Russia: Art Resistance and the Neoconservative Zeitgeist
This book explores how artistic strategies of resistance have survived under the conservative-authoritarian regime which has been in place in Russia since 2012. It discusses the conditions under which artists work as the state spells out a new state cultural policy, aesthetics change and the state attempts to define what constitutes good taste. It examines the approaches artists are adopting to resist state oppression and to question the present system and attitudes to art. The book addresses a wide range of issues related to these themes, considers the work of individual artists and includes besides its focus on the visual arts also some discussion of contemporary theatre. The book is interdisciplinary: its authors include artists, art historians, theatre critics, historians, linguists, sociologists and political scientists from Russia, Europe and the United States.
Russia’s search for a national idea, which has continued uninterrupted for the past two decades, has fi nally achieved its goal. The national idea has been found in Russian culture; or, more precisely, in a specifi c formulation of the concept of ‘Russian culture’. Recognition of national identity by means of belonging to a common culture makes it possible to eliminate (actually to ignore) a variety of social divisions, be they ethnic, religious, social or political. The idea of a common culture, in which the term ‘Russian’ refers not to ethnic and not even to national in the sense of the state but to a civilizational frame, makes it universal and opens up prospects for an integrated political community