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The Red MirrorPutin's Leadership and Russia's Insecure Identity$
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Gulnaz Sharafutdinova

Print publication date: 2021

Print ISBN-13: 9780197502938

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2020

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780197502938.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 02 December 2021

Shared Mental Models of the Late Soviet Period

Shared Mental Models of the Late Soviet Period

(p.53) 3 Shared Mental Models of the Late Soviet Period
The Red Mirror

Gulnaz Sharafutdinova

Oxford University Press

This chapter advances a conceptualization of collective identity as a set of shared cognitive structures (or mental models) about the collective self. Below I argue that the Soviet Union was successful in instilling a Soviet collective identity and that the two main mental models that constituted this identity were a sense of Soviet exceptionalism and a sense of the Soviet state being surrounded by the enemy. These shared mental models represented important pillars supporting individual-level dignity and self-esteem for many Soviet citizens as well as a source of their perceptions of in-group and out-group members. Empirical findings from Yuri Levada’s “simple Soviet person” project and a variety of secondary data are used to support the central claims of this chapter.

Keywords:   Soviet identity, Soviet legacy, national exceptionalism, enemy, Soviet Union, authoritarianism, collective identity, shared mental model

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