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5 - Patriotic Wars

Late-Soviet War Memory and the Politics of Russian Nationalism

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  24 June 2021

Jonathan Brunstedt
Affiliation:
Texas A & M University
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Summary

This chapter explores the relationship between Russian nationalism and official war memory during the zenith of nationalist participation in Soviet politics (1968–1980s). It focuses on some of the most explicit nationalist writings and the involvement of nationalist enthusiasts in late-socialist memory politics to determine the war’s place in the pro-regime nationalist imagination. As the chapter argues, Russian nationalists reveled in prerevolutionary Russian themes but largely abstained from claiming the war as an unambiguously Russian achievement. That is to say that at the peak of official support for Russian nationalist expression and activism, the Russocentric paradigm did not extend to official representations of victory, even among this paradigm’s most ardent supporters. In an era defined by the growth of Russian national self-expression, the victory myth retained its role as social leveler and instrument of pan-Soviet identity and mobilization. At the same time, however, several prominent nationalist writers and activists found ways to navigate the Soviet people doctrine by exploiting areas of ambiguity and overlap with the war’s official memory. By the end of the 1970s, among nationalist intellectuals and their supporters, this patriotic parallelism had begun to redefine the nature of victory in subtle but not insignificant ways.

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The Soviet Myth of World War II
Patriotic Memory and the Russian Question in the USSR
, pp. 214 - 256
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2021

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  • Patriotic Wars
  • Jonathan Brunstedt, Texas A & M University
  • Book: The Soviet Myth of World War II
  • Online publication: 24 June 2021
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108595773.007
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To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Dropbox.

  • Patriotic Wars
  • Jonathan Brunstedt, Texas A & M University
  • Book: The Soviet Myth of World War II
  • Online publication: 24 June 2021
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108595773.007
Available formats
×

Save book to Google Drive

To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

  • Patriotic Wars
  • Jonathan Brunstedt, Texas A & M University
  • Book: The Soviet Myth of World War II
  • Online publication: 24 June 2021
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/9781108595773.007
Available formats
×