Historical Reconstruction as a New Space of Patriotism for Youth

  •  Al`bina Raisovna Garifzianova    
  •  Liliya Gabdelvalievna Nasyrova    


In recent years Russia has witnessed a massive expansion of national-patriotic youth associations. Following thedecades of officially de-ideologised politics and withdrawal of the state from the discussion of national identityyoung people turned towards various informal interpretations and enactments of Russianness. The articleinvestigates one particular case of such enactment. It describes cultural, economic, and political practices of theOrthodox military-patriotic club “Rus’” based at the Saint Vladimir church. The club is a scene uniting membersof various subcultures. It was formed as a place for young people interested in history, and reconstruction ofhistorical military equipment, and a platform to discuss and promote Russian nationalist ideas. The research,based on participant observation of the club’s activities, and interviews with its members, analyses internalorganisation of the club, ideological orientations of its members, and relations with other similar organisations,notably, with the club of Orthodox bikers. The article demonstrates how in Russia a space of a religiousinstitution becomes a platform where subcultural identities are discussed and negotiated.

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