In Russia, for decades, the collective memory of World War II has served two major functions. It has provided the major source of legitimatising the state and the ethical ground for sustaining the collective identity of those whose country now is very different from the one defended by their grandparents. Along with the state-imposed versions of the war and tired rituals and clichéd expressions of pride and gratitude, new ways of reflecting on the war began emerging. These are facilitated by new socio-technical practices made possible by globalisation and, in particular, by the Internet. Based on an analysis of selected Russian-language blogs, this article argues that although the nationalistic master narratives continue to function as glue for the nation, they become combined with stories and recollections that are attuned to the growing openness and interconnectedness of the world, problematising exclusionary renderings of the country’s contribution to the victory.

Language of contribution: English

Download pdf