Problems of Nationalism. Contemporary and Historical Perspectives in Russia and Eurasia, 15 credits

  • 15 credits
  • Course code: 2EU005
  • Education cycle: Second cycle
  • Main field(s) of study and in-depth level: Russian and Eurasian Studies
  • Grading system: Fail (U), Pass (G), Pass with distinction (VG)
  • Course Coordinator: Alexandra Brankova alexandra.brankova@im.uu.se and Mark Bassin mark.bassin@sh.se 
  • Starting Date: 30 August 2021
  • Assessment Type: Written Assignment, Oral Presentation, Seminar Participation
  • Format of the Course: NB! Due to the covid-19 situation and teachers’ working arrangements, the course will run in a hybrid format. From 30 Aug 2021 to 15 Sept 2021 (included), the course will run entirely on zoom. Starting from 16th Sept, the course will have both a zoom and in-class format. Students will have the opportunity to decide on whether to attend fully online (both lectures and seminars) or come to class. A zoom link will be available for every class (both seminars and lectures). The IRES library will be open for students and it is booked for the whole length of the course. There will be a member of staff present at IRES library to set up the equipment and facilitate the sessions. These arrangements might be subject to change due to local restrictions in Uppsala.
  • Syllabus: https://www.uu.se/en/admissions/master/selma/kursplan/?kpid=42370&type=1

Course Description:

The conceptualisations of the nation and nationalism have driven identity formation, state, and nation-building processes. The relevance of these concepts has a growing importance in current political affairs and relations. The course aims at developing in-depth understanding of theoretical perspectives on nationalism but also investigating a variety of empirical cases from Russian and Eurasian studies. The course includes both historical and present-day examples.

It will take you on a journey starting from the formation of early 19th century Russian national identity and its cultural idea, progressing towards Eurasianism and neo-Eurasianism as nationalism movements and reaching post-Soviet and contemporary movements. The course will further explore how historical ideas and concepts are supporting and feeding into contemporary Russian state doctrines, ideology, and discourses. It will also cover the portrayal of national projects in diaspora communities, geopolitics, popular culture, and Russian state-led patriotism projects.

This course is highly relevant for students interested in national identity construction, nationalism, social movements, history of ideas, and nation-/ state-building processes. The course is focused on Russia and Eurasia.

The course consists of three (3) main parts (modules):

  • Part 1: Theories of Nationalism
  • Part 2: Development of Russian Nationalism
  • Part 3: Empirical Cases in the Study of Nationalism

The first part aims at developing theoretical knowledge when understanding debates and theories of nationalism which can later be applied in studying empirical cases in Russian and Eurasian studies. The second part is focused on the development of Russian nationalism, in particular. Both historical and contemporary movements perspectives are key elements for this part (early movements such as the Slavophiles, Early Eurasianist and progressing towards neo-Eurasianists and other contemporary movements such as Izborski Club, Russian far-right, and Political Orthodoxy networks). The third part examines additional empirical cases when studying nationalism: such as diaspora nationalism, liberation movements, spatial constructions of national projects, and Russian state-led patriotism programmes.

Recommended Course Literature:

  • Textbook: Theories of Nationalism: A Critical Introduction (3rd Edition), Umut Ozkirimli, 2017, Palgrave (Available as an e-book at UU library)

  • Russian Nationalism, Marlene Laruelle, 2019, Routledge (Available as an e-book at UU library)

  • Bassin, Mark, and Catriona Kelly, eds. Soviet and post-Soviet identities. Cambridge University Press, 2012.(Available as an e-book at UU library)

  • Kolstø, Pal, and Helge Blakkisrud. The new Russian nationalism. Edinburgh University Press, 2016. (Available as an e-book at UU library)

  • Brown, David. Contemporary nationalism: civic, ethnocultural, and multicultural politics. London, Routledge 2000.

Last modified: 2021-06-15