Problems of Nationalism. Contemporary and Historical Perspectives in Russia and Eurasia, 15 credits

  • 15 credits
  • Course code: 2EU005
  • Education cycle: Second cycle
  • Main field(s) of study and in-depth level: Russian and Eurasian Studies
  • Grading system: Fail (U), Pass (G), Pass with distinction (VG)
  • Course Coordinators: Alexandra Brankova
  • Starting Date: 1 Sept 2022
  • End Date: Nov 2022
  • Assessment Type: Written Assignment, Oral Presentation, Seminar Participation
  • Format of the Course: The course will be running face-to-face. Room details will be published on the course Studium page and TimeEdit
  • Syllabus:

Course Description:

The conceptualisations of the nation and nationalism have driven identity formation, state, and nation-building processes. The relevance of these concepts has a growing importance in current political affairs and relations. The course aims at developing an in-depth understanding of theoretical perspectives on nationalism but also investigating a variety of empirical cases from Russian and Eurasian studies. The course includes both historical and present-day examples.

It will take you on a journey starting from the formation of early 19th century Russian national identity and its cultural idea, progressing towards Eurasianism and neo-Eurasianism as nationalism movements and reaching post-Soviet and contemporary movements. The course will further explore how Baltic states and Ukraine have unwrapped their nation-building processes after the fall of the Soviet Union and the effect of the current war in Ukraine on the nation in times of crisis. The course will finish with a workshop exploring banal nationalism in popular culture media content.

This course is highly relevant for students interested in national identity construction, nationalism, memory studies, social movements, history of ideas, and nation-/ state-building processes. The course is focused on Russia and Eurasia.

The course consists of three (3) main, interconnected parts (modules):

  • Part 1: Theories of Nationalism
  • Part 2: Development of Russian Nationalism
  • Part 3: Empirical Cases in the Study of Nationalism

The first part aims at developing theoretical knowledge when understanding debates and theories of nationalism which can later be applied in studying empirical cases in Russian and Eurasian studies. The first theoretical part will also cover the link between nationalism and historical memory.  The second part is focused on the development of Russian nationalism, in particular. Both historical and contemporary movements perspectives are key elements for this part (early movements such as the Slavophiles, Early Eurasianist and progressing towards neo-Eurasianists and other contemporary movements such as Izborski Club, Russian far-right, and Political Orthodoxy networks such as Tsargrad). The contemporary movements lecture will further explore the activation of nationalist and conservative organisations in the light of the invasion of Ukriane. The third part examines additional empirical cases when studying nationalism: such as Baltic Independence Movements, Ukrainian nation-building, and banal nationalism in popular culture.

Recommended Course Literature:

  • Textbook: Theories of Nationalism: A Critical Introduction (3rd Edition), Umut Ozkirimli, 2017, Palgrave (Available as an e-book at UU library)
  • Russian Nationalism, Marlene Laruelle, 2019, Routledge (Available as an e-book at UU library)
  • Bassin, Mark, and Catriona Kelly, eds. Soviet and post-Soviet identities. Cambridge University Press, 2012.(Available as an e-book at UU library)
  • Kolstø, Pal, and Helge Blakkisrud. The new Russian nationalism. Edinburgh University Press, 2016. (Available as an e-book at UU library)
  • Brown, David. Contemporary nationalism: civic, ethnocultural, and multicultural politics. London, Routledge 2000.

Last modified: 2022-03-30