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Regular version of the site
Contacts

Address:
198099 Saint Petersburg
17 Promyshlennaya Ulitsa, Room 107

Phone:+7 (812)786-92-49 

Postal address: 
190008 Saint Petersburg
16 Soyuza Pechatnikov Ulitsa
 

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Administration
Department Head Alexander Semyonov
Academic Supervisor Evgeniy Anisimov
Book
From Cotton and Smoke: Łódź – Industrial City and Discourses of Asynchronous Modernity 1897–1994

Zysiak A., Śmiechowski K., Każmierska K. et al.

Lodz University Press, Jagiellonian University Press, distributed by Columbia University Press, 2018.

Book chapter
Prisoners: Experiencing the Criminal Other

Vasilyev P., Vidor G. M.

In bk.: Encounters with Emotions: Negotiating Cultural Differences since Early Modernity. NY: Berghahn Books, 2019. P. 184-206.

International Joint Seminar of HSE History Students Took Place at HSE Saint Petersburg

The first part of the seminar ‘Culture of Historical Memory: World War II and Political Regimes of the 20th Century’, dedicated to the politics of history and memory of World War II in Germany, controversies and intersections between public, family and private memories of the war was held at Humboldt University in Berlin on July 6-12.

The seminar was organized by HSE Department of History and Dietmar Wulff, Associate Professor at the Department. During the second part of the seminar, which took place on July 22-27 in Saint Petersburg, students and doctoral students learned about the special features of forming historical memory in modern Russia. The participants took part in field trips to memorial sites of St. Petersburg, later they discussed modern Russian policy of forming historical memory about the war and attempts to create a collective identity of Russian citizens based on the memory of the Great Patriotic War.

German students started their fieldtrips with a visit to Victory Park, to see a brick factory used as crematorium during the WWII blockade. During the tour, prepared by history students of HSE in St. Petersburg, the workshop participants learnt more about the monument complex located in the park and dedicated to the victims of the Leningrad Blockade. Then the students visited the Piskarevsky memorial, dedicated to the Road of Life.

After the excursion to the memorials, the workshop participants discussed the features of forming the memory of the war and the blockade in modern St. Petersburg and came to the conclusion that modern practices of commemoration are borrowed from the Soviet past. Both anniversaries and places of remembrance continue the traditions of memory established in the Soviet Union. The Great Patriotic War is presented as a purely heroic event in the collective memory of Russian citizens, as a feat of the Soviet people and a key event in Russian history.

Such images of war have become the basis for forming Russian collective identity, and the memories of the crimes of Soviet soldiers, serious mistakes by the government and the countless senseless victims during the war are all taboo.

Having analyzed the content of the political discussion held in Russia on the eve of the 70th anniversary of the victory, and comparing the results of this analysis with practical studies about the existence and functioning of war remembrance, the workshop participants concluded that forming a certain kind of memory about the Great Patriotic War is one of the most important tasks of the Russian government. The memory of the war, of the heroic feat of the Soviet people, is an instrument for the legitimization of the present political regime.

The unique format of the discussion and international pool of the participants allowed them to discuss different questions important for both Russian and German students in a free open-minded way. Both groups showed interest in further cooperation between the Humboldt University and HSE in Saint Petersburg and in organising international research seminars on a regular basis.