Year of Graduation
The Chernobyl Accident of 1986 in the Digital Memory of Russian Internet
This paper is an attempt to describe and analyze the digital memory of the Chernobyl Accident in Runet of 2016–2017. Almost since the happening of the Accident, it became a topic of discussions in media and was later connected to Perestroika and the collapse of the Soviet Union, becoming a crucial traumatic moment in the post-Soviet collective identity. The traumatic experience is still circulating in the digital memory of Runet, locating in the dedicated to the Accident communities and in the representations of Internet focused media. First tend to be groups of victims, their close ones and specialists and focus on the archive, while second are more institutionalized media representations. In addition to the interpretation of the Chernobyl events, both types of digital memory tend to rethink the fall of Soviet Union as well as the Soviet past in general through the representations of the Chernobyl accident. Besides that, the postapocalyptic representations of nuclear catastrophes in popular culture have an influence on the digital memory of Chernobyl on Runet and significantly add to the understanding of the accident in present digital memory. This study tries to analyze how the digital memory of the Chernobyl Disaster is being constructed between these two dimensions by different agents – communities and media, – while looking on the emerging links, common traits and differences of the Chernobyl collective memory on the whole in Runet.