Peer-reviewed articles

Peer-reviewed articles have all been through a peer-review process. We practice double-blind peer-review. All material is reviewed by two independent specialists at least at post-doc level. A prerequisite for publishing scientific articles in Baltic Worlds is that the article has not already been published in English elsewhere. If an article is simultaneously being considered by another publication, this should be indicated when submitting.

Crisis of the responsible word

Juxtaposing the postcolonial in-betweenness of critical discourse with Bakhtin’s idea of hybridized, collusive and hidden dialogicality, the postcolonial memoir can be read as the self’s mapping of a paradigm shift in contemporary times. The postcolonial memoirs become a site of contested, unsettling and endless renegotiations. I shall read South Asian-American diasporic writer Meena Alexander’s 1993 Fault Lines: A Memoir and the revised 2003 version as dialogic texts. Alexander’s memoirs engage, contest and alter each other to disrupt the possibility of singular meanings and absolute truth. Instead, the texts offer a conflicting and incommensurate idea of the past and a fractured yet intensely interconnected vision of the present.

By Paromita Chakrabarti June 19, 2017

Witchhunt in northern Sweden A Bakhtinian approach

The Russian Byzantinist Sergei Averintsev writes in a critical article about laughter in Bakhtin’s interpretation of popular medieval culture that Bakhtin makes laughter too absolute and that he was wrong in maintaining that it has nothing to do with violence. I apply the reasoning of both authors on a historical phenomenon: the witch trials in Sweden, focusing on one precise geographical place. There seem to be many factors behind the witch trials, but their cultural manifestations demonstrate the qualities of reverse or carnival, culture although without having laughter as their main feature, and including violence as a main element.

By Per-Arne Bodin June 19, 2017

subversive artistic practices visualizing resistence in the republic of macedonia

The article discusses subversiveness in visual arts and how its practitioners oppose, transgress and seek changes in the existing social order. This art often employs forms of activism which affect public spaces, such as squares, streets and crossroads, aimed at involving the public in existing societal problems and challenges. The focus is on the recent events in the Republic of Macedonia where artists are intervening in the social and political conditions. Identifying these practices in the Republic of Macedonia contributes to wider debates that highlight engaged forms of artistic actions.

By Tihomir Topuzovski June 19, 2017

The grotesque body in Indian comic tradition An aesthetics of transgression

The paper examines the comic in relation to the figuration of the grotesque body in Sanskrit tradition in India. It is pursued with two objectives: firstly, to explore bodily figurations in the Indian comic tradition, and, further, to enquire the parallel elaboration of Bakhtin’s notion of the carnivalesque that celebrates the laughing body. A reading of a 14th century Indian text Hāsyārnava provides the ground for the elucidation. The paper elaborates on how the “distorted, deformed and diseased” body which Bharata refers to, the “grotesque body”t as Bakhtin says, institutes hāsya and carnivalesque discursively. The bodily desire pursued is pushed to the limits, resulting in rapture through a transgressive act.

By Rajni Mujral June 19, 2017

Functions of realist art in Sweden, circa 1970 Lena Svedberg & Olle Kåks

How the realist approach during the years around 1970 played out in the force field of society and the psyche, the collective realm and the individual, is exemplified by our two very different Swedish case studies. Svedberg’s political narratives compose montages in which fictional, metaphorical figures are inserted side by side with political leaders drawn from newspaper clips. Kåks’s allegory-like oil painting shows a stone worker working in the face of his imminent disappearance. They both reveal myths as opposed to historically manifested commodity relations.

By Charlotte Bydler and Dan Karlholm January 30, 2017

Architectural history and new reality Leonhard Lapin’s textual practice

The article discusses the writing of architectural history in Soviet Estonia in the late socialist period as a particular form of historiographic practice in which the contact between “history” and “reality” is pursued through avant-gardist practices of merging art and life. The case is built on the “historical depictions” or the short texts on the history of Estonian modern architecture written by Leonhard Lapin.

By Epp Lankots January 30, 2017

Nabokov on socialist and cinematic realism

The aim of this article is to show to what extent Nabokov’s relations to the two phenomena Soviet art and cinematic art were interrelated and subtly intertwined. Focusing on a cinematic scene in Nabokov’s first novel, Mary (1926), the analysis traces how the themes of cinematic deception techniques and mimetic violence are developed by Nabokov. It is shown how cinematic effects in Nabokov addresses the violence inherent in socialist realist aesthetics: political censorship and manipulation on the one hand, and the programmatic extinction of artists labeled as “bourgeois” on the other.

By Karin Grelz January 30, 2017

Adorno’s realism

Adorno’s understanding of realism in the present is often taken to have been simply negative. In the posthumously published Aesthetic Theory, too, the negative view is predominant; there are, however, traces of another conception of realism. Adorno proposes, although with some caveats, that what he calls an adequate conception of realism is not only possible, but also something that art in the present cannot and must not avoid.

By Sven-Olov Wallenstein January 30, 2017

drug control policies in Russia. Unhealthy, deviant, and criminal

Although agencies involved in drug control and regulation are important for the reproduction of differentiated practices of drug use, they formulate a rather homogeneous image of a drug user as an unhealthy deviant and criminal, and an unequivocal threat to society. In the process of policy realization, the most vulnerable groups of users become the main target of public intervention. As a result, stigmatization and violence against these groups becomes institutionalized and legitimized.

By Alexandra Dmitrieva and Zhanna Kravchenko January 30, 2017

The case of the Baltic Sea area Spatial Politics & Fuzzy Regionalism

This article engages with political region building by examining the diverging conceptions of the Baltic Sea region since the 1970s. It maps the fuzzy geography arising from the enmeshment of territory with a multitude of frameworks for regional action. After 1989, the region became the object of interregional and neighborhood policies established by the European Union, with shifting territorial delimitations according to various internal and geopolitical needs of the day.

By Norbert Götz October 25, 2016