Year of Graduation
Social Network Communities as an Alternative Space for Public Memory of Late-Soviet and Early Post-Soviet Periods (Based on ONA RAZVALILAS’ Vkontakte Communities)
Post-Soviet cultural situation is determined by collective identity search as one of the main cultural tendencies. The memory of the Soviet is widely appealed to as a resource for restoring consolidation, yet the memory of the very last years of the Soviet Union are left off of public discussion and commemoration. On the other hand, they are speculated on in digital memory. The internet offers a relatively free space for unofficial, non-academic, personal and diversified tributes to collective memory. My research is dedicated to outlining new strategies of post-Soviet memory work that take place online on the case of ONA RAZVALILAS’ Vkontakte communities. I am defining their specifics in comparison to other forms of memory narratives – both digital and non-digital. Digital memory of the Late-Soviet is mostly affected by emotions, nostalgia or political agenda. Specific discourse-building efforts of the administrators along with the participatory activity of subscribers result in ONA RAZVALILAS’ becoming a space for ironic, critical, yet the intentionally non-judgmental mode of reflecting on the past. The new strategies for constructing memory narratives of modern Russian history that can be brought out from analyzing this case are features of a new kind of memory culture being formed.