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Elliott School of International Affairs, Lindner Family Conference Room (602) Free Event

1957 E St NW

Free Event

Book Launch - Jill Dougherty in conversation with author Gulnaz Sharafutdinova


A well-known trope that originated during the Cold War, Homo Sovieticus has experienced a comeback in the public debates over the last decade or so. It resurfaced specifically after Russia's 2014 annexation of Crimea, and is also used to explain Russians’ current attitudes toward the war with Ukraine. What does the term mean? Who created it? Why did it gain currency then, and why is it used today?  Gulnaz Sharafutdinova’s book, The Afterlife of the Soviet Man (Bloomsbury Press, 2023) answers these questions by following the biographies and intellectual work of the writers, dissidents and scientists who contributed to developing this concept, including Czesław Miłosz, Georgy Markov, Alexander Zinoviev, Yuri Levada, and Natalia Kozlova. Her main objective in historicizing the term is to look with a critical eye at the words and terms we rely on, the meanings they contain, and the biases they reflect. 

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