The course of Russian history over the past hundred years has encompassed the bloody end of dynastic rule, Soviet communism’s unanticipated rise and collapse, and the renovation of the Russian Federation’s faltering democracy into an authoritarian regime increasingly at odds with the West. Narratives of Russia’s identity as a state, nation and people(s) have been refracted through a century’s worth of rupture and mobilisation, with state-led programs of nation-building and social engineering contending with other discourses of belonging. While the vast contrasts and upheavals across Russia’s long century might be expected to encourage social fault-lines and to defy the formation of historical consensus, contemporary Russia has nevertheless witnessed the consolidation of an official vision of Russian identity. From the incorporation of Eurasianist language into foreign policy, to the state’s partnership with organised religion, and the sacralisation of aspects of the totalitarian experience, the repurposing of symbols and signifiers has placed the self-conceptualisation of Russians in a new light. This conference aims to support cross-disciplinary reflections on Russia’s long century and its impact on current identities and political discourses.
Keynote speeches and panel sessions will be held over the two-day event at St Antony’s College, Oxford, split broadly into historical and contemporary themes. The conference aims at synergy between students, early career researchers and established academics. We invite submissions for papers and presentations on relevant topics from scholars and students in all social science disciplines, including history, international relations, political science, linguistics, sociology, anthropology, and area studies. Paper proposals not exceeding 500 words should be submitted to the conference organisers via email: firstname.lastname@example.org by 10 April 2017. Completed papers should not exceed 5,000 words. All applicants will be notified of acceptance or rejection of their proposal on 17 April 2017.