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From an Economic Term to a Political Concept

The Conceptual Innovation of “Self-Management” in Soviet Estonia

Juhan Saharov

The perestroika period (1985–1991) and the fall of the Soviet Union have received a great deal of attention in scholarly literature, but only a few studies have explored the detailed dynamics of conceptual change in this period. 1 This article

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Soviet Russian Primers of the 1940s

The War after the Victory

Vitaly Bezrogov and Dorena Caroli

Soviet Russian Primers during and after the Second World War Research into primers printed in the Soviet Union represents an important area of interest in the historical study of textbooks. One can observe the development of a “primers studies

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A Failed Attempt to Create an International Community of Communist Asian Studies in 1955

Huaiyu Chen

the Communist Bloc together. It was an attempt to create an international communist community of sinologists, but it seems to have been unsuccessful. Since the beginning of the Cold War, under the leadership of the Soviet Union, communist states across

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Political Power and Cultural History in the Northeastern Soviet Union in the 1950s and 1960s

Pavel Grebenyuk

1970s. The Magadan Theater was well known in all Soviet Union, because some of the best actors were imprisoned on the Kolyma and were forced to perform for the Dalstroy elite. The February 1945 staging of Verdi's Traviata by the prisoner of the camp

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Antagonistic Insights

Evolving Soviet Atheist Critiques of Religion and Why They Matter for Anthropology

Sonja Luehrmann

This article offers a critique of the common notion in contemporary anthropology that a positive attitude toward the people under study is a necessary precondition for a sophisticated understanding of their social world. The empirical sociology of religion that evolved during the last decades of the Soviet Union's existence started from the premise that religion was a harmful phenomenon slated for disappearance. Nonetheless, atheist sociologists produced increasingly complex accounts of religious life in modern socialist societies. Their ideological framework simultaneously constrained Soviet scholars and forced them to pay closer attention to religious phenomena that contradicted political expectations. Drawing on this extreme example of militant atheist scholarship, I argue that studying 'repugnant cultural others' always requires some form of affective motivation. Antagonism can be as powerful, and as problematic, a motivating force as empathetic suspension of judgment.

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Cosmonaut Gossip

Socialist Masculinity as Private-Public Performance in the Kamanin Diaries

Erica L. Fraser and Kateryna Tonkykh

parameters of respectability for the post-Stalin socialist man. Nikolai Petrovich Kamanin was born in 1908 and was a lifelong serviceman in the Soviet military. As a pilot, he was awarded the rare Hero of the Soviet Union title in 1934, one of the first

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Becoming Communist

Ideals, Dreams, and Nightmares

Rochelle Goldberg Ruthchild

Kelly Hignett, Melanie Ilic, Dalia Leinarte, and Corina Snitar, Women's Experiences of Repression in the Soviet Union and Eastern Europe , London: Routledge, 2018, xiii, 196 pp., $123.09 (hardback), ISBN 978-1-138-04692-4. Lisa Kirschenbaum

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Book Reviews

Ekaterina Tikhonyuk and Mark McKinney

John Etty, Graphic Satire in the Soviet Union: Krokodil' s Political Cartoons (Jackson, MS: University Press of Mississippi, 2019). 276 pp. ISBN: 978-1496821089 ($30) John Etty's recent book represents a holistic and meticulous study of

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Visuals in History Textbooks

War Memorials in Soviet and Post-Soviet School Education from 1945 to 2021

Mischa Gabowitsch

bibliometric database of history textbooks from the Soviet Union and eleven of the fifteen successor states. This article, which is based on a longer unpublished manuscript, presents the theoretical background to the study and some of its findings. War

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Geographical imagination and sociality of sailors of the Black Sea merchant fleet during the Cold War

Caroline Humphrey

The article discusses Soviet sailors' experiences away from home and seaborne social relations—the particular sociality brought to the Black Sea region by ships and sailors. The officers and sailors employed by the Black Sea Fleet had much wider horizons than ordinary Soviet citizens—and the small temporary society of the ship interpenetrated with the varied Black Sea inhabitants in limited but significant ways. They contrasted “high seas” of the world's great oceans, the setting for dangerous, daring and profitable exploits, with the enclosed drudgery of the Black Sea routes. The article shows how the Cold War inflected the imaginaries and practices of seamen and others. It argues that an anthropology of the sea can develop an analysis that combines regional specificities with visions that extend beyond the local and national.