Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield International
Number of pages: 228
Weight: 349 g
Dimensions: 223 x 151 x 17 mm
This daring and highly promising re-reading of Yuri Lotman represents cultural semiotics in an entirely new way, both conceptually and politically. The two authors develop a radically new approach with a focus on the paradoxes of the political that arise at symbolic borderlines when these are theoretically represented not as dichotomies but as complexities, such as overlaps, imbrications, interactions, and interweaving. They re-interpret cultural semiotics to demonstrate its power as an analytical tool specifically well suited for the understanding of the controversial realities of post-Soviet, post-socialist transformation. Thus revealed, the analytical and critical potential in Lotman's philosophy of culture allows us to deal with social and political paradoxes, which is especially important nowadays, in the theoretical vacuum after the collapse of the binary schematisations of transitology. -- Irina Sandomirskaia, Professor, Cultural Studies, Soedertoern university
This is a lucid introduction to the works of Yuri Lotman and the Tartu school of semiotics that he co-founded. The book succeeds in applying Lotman's insights to the study of contemporary Russian nostalgia for Soviet times and Russian demonisation of a false, decadent Europe. A welcome contribution to cultural analysis. -- Iver B. Neumann, Montague Burton Professor of International Relations, London School of Economics and author of Russia and the Idea of Europe.
In this exciting new monograph Makarychev and Yatsyk provide a path-breaking alternative to traditional political science, exploring the insights of cultural semiotics for understanding key moments in Soviet and post-Soviet history. They apply the innovative ideas of literary critic and cultural historian Yuri Lotman to key moments, including the collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991, the taking of Crimea in 2014, and the war in Donbas, using concepts such as trauma and erasure, binaries, boundaries and transgressions. They ask about the deep social structures that foster the nostalgia for Stalinism and a return to Russian Orthodoxy. By understanding the traumas and ruptures, the authors go a long way toward explaining why and how symbols and overtones play such a crucial role in the Russian political sphere today. -- Elizabeth A. Wood, Professor of History, Massachusetts Institute of Technology