Bringing together scholars from Russia, the United States and Europe, this collection of essays is the first to explore the slippery phenomenon of post-Soviet nostalgia by studying it as a discursive practice serving a wide variety of ideological agendas. The authors demonstrate how feelings of loss and displacement in post-Soviet Russia are turned into effective tools of state building and national mobilization, as well as into weapons for local resistance and the assertion of individual autonomy. Drawing on novels, memoirs, documentaries, photographs and Soviet commodities, Post-Soviet Nostalgia is an invaluable resource for historians, literary scholars and anthropologists interested in how Russia comes to terms with its Soviet past.
Table of Contents
Introduction: The Many Practices of Post-Soviet Nostalgia: Affect, Appropriation, Contestation
Otto Boele, Boris Noordenbos, and Ksenia Robbe
Part I: Affect
1. Journeying to the Golden Spaces of Childhood: Nostalgic Longing in the Online Community The USSR Our Motherland Through the Visual Image of the Soviet Toy
2. Second-hand Nostalgia: On Charms and Spells of the Soviet Trukhliashechka
Serguei Alex. Oushakine
3. Village Voice: Peasant Nostalgia in Recent Oral History
Part II: Appropriation
4. Longing for Fear and Darkness: "Oppositional Grassroots Stalinism" in the 1970s-80s and Its Influence on Legitimizing Political Elites in Today’s Russia
5. Remembering Chernobyl Through the Lens of Post-Soviet Nostalgia
Emily D. Johnson
6. To Be Continued: Post-Soviet Nostalgia in Sergei Miroshnichenko’s Time-Lapse Documentary Series Born in the USSR
Part III: Contestation
7. Under the Sign of Nostalgia: The Cultural Revolution in Perm and Its Narrative Representations
Marina Abasheva and Vladimir Abashev
8. Nostalgia Inside Out: Re-addressing Post-Soviet Loss in Andrei Astvatsaturov’s Novels
9. "Perestroika and the 1990s – Those Were the Best Years of My Life!" Nostalgia for the Post-Soviet Limbo
Afterword: After Nostalgia: A Backward Glance at a Backward Glance
Kevin M.F. Platt
Otto Boele is Associate Professor of Russian literature at Leiden University.
Boris Noordenbos is Assistant Professor in Literary and Cultural Analysis at the University of Amsterdam.
Ksenia Robbe is Assistant Professor in African and Comparative Literature at Leiden University.