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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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The New Russian Identity and the Burden of the Soviet Past

The New Russian Identity and the Burden of the Soviet Past

(p.78) 4 The New Russian Identity and the Burden of the Soviet Past
The Red Mirror

Gulnaz Sharafutdinova

Oxford University Press

This chapter explores the difficult historical and geopolitical context that the new Russia found itself in as it emerged after the collapse of the Soviet Union. The anti-communist ideological choice of Russia’s ruling elites stood uncomfortably with Russia’s status as the main successor to the Soviet Union. Yeltsin’s government underplayed the importance of symbolic issues in the 1990s. As a result, Russian society found itself in a state of symbolic collapse and void that, in combination with painful economic and social realities, led to a widely shared sense of confusion, shame, and anxiety.

Keywords:   Soviet legacy, anti-communism, Russian identity, Boris Yeltsin, 1990s, collective emotion, collective identity

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