petö Inga kommentarer till Roots of illiberal memory politics.

In the Russian Imperial Consciousness. Early Photography and Railroad The Poetics of the Chinese Eastern Railroad

This paper is devoted to the semantics of the visual images of the Chinese-Eastern Railroad (KVGD)1 and the “Oriental Other” in the Russian public consciousness of the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Here it is that the construction of the KVGD was intended to be a symbol of the technological progress and spiritual strength of the Russian Empire in the Russian mass consciousness.

By Viktoriya Sukovata Inga kommentarer till In the Russian Imperial Consciousness.

War and other worries of the people views on Ukraine from Ukraine

The article describes Ukrainian views on the war in the eastern region of the country and other worries of the people as well as Ukrainian-Russian relations and the views on the EU. The empirical material is from opinion polls carried out by the Kyiv International Institute for Sociology in 2014–2017. The conflict in the east is the main concern of the population.

By Simo Mannila and Natalia Kharchenko Inga kommentarer till War and other worries of the people views on Ukraine from Ukraine

The inverted myth Viktor Pelevin’s Buddha’s little finger

In his contribution to the volume Russian Literature since 1991 entitled “The Postmodernist Novel”, Mark Lipovetsky makes the now rather widespread claim that the Russian postmodernist post-Soviet novel represents a break with the totalizing tendencies of the socialist realist novel and opens for new ways of experiencing and conceptualizing the world. In this paper this claim is critically examined on the basis of a reading of Viktor Pelevin's Chapaev i Pustota (transl. as Buddha’s Little Finger or Clay Machine Gun against the backdrop of contemporary debates about realism and simulacra. Here it is argued that the Soviet myth of Chapaev lends itself to the totality of the private myth.

By Tora Lane Inga kommentarer till The inverted myth

Mickey Mouse – the perfect tenant of an early Soviet city

The article provides a closer reading of Walter Benjamin’s essays Experience and Poverty and Moscow, by juxtaposing the records of his visit to Russia in 1926–1927 with the author’s reflections on the nature of the transformations in the urban space of an early Soviet city. By using the dystopian image of Mickey Mouse as the desired inhabitant of modernity introduced by Benjamin in Experience and Poverty, Seits gives the allegorical and comparative interpretation to the substantial changes in the living space of Moscow that were witnessed by Walter Benjamin.

By Irina Seits Inga kommentarer till Mickey Mouse – the perfect tenant of an early Soviet city

Revolutionary Synchrony: A Day of the World

A Day of the World (Den’ mira) was a documentary volume, published in 1937, that was intended to provide a snapshot of the entire globe on a single day, September 27, 1935. The tensions within and around A Day of the World capture some of the basic contradictions in socialist realism, the official aesthetic method of Soviet art: between publicity and intimacy and between the dream of synchronous, global revolution and the aberrant temporalities of individual experience.

By Robert Bird Inga kommentarer till Revolutionary Synchrony: A Day of the World

Becoming tools for artistic consciousness of the people

In the present article, the main principles of the reforms in Revolutionary Russia in the sphere of art are analyzed through the example of the reorganization of the Higher Artistic School of the Imperial Academy of Arts of St. Petersburg into the Free Art Studios (Svomas). The studios were to become a tool for the transformation of the surrounding reality and for the development of the artistic consciousness of the people. The intended result of those transformations was the complete spiritual and material harmonization of society, while the perfection of artistic interpretation was to be replaced with the perfection of social living. The research presented here is based on the archival materials and is one of the very first publications on the problems associated with the reform of artistic education in the first post-revolutionary years.

By Mikhail Evsevyev Inga kommentarer till Becoming tools for artistic consciousness of the people

Monuments as reminders and triggers A contemporary comparison between memory work in Ukraine and the US

There are parallels in discussions about monuments in Ukraine and the USA. The reminder of the Soviet past (or in the American context, of the Confederacy) is an abject that is difficult to assimilate. On the one hand, the abject is our unwillingness to see the past and accept it; on the other hand, for those who associate themselves with this past, this is the threat of castration because through the negation of a given past a certain group is cast out from the space of representation. That is why it is questionable whether a monument can be inclusive at all. Which memory does the monument recall? Which past is castrated when a new monument is built? Which groups are fighting for recognition and representation? Which groups lose this right? These questions confront researchers and memory workers and are discussed in this essay.

By Yuliya Yurchuk Inga kommentarer till Monuments as reminders and triggers