Cover Osteuropa 6/2008

In Osteuropa 6/2008

Remembrance as a State Event
History and Power in Russia

Boris Dubin

Deutsche Fassung


In Russia, the state claims a monopoly on the creation of history and passing on of memory. Every assessment of past and contemporary events that deviates from the official line is perceived as hostile. The memorialisation of the Great Patriotic War is a perfect example. The symbol of remembrance “victory in the war” was created in the Brezhnev era with all the power of the Soviet state. In the Putin era, it was reactivated. It serves the creation of a collective, the definition of an enemy, and the legitimation of rule. Consensus on the victory’s importance for Russia is so widespread that even scepticism is appropriate as to whether family memory is the place for the counter-memory of the GULag.

(Osteuropa 6/2008, pp. 57–66)