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Summer School "Russian Historic Memory: in Search of Identity" in Rostov the Great

Dear colleagues!
If you are interested in Russian history and issues of collective memory or identity-building, we are pleased to invite you to our forthcoming summer school. The school is called “Russian historic memory: in search of identity” will be held on 22-28 of September in ancient heartland of Russia - Rostov the Great.Over the past 15 years, the Department of Public Policy has held a range of summer schools, previously called “Baltic Practice” which focused on an exploration of the relationship between Russia and the European Union. But from this year we are changing our focus and will be exploring the complex issue of Russian identity, which has renewed importance as the Russian government has increasingly celebrated key events of Russian history.

The main aim of the school is to introduce Russian and foreign students to some of the national and regional political identity-building policies and how these policies affect citizens in the regions with their own regional or local identity, based on their own historical and cultural traditions. What kinds of identity are developed locally or are diffused from outside or ‘above’? How have existing clichés, stereotypes, and propaganda images survived? These questions will be explored by our school, as they help us to understand the connections between identity policy, struggles over policy and public policy in general. How important are identities in supporting and developing
public policies ‘from above’? To deal with these complex and interconnected issues, the School activities include 3 working groups which focus on different aspects of Russian identity-building:
 
1. Russian Identity
This group will study Russian identity in very broad terms and locate it in a wider international and interregional context. How can we describe Russian national and political identity today, how is it changing, and how is it tied into political discourse and practice? How can it be researched, measured and evaluated? And how can official/artificial identity be considered in relation to natural/local identity?

Group leaders:
Dmitry Zaytsev, Associate Professor, PhD, dzaytsev@hse.ru;
Sergey Parkhomenko, Associate Professor, PhD, sparkhomenko@hse.ru
 

2. Russian Memory Policy
This group focuses on how Russian authorities are trying to create new Russian identity: what sort of methods and practices they are using, how they are working with collective memory and to what milestones and events do they appeal to create a basis for such policy?

Group leaders:
Roman Evstifeev, Associate Professor, Doctor of Sciences, roman_66@list.ru; 
Artem Uldanov, Assistant Professor,
 

3. Getting at Russia through experience: note-taking and group work in a historic city
In this group, students will draw on their own experience in the Summer School to theorise Russian identity and memory-making. Foreign students will be paired (ideally) with a Russian student and will make ethnographic notes in key sites in Rostov and Yaroslavl. Over the course of the Summer School, the students will build on these notes C a qualitative case study C to reflect on the themes of Russian identity and memory-making addressed in the lectures. 
 
Group leaders:
Sanjay K. Rajhans, Assistant Professor, ufindarts@gmail.com;
Victor Albert, Associate Professor, PhD, victoralbert@gmail.com

How to join Summer School
We are looking for the following categories of participants: senior bachelor students (second year and higher), master students, and PhD students, who are interested in topics of identity, nation-building and memory policy.

Essay
To be successfully admitted to the Summer school participants are to choose one of the groups and to submit an essay on the corresponding topic (Russian Identity, Memory Policy, Russia in the world). An essay (7-8 pp with references) should introduce the research problem, your previous knowledge of the topic and the new aspects you
want to find out. The essays are accepted until July 25th. They should be sent to your group leaders with a copy to
auldanov@hse.ru. Please use a proper header for your email C “Summer school Identity essay”. By the 1st of August all applications will be considered and if you successfully pass the competition, you will get an invitation letter.
 
Fees
Participation in the School requires registration fees of 9900 rubles. Accommodation and meals in Rostov the Great and transportation from Moscow to Rostov the Great and back are included in the fees. For foreign participants we will prepare and send an invitation for Russian visa, but we do not compensate visa fees.
 
With any questions related to organizational issues, please, contact Sanjay Rajhans (ufindarts@gmail.com)
or Artem Uldanov (auldanov@hse.ru)

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Public Policy Department

National Research University

Higher School of Economics

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