Empires of the mind: Eurasianism and alternative history in post-Soviet Russia



Publication Details

Sheiko, K. & Brown, S. (2017). Empires of the mind: Eurasianism and alternative history in post-Soviet Russia. In M. Bassin & G. Pozo (Eds.), The Politics of Eurasianism. Identity, Popular Culture and Russia's Foreign Policy (pp. 121-141). London, United Kingdom: Rowman & Littlefield International, Ltd. http://www.rowmaninternational.com/books/the-politics-of-eurasianism

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Rowman & Littlefield International, Ltd


After the collapse of communism, Russia became an ideological no man's land, where advocates of neo-liberalism, Slavophilism, Eurasianism, neoPaganism and neo-Nazism waged a war for supremacy. In recent times, the Putin administration appears to have declared Eurasianism the victor in this contest and has adopted its ideology.1 The rise of Eurasianism has coincided with the flourishing inside Russia of alternative history, which, in the two decades since 1991, has become an important feature of Russia's cultural landscape.2 Alternative history is deeply hostile to the West and nostalgic for an imaginary Eurasian past, where a mighty Russian empire once held sway. According to alternative history, the "real" history of Russia has been hidden to suit the political agendas of various powerful entities such as the Orthodox Church, the Romanov dynasty, the Soviet state and Western imperial interests.

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