Stalinist monumental art and architecture, and the ‘immortalization of memory’
Supervisor: Dan Healey
My research interests centre on the politics of collective memory in the Soviet Union and in contemporary Russia. My doctoral project, funded by a Clarendon Scholarship, explores the policy of the ‘immortalization of memory’ under the Stalin regime in the former Soviet Union, in the years 1932-1953. This policy led to the construction of monumental art and architecture marking important events and individuals. As I hypothesize, monuments, memorial plaques, public art installations, landmark buildings, etc., were intended to produce (idealized) representations of contemporaneous events and individuals, and pass these down to posterity. This research project explores the various actors involved with ‘immortalization of memory’ and the motives of this policy. It also traces the ways that the goal of ‘immortalization’ influenced the style and form of Stalinist monumental art and architecture. Aside from seeking to reinterpret Stalinist art, the research aims to contribute to a more nuanced understanding of Stalinism’s relationship to the future.
My publications include:
2018 "Stalinist Crimes and Ethics of Memory." Kritika: Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History 19.3: 599-626.
2018 w/ Thorsten Holzhauser. “Communist Successors and Narratives of the Past: Party Factions in the German PDS and the Russian CPRF, 1990-2005.” In Memory and Identity of Eastern European Communism before and after 1989. Routledge Studies in Cultural History. Edited by Agnieszka Mrozik and Stanislav Holubec, 41-73. Abingdon: Routledge, 2018.
2017 “Strength in Diversity: Multiple Memories of the Soviet Past in the Russian Communist Party (CPRF), 1993-2004.” Nationalities Papers: The Journal of Nationalism and Ethnicity 45.3: 370-392.
2016 “Interpellation in the Late Soviet Period: Contesting the De-Ideologization Narrative” Canadian Slavonic Papers 58.1: 23-48.