The Future of the Soviet Past

The Politics of History in Putin's Russia

Edited by Anton Weiss-Wendt and Nanci Adler

Contributions by Kiril Feferman, Johanna Dahlin, Boris Noordenbos, Stephen M. Norris, Nikolay Koposov, George Soroka, Štěpán Černoušek, Ivan Kurilla, Nikita Petrov and Steven A. Barnes

Published by: Indiana University Press

304 Pages, 6.00 x 9.00 in, 13 b&w photos

  • Paperback
  • 9780253057624
  • Published: October 2021


  • Hardcover
  • 9780253057594
  • Published: October 2021


  • eBook
  • 9780253057600
  • Published: October 2021


In post-Soviet Russia, there is a persistent trend to repress, control, or even co-opt national history. By reshaping memory to suit a politically convenient narrative, Russia has fashioned a good future out of a "bad past."

While Putin's regime has acquired nearly complete control over interpretations of the past, The Future of the Soviet Past reveals that Russia's inability to fully rewrite its Soviet history plays an essential part in its current political agenda. Diverse contributors consider the many ways in which public narrative shapes Russian culture—from cinema, television, and music to museums, legislature, and education—as well as how patriotism reflected in these forms of culture implies a casual acceptance of the valorization of Stalin and his role in World War II.

The Future of the Soviet Past provides effective and nuanced examples of how Russia has reimagined its Soviet history as well as how that past still influences Russia's policymaking.