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Chronicles in StonePreservation, Patriotism, and Identity in Northwest Russia$
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Victoria Donovan

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9781501747878

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: May 2020

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501747878.001.0001

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Guardians of Our Heritage

Guardians of Our Heritage

Rebranding the Northwest in the Putin Era

(p.133) 5. Guardians of Our Heritage
Chronicles in Stone

Victoria Donovan

Cornell University Press

This chapter focuses on the role of heritage objects as props in the performance of national identity. It draws on participant observation work at local festivals and commemorative ceremonies to expose the way heritage objects have been incorporated into new rituals and traditions in the Putin era. These cultural practices reflect an increasingly chauvinistic understanding of the local and national self. The chapter details in particular the initiative led by the ultranationalist critic and writer Aleksandr Prokhanov to establish a new historic monument in Pskov as a focus of nationalistic reflection and performance after the annexation of Crimea. The project is understood as an elite-driven attempt to perform national identity on the local stage, reinforcing traditional associations of the region with ideas of sacredness and self-sacrifice.

Keywords:   heritage objects, national identity, cultural practices, Aleksandr Prokhanov, Pskov, Crimea

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