198099 Saint Petersburg
17 Promyshlennaya Ulitsa, Room 107
190008 Saint Petersburg
16 Soyuza Pechatnikov Ulitsa
Introducing previously neglected primary sources and suggesting an alternative approach to researching history of art during the Cold War, in this article, I rethink Soviet Thaw- and post-Thaw fate of cubism. In doing so, I acknowledge the movement's major constituting role within Soviet art discourse. In a first step, I analyze an unknown strategy of apology of cubism designed by seminal Kulturträgers Igor Golomstock and Andrei Sinyavsky. This is to challenge dominant scholarly accounts paying overly attention to Soviet negative criticism of cubism while ignoring the actual complexity of debates within the allegedly monolithic totalitarian discourse. Analyzing results of the apology, I argue that the attempt to rehabilitate cubism caused an intensification of negative criticism characteristic of novel anti-modernist patterns such as by Mikhail Lifshitz, a prominent Soviet philosopher. This re-actualization of debates on cubism had both domestic and transnational premises. Ultimately, situating Soviet discussions of cubism within relevant European debates on modernist art, I nuance interpretations of Soviet art discourse as that of an isolationist.
This article examines the phenomenon of Soviet industrial and technical creativity (promyshlennoe i tekhnicheskoe tvorchestvo) from the late 1950s to the 1980s. It particularly focuses on invention and rationalization movement at industrial enterprises via the lens of Soviet industrial policy. It emphasizes creativity as a labor resource and incentive developed into the oversized system and shows its structural elements and encouragements. The paper argues that beginning in the 1950s onwards, the Soviet state placed labor creativity into the center of industrial development and own vision of progress seeing it as a resource for technological competitiveness from Khrushchev`s aim to reach communism to perestroika. The Soviet leadership, however, overemphasized creativity as workers` ability to come up with new ideas and find rapid technical solutions to industrial problems in addition to their main duties to show the creative nature of socialist labor. As a result, it developed a formalized branched system of numerous institutions and nominal awards which made creativity not only an industrial necessity but to a large extent a performative product.This article examines the phenomenon of Soviet industrial and technical creativity (promyshlennoe i tekhnicheskoe tvorchestvo) from the late 1950s to the 1980s. It particularly focuses on invention and rationalization movement at industrial enterprises via the lens of Soviet industrial policy. It emphasizes creativity as a labor resource and incentive developed into the oversized system and shows its structural elements and encouragements. The paper argues that beginning in the 1950s onwards, the Soviet state placed labor creativity into the center of industrial development and own vision of progress seeing it as a resource for technological competitiveness from Khrushchev`s aim to reach communism to perestroika. The Soviet leadership, however, overemphasized creativity as workers` ability to come up with new ideas and find rapid technical solutions to industrial problems in addition to their main duties to show the creative nature of socialist labor. As a result, it developed a formalized branched system of numerous institutions and nominal awards which made creativity not only an industrial necessity but to a large extent a performative product.
The arctile uncovers Soviet biopolitics of respiratory safety.
This article examines the history of socialist collaboration in Comecon through the lens of a large industrial project in Soviet Siberia. It examines the construction of the Ust`-Ilimsk forest industrial complex which was conceived as a collective effort of six socialist European countries. On the one hand, the project formed part of the Soviet Union’s strategy of technological colonization of Soviet Eastern lands, and on the other, it aimed to enhance socialist collaboration and integration efforts through the exchange of material goods and expertise, as prescribed by the project agreements. The paper focuses on the interplay between ideological implications, national interests and material shortages when completing the project, showing the contradictory nature of socialist collaborative construction. It argues that the Soviet central government sought material resources for the construction from ‘brother’ socialist countries with an ideological emphasis on how important it was for further cooperation in the Eastern bloc. In fact, the project exposed difficulties, ranging from material shortages typical of state socialism and the predominance of national economic interests, with the result that this socialist project was compelled to also make use of Western equipment and expertise, transforming Ust`-Ilimsk from a socialist to a far more international construction site.
The paper discusses prefiously unknown story of the first documented international voyage of the Russian whaling vessel throught the perspective of the early experience of interaction between the Russian seafarers and the foreign judicial system.
is chapter examines the diering opinions between industrial and scientic institutions over the use of the waters of Lake Baikal in the context of Soviet development policies in Siberia, beginning in the 1950s. It argues that institutions and people experienced Baikal as a place of contradiction, clearly illustrating that Soviet industry posed the risk of harm to the natural environment. In dierent professional layers of Soviet society, Baikal became an arena of conict over water (and nature more broadly) and the lake’s own, natural ability to purify chemical waste discharged into the waters. Employing new archival sources, such as institutional and individual correspondence and reports, this chapter discusses the role of Baikal in the interplay between industry and environment at the institutional level and contributes to the scholarship on Soviet postwar environmental history.
Aleksandr Turbin looks at the ethnically diversified merchant communities of the far east of Russia, investigating the means with which Russian citizenship was acquired, and their evolution, within the dynamics of inclusion animating the Priamurye region during the thirty years preceding the war. He pays particular attention to the rhetoric of the discourse concerning the inclusion and exclusion of individuals on the grounds of local, national, racial and other forms of classification. To understand more fully the nature and role to be attributed to Russian citizenship, the author made a comparison not only of local or regional contexts, but also of global processes, by considering the relationship between elements present within the empire and by measuring them against those of other empires of the time. This approach reveals the constant search for alternative languages with which to discuss the relationship between sovereignty, political community and individuals, bringing into question a teleological narrative on the transformation of Russian citizenship.
Over the 20th century, there were significant changes in children's health and enormous gains in pediatric healthcare because of systematic healthcare development including public health interventions. This study reviews children’s morbidity and mortality at the end of the 19th century by examining historical medical records of the Children’s Clinic of Tomsk Imperial University (Western Siberia, Russian Empire). We reviewed the official books of the inpatient department`s records between 1893 and 1899 as well as outpatient department’s records for the one-year period of 1899. The study confirms that mortality due to infectious diseases remained in first place among all other causes.
Although nation and empire – as well as the organicist and universalist visions mirroring them – are usually put in opposition to each other, this article argues that the two can create synergistic alliances. The attempt of the Danish dynastic union proposal to Sweden in 1810 sheds light on the repertoire of rhetoric and arguments the state could harness to substantiate its potential to rule over diverse populations. First, the paper demonstrates how the trope of Scandinavian kinship was formulated in the Danish public debate during the transitional period, or what Koselleck calls Sattelzeit. Then, the article shows how this language was embedded into power relations and configured to reinforce the imperial aspirations of the Nordic amalgamation, meaning the fusion of the Scandinavian nations. The core sources I consult are the pamphlets published to advertise union-building and the documents stored in the folders of the Royal Archive in Copenhagen (Rigsarkivet).
This paper discusses several ethical issues related to clinical trials within the Soviet system of drug development and testing, which reflected larger ideological principles of healthcare organization in the ussr, with its focus on eradicating market elements from drug development. The centralized state-controlled system was thought to combat such drawbacks of free-market drug development as high prices and aggressive advertising; also to discourage the duplication of research by numerous independent actors that was perceived to be common in capitalist countries. Another significant ethical issue was the Soviet emphasis on the unity of scientific research and clinical treatment. Their strict separation, introduced to support normative standards defined by the U.S. pharmaceutical drug testing system, was rejected in the ussr where knowledge of new treatment options came from treatment practice, not laboratory-like experimental conditions of randomized controlled double-blind trials. The Soviet design was closer to so-called ‘pragmatic trials’ that focus on solving ‘real-life’ problems in clinical practice. Not all ethical problems were successfully addressed in the Soviet model, where there were always significant gaps between neatly postulated theory and messy clinical practice. The unity of scientific research and clinical practice was difficult to achieve. Archival research shows potential ethical issues related to geographic disparities in carrying out clinical trials, and the importance of personal and informal connections in the Soviet model.
The issue opens with the keynote address by Marilyn Strathern at the 2020 EASA meeting. Entitled ‘Terms of engagement’, the keynote responds to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic and calls for critical attention to the colourings and resonances of anthropological language that works both with and against us. Strathern’s article is followed by a forum on the new far right that results from the Social Anthropology/Anthropologie Sociale round table held at the AAA meetings in Vancouver in 2019. While the forum comes on the heels of both Brexit and Trump’s term in office, the latter tumultuously ending in the storming of the Capitol, the forum’s overall take on the resurgence of the far right is that this is a global issue, rather than being merely Euroamerican. The forum’s four keynotes address how we can understand this resurgence in the USA (Susan Harding) and Europe (Don Kalb), but also in Brazil (Rosana Pinheiro-Machado and Lucia Mury Scalco) and India (Arjun Appadurai). These keynotes as well as 18 ‘open floor’ contributions highlight two important and closely related themes. The first concerns how this global swing to the right might be understood, while the second is about what this shift implies for anthropology as a discipline – its research ethics and critiques of liberalism, and anthropology’s alliances with subaltern groups, some of which may now have new right allegiances. The forum is also an experiment with publishing formats. It replicates the conference round table by starting off with papers from key presenters and facilitating broader discussion.
This issue carries two different, but related, thematic clusters. One is a special section on utopian practices and imaginaries; the other is a forum on current forms of activism triggered by one of the most dystopian and catastrophic scenarios: that of climate change. ‘Dystopia is necessarily intrinsic … to formulations of utopian possibilities’ and ‘generative politics’, argue Ruy Llera Blanes and Bjørn Enge Bertelsen in their introduction to the section on utopia – one ‘could therefore approach them as in tandem’. In turn, it is such generative politics that are also at stake in the visions of social change and political alternatives that is debated in the forum on climate activism, organised by Jing Sun, Lilian von Storch and Lukas Ley. In calling attention to a global diversity of utopian generative practices, Blanes and Bertelsen seek conceptual departure from the classic 20th-century metanarratives of progress that underscored modernist utopia. The forum on climate activism draws attention to the place and authority of science, progressive politics and climate justice in these movements and their effects. Together, these two clusters reveal a truly complex mosaic of political alterity across the world today, where anthropologists themselves are not simply students but interlocutors and critics and, above all, active participants.
Fazliddin Muhammadiev’s Dar on dunyo (“In the other world”), first published in Tajik
in 1965 and later translated to Russian, Uzbek, and many other languages, is the only
known fictionalized account of the ḥajj produced in the Soviet Union. Based on a trip
made by the author in 1963, the novel provided the Soviet reader a rare glimpse into
this sacred rite. Drawing on archival sources, contemporary responses, and the text
itself, this article traces the origins and publication history of the novel, situates it
within Soviet domestic and foreign policy goals, and analyzes the text to see how the
author tried to reconcile competing ideological priorities.
This article focuses on the rave subculture of St. Petersburg in the 1990s and demonstrates how new forms of psychoactive control and resistance emerged in the wake of the Soviet collapse. By staying sensitive to the material and corporeal aspects of these phenomena, it contributes to the socio-material studies of drug control and emphasizes that the physical body itself should be an important venue for drug research. In doing so, we build on existing literature that discusses bodies as information resources to detect drug use and identifies resistance strategies to increasingly technological drug control measures. We advance this discussion by suggesting that the psychoactive setting of rave in post-Soviet St. Petersburg gave rise to a highly particular yet notably elusive and difficult-to-define type of corporeality. On the one hand, this corporeality could be positively interpreted as a marker of resistance and belonging on the “inside.” At the same time, it could also be employed strategically by law enforcement officers to detect and prosecute drug-consuming individuals. Moreover, we propose to view this psychoactive “rave body” as deeply embedded in its spatio-temporal context—thus accounting for the influence of time and space on the materiality of drug control and resistance. In examining these dynamics, we draw on a wide range of sources, including memoirs, press materials, early Internet archives, publicly printed interviews, photographs, and video materials.
The narrowness of Trump’s defeat and the unprecedented interim period between Trump’s and Baiden’s administrations, which culminated in the storming of the Capitol, indicates that the new far right is here to stay. What are this new right’s contours? What does electoral defeat mean for its different constituencies and ideologies? How does in this context 'anthropolgy matter', to quote the theme of 2017 AAA meetings? What are anthropological implication of the warning that ‘post-truth is pre-fascism’ by Yale historian of Holocaust Timothy Snyder (2017)? While this is without a doubt a grave issue for the anthropology of the US, we propose in this forum that its scope is global, and not merely Euroamerican. What is it, about our time, that has produced this new, yet uncannily familiar and dangerous political terrain — where pilgrimages to Francisco Franco’s mausoleum have tripled, where Brazil’s Secretary of Equality on her first day in office calls for a new world where ‘girls will dress in pink and boys in blue’ and where the political machine of India’s BJP, the Hindu nationalist Bharatiya Janata Party, works through what Appadirai (this forum) calls ‘cellular, metastatic fascism’? This forum follows a round table that the journal Social Anthropology/Anthropologie Sociale organised at the AAA meetings in Vancouver in 2019.
The introduction to the archival documents published in this issue of Ab Imperio frames the broad context of the political reform of 1905–1906 in the Russian Empire and highlights the imperial dimension in the elabora- tion of the first electoral law (the Bulygin Duma law). The authors explore the multisided and layered nature of political conflicts as well as divergent political imaginaries with regard to the institution of political representation in the ranks of the imperial bureaucracy. In particular, the text explicates the nationalizing and colonializing imaginary of social engineering that guided the work of Sergey Kryzhanovskii on electoral principles and mecha- nisms. That imaginary stood in contradiction to the vision and practice of imperial citizenship that was shared by more senior officials in the central government of the empire such as Count Dmitry Sol’skii and Count Illarion Vorontsov-Dashkov. The concept of imperial citizenship can be traced to the Great Reforms of the 1860s, which created the universalizing framework of norms and institutions for diverse space and groups of population in the empire. At the same time, the political logic of the Great Reforms allowed the incorporation of imperial particularisms into universalizing norms and institutions. Analyzing responses to ministerial proposals of the electoral law by high-ranking officials of various imperial peripheries, the authors demonstrate how the institutions of imperial citizenship framed the campaign of information-gathering marshaled by the imperial center and how the language of imperial citizenship conditioned the approach of local officials to the phenomenon of political representation.
Several days after a failed assassination attempt on the life of the Russian tsar on April, 2 1879, a new regime of "permission to exercise the right to purchase and carry weapons" was introduced in St. Petersburg. Despite the fact that the first attempt on Alexander II's life occurred in 1866, also in St. Petersburg, it took thirteen years to make a radical departure from the previously unrestricted regime of access to arms in the capital of the Russian Empire.
In this article I analyze archival materials documenting how this new regime of weapons ownership was implemented. In particular, I am interested in the dimensions of locality and temporality in the practices by which imperial legislation introduced gun-control in St. Petersburg and Warsaw, the Russian Empire's most cosmopolitan cities. The archival documents that I rely on show that the gun control regulations that were intended as a repressive act of the authorities in reality unfolded as a process of negotiations and merciful exclusions. The imperial legal order's intermediaries reacted to the international challenges posed by emergent revolutionary movements, including the negotiation of the permissible restriction of subjects' rights. As a result, new practices of “public safety” were implemented as exceptional measures — both locally and temporally. This article sheds light on the imperial legal regime of gun control as a practice of ‘exception.’