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Consumer Culture, Branding and Identity in the New Russia
Author: Graham H.J. Roberts
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317936329
Pages: 200
Year: 2016-04-14
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As shopping has been transformed from a chore into a major source of hedonistic pleasure, a specifically Russian consumer culture has begun to emerge that is unlike any other. This book examines the many different facets of consumption in today’s Russia, including retailing, advertising and social networking. Throughout, emphasis is placed on the inherently visual - not to say spectacular - nature both of consumption generally, and of Russian consumer culture in particular. Particular attention is paid to the ways in which brands, both Russian and foreign, construct categories of identity in order to claim legitimacy for themselves. What emerges is a fascinating picture of how consumer culture is being reinvented in Russia today, in a society which has one, nostalgic eye turned towards the past, and the other, utopian eye, set firmly on the future. Borrowing concepts from both marketing and cultural studies, the approach throughout is interdisciplinary, and will be of considerable interest, to researchers, students and practitioners wishing to gain invaluable insights into one of the most lucrative, and exciting, of today’s emerging markets.
1956: The World in Revolt
Author: Simon Hall
Publisher: Pegasus Books
ISBN: 1681772663
Pages: 528
Year: 2016-09-06
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Vibrantly and perceptively told, this is the story of one remarkable year—a vivid history of exhilarating triumphs and shattering defeats around the world. 1956 was one of the most remarkable years of the twentieth century. All across the globe, ordinary people spoke out, filled the streets and city squares, and took up arms in an attempt to win their freedom. In this dramatic, page-turning history, Simon Hall takes the long view of the year's events—putting them in their post-war context and looking toward their influence on the counterculture movements of the 1960s—to tell the story of the year's epic, global struggles from the point of view of the freedom fighters, dissidents, and countless ordinary people who worked to overturn oppressive and authoritarian systems in order to build a brave new world. It was an epic contest. 1956 is the first narrative history of the year as a whole—and the first to frame its tumultuous events as part of an interconnected, global story of revolution.
Russia's Carnival
Author: Christoph Neidhart
Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield
ISBN: 0742520420
Pages: 253
Year: 2003
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Neidhart convincingly argues that Russia is a different country from the Soviet Union, growing into a Western-style, middle-class society with a free market and a democratic polity. Visit our website for sample chapters!
The Piratization of Russia
Author: Marshall I. Goldman
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1134376847
Pages: 304
Year: 2003-09-02
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In 1991, a small group of Russians emerged from the collapse of the Soviet Union and enjoyed one of the greatest transfers of wealth ever seen, claiming ownership of some of the most valuable petroleum, natural gas and metal deposits in the world. By 1997, five of those individuals were on Forbes Magazine's list of the world's richest billionaires. These self-styled oligarchs were accused of using guile, intimidation and occasionally violence to reap these rewards. Marshall I. Goldman argues against the line that the course adopted by President Yeltsin was the only one open to Russia, since an examination of the reform process in Poland shows that a more gradual and imaginative approach worked there with less corruption and a wider share of benefits. The Piratization of Russia is an accessible, timely and topical volume that is required reading for those with an interest in Russian reform. Its appeal will range from students, academics, economists and politicians to the interested lay-reader keen to understand Russia's problems and learn how they could have been avoided.
Soundscapes of the Urban Past
Author: Karin Bijsterveld
Publisher: transcript Verlag
ISBN: 3839421799
Pages: 230
Year: 2013-03
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We cannot simply listen to our urban past. Yet we encounter a rich cultural heritage of city sounds presented in text, radio and film. How can such »staged sounds« express the changing identities of cities? This volume presents a collection of studies on the staging of Amsterdam, Berlin and London soundscapes in historical documents, radio plays and films, and offers insights into themes such as film sound theory and museum audio guides. In doing so, this book puts contemporary controversies on urban sound in historical perspective, and contextualises iconic presentations of cities. It addresses academics, students, and museum workers alike. With contributions by Jasper Aalbers, Karin Bijsterveld, Carolyn Birdsall, Ross Brown, Andrew Crisell, Andreas Fickers, Annelies Jacobs, Evi Karathanasopoulou, Patricia Pisters, Holger Schulze, Mark M. Smith and Jonathan Sterne.
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian
Author: Sherman Alexie
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
ISBN: 0316219304
Pages: 272
Year: 2012-01-10
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Bestselling author Sherman Alexie tells the story of Junior, a budding cartoonist growing up on the Spokane Indian Reservation. Determined to take his future into his own hands, Junior leaves his troubled school on the rez to attend an all-white farm town high school where the only other Indian is the school mascot. Heartbreaking, funny, and beautifully written, The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian, which is based on the author's own experiences, coupled with poignant drawings by Ellen Forney that reflect the character's art, chronicles the contemporary adolescence of one Native American boy as he attempts to break away from the life he was destined to live. With a forward by Markus Zusak, interviews with Sherman Alexie and Ellen Forney, and four-color interior art throughout, this edition is perfect for fans and collectors alike.
Architects of Austerity
Author: Aaron Major
Publisher: Stanford University Press
ISBN: 0804790736
Pages: 264
Year: 2014-04-23
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Architects of Austerity argues that the seeds of neoliberal politics were sown in the 1950s and 1960s. Suggesting that the postwar era was less socially democratic than we think, Aaron Major presents a comparative-historical analysis of economic policy in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Italy during the early 1960s. In each of these cases, domestic politics shifted to the left and national governments repudiated the conservative economic policies of the past, promising a new way forward. Yet, these social democratic experiments were short-lived and deeply compromised. Why did the parties of change become the parties of austerity? Studies of social welfare policy in these countries have emphasized domestic factors. However, Major reveals that international social forces profoundly shaped national decisions in these cases. The turn toward more conservative economic policies resulted from two critical shifts on the international stage. International monetary organizations converged around an orthodox set of ideas, and a set of institutional transformations within the Bretton Woods system made the monetary community more central to financial management. These changes gave central banks and treasuries the capacity to impose their ideas on national governments. Architects of Austerity encourages us to critically consider the power that we vest in public financial authorities, which have taken on an ever larger role in international economic regulation.
A Backpack, a Bear, and Eight Crates of Vodka
Author: Lev Golinkin
Publisher: Anchor
ISBN: 0385537786
Pages: 320
Year: 2014-11-04
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"[A] hilarious and heartbreaking story of a Jewish family’s escape from oppression."--The New York Times A compelling story of two intertwined journeys: a Jewish refugee family fleeing persecution and a young man seeking to reclaim a shattered past. In the twilight of the Cold War (the late 1980s), nine-year old Lev Golinkin and his family cross the Soviet border with only ten suitcases, $600, and the vague promise of help awaiting in Vienna. Years later, Lev, now an American adult, sets out to retrace his family's long trek, locate the strangers who fought for his freedom, and in the process, gain a future by understanding his past. Lev Golinkin's memoir is the vivid, darkly comic, and poignant story of a young boy in the confusing and often chilling final decade of the Soviet Union. It's also the story of Lev Golinkin, the American man who finally confronts his buried past by returning to Austria and Eastern Europe to track down the strangers who made his escape possible . . . and say thank you. Written with biting, acerbic wit and emotional honesty in the vein of Gary Shteyngart, Jonathan Safran Foer, and David Bezmozgis, Golinkin's search for personal identity set against the relentless currents of history is more than a memoir—it's a portrait of a lost era. This is a thrilling tale of escape and survival, a deeply personal look at the life of a Jewish child caught in the last gasp of the Soviet Union, and a provocative investigation into the power of hatred and the search for belonging. Lev Golinkin achieves an amazing feat—and it marks the debut of a fiercely intelligent, defiant, and unforgettable new voice. From the Hardcover edition.
The Infatuations
Author: Javier Marias
Publisher: Vintage
ISBN: 0307960730
Pages: 352
Year: 2013-08-13
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A New York Times Book Review Notable Book, NPR Great Reads, and Onion A.V. Club Best Book of 2013 Each day before work María Dolz stops at the same café. There she finds herself drawn to a couple who is also there every morning. Observing their seemingly perfect life helps her escape the listlessness of her own. But when the man is brutally murdered and María approaches the widow to offer her condolences, what began as mere observation turns into an increasingly complicated entanglement. Invited into the widow's home, she meets--and falls in love with--a man who sheds disturbing new light on the crime. As María recounts this story, we are given a murder mystery brilliantly encased in a metaphysical enquiry, a novel that grapples with questions of love and death, chance and coincidence, and above all, with the slippery essence of the truth and how it is told. This ebook edition includes a reading group guide.
Remains of the Soviet Past in Estonia
Author: Francisco Martinez
Publisher: UCL Press
ISBN: 1787353540
Pages: 282
Year: 2018-07-06
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What happens to legacies that do not find any continuation? In Estonia, a new generation that does not remember the socialist era and is open to global influences has grown up. As a result, the impact of the Soviet memory in people’s conventional values is losing its effective power, opening new opportunities for repair and revaluation of the past. Francisco Martinez brings together a number of sites of interest to explore the vanquishing of the Soviet legacy in Estonia: the railway bazaar in Tallinn where concepts such as ‘market’ and ‘employment’ take on distinctly different meanings from their Western use; Linnahall, a grandiose venue, whose Soviet heritage now poses diffi cult questions of how to present the building’s history; Tallinn’s cityscape, where the social, spatial and temporal co-evolution of the city can be viewed and debated; Narva, a city that marks the border between the Russian Federation, NATO and the European Union, and represents a place of continual negotiation of belonging; and the new Estonian National Museum in Raadi, an area on the outskirts of Tartu, that has been turned into a memory field. The anthropological study of all these places shows that national identity and historical representations can be constructed in relation to waste and disrepair too, also demonstrating how we can understand generational change in a material sense. Praise for Remains of the Soviet Past in Estonia 'By adopting the tropes of ‘repair’ and ‘waste’, this book innovatively manages to link various material registers from architecture, intergenerational relations, affect and museums with ways of making the past present. Through a rigorous yet transdisciplinary method, Martínez brings together different scales and contexts that would often be segregated out. In this respect, the ethnography unfolds a deep and nuanced analysis, providing a useful comparative and insightful account of the processes of repair and waste making in all their material, social and ontological dimensions.' Victor Buchli, Professor of Material Culture at UCL 'This book comprises an endearingly transdisciplinary ethnography of postsocialist material culture and social change in Estonia. Martínez creatively draws on a number of critical and cultural theorists, together with additional research on memory and political studies scholarship and the classics of anthropology. Grappling concurrently with time and space, the book offers a delightfully thick description of the material effects generated by the accelerated post-Soviet transformation in Estonia, inquiring into the generational specificities in experiencing and relating to the postsocialist condition through the conceptual anchors of wasted legacies and repair. This book defies disciplinary boundaries and shows how an attention to material relations and affective infrastructures might reinvigorate political theory.' Maria Mälksoo, Senior Lecturer, Brussels School of International Studies at the University of Kent
The Putin Mystique
Author: Anna Arutunyan
Publisher: Interlink Publishing
ISBN: 1623710669
Pages: 330
Year: 2014-12-14
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GETTING TO GRIPS WITH RUSSIA’S 21ST CENTURY TSAR Vladimir V. Putin has confounded world leaders and defied their assumptions as they tried to figure him out, only to misjudge him time and again. The Putin Mystique takes the reader on a journey through the Russia of Vladimir Putin, named by Forbes magazine in 2013 as the most powerful man in the world. It is a neo-feudal world where iPads, WTO membership, and Brioni business suits conceal a power structure straight out of the Middle Ages, where the Sovereign is perceived as both divine and demonic, where a man’s riches are determined by his proximity to the Kremlin, and where large swathes of the populace live in precarious complacency interrupted by bouts of revolt. Where does that kind of power come from? The answer lies not in the leader, but in the people: from the impoverished worker who appeals directly to Putin for aid, to the businessmen, security officers and officials in Putin’s often dysfunctional government who look to their leader for instruction and protection. In her writing career, Anna Arutunyan has traveled throughout Russia to report on modern Russian politics. She has interviewed oligarchs and policemen, bishops and politicians, and many ordinary Russians. Her book is a vivid and revealing exploration of the way in which myth, power, and even religion interact to produce the love-hate relationship between the Russian people and Vladimir Putin.
In Praise of Copying
Author: Marcus Boon
Publisher: Harvard University Press
ISBN: 0674058429
Pages: 294
Year: 2011-02-11
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German critic Walter Benjamin wrote some immensely influential words on the work of art in the age of mechanical reproduction. Luxury fashion houses would say something shorter and sharper and much more legally binding on the rip-off merchants who fake their products. Marcus Boon, a Canadian English professor with an accessible turn of phrase, takes us on an erudite voyage through the theme in a serious but engaging encounter with the ideas of thinkers as varied as Plato, Hegel, Orson Welles, Benjamin, Heidegger, Louis Vuitton, Takashi Murakami and many more, on topics as philosophically taxing and pop-culture-light as mimesis, Christianity, capitalism, authenticity, Uma Thurman's handbag and Disneyland.
Mindhacker
Author: Ron Hale-Evans, Marty Hale-Evans
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
ISBN: 1118166434
Pages: 408
Year: 2011-08-10
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Compelling tips and tricks to improve your mental skills Don't you wish you were just a little smarter? Ron and Marty Hale-Evans can help with a vast array of witty, practical techniques that tune your brain to peak performance. Founded in current research, Mindhacker features 60 tips, tricks, and games to develop your mental potential. This accessible compilation helps improve memory, accelerate learning, manage time, spark creativity, hone math and logic skills, communicate better, think more clearly, and keep your mind strong and flexible.
Russia and Soul
Author: Dale Pesmen
Publisher: Cornell University Press
ISBN: 0801487099
Pages: 364
Year: 2000
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This ethnography of everyday life in contemporary Russia is also an examination of discourses and practices of "soul" or dusha. Russian soul has historically appeared as a myth, a consoling fiction, and a trope of national and individual self-definition that drew romantic foreigners to Russia. Dale Pesmen shows that in the 1990s this "soul" was scorned, worshipped, and used to create, manipulate, and exploit cultural capital. Pesmen focuses on "soul" in part as what people chose to do and how they did it, especially practices considered "definitive" of Russians, such as hospitality, the use of alcoholic beverages, steam baths, Russian language, music, and suffering. Attempting to avoid narrow definitions of soul as a thing, Pesmen developed a new way of structuring ethnographic interviews.During her stay in a formerly "closed" military industrial city and surrounding villages, Pesmen spent time on public transportation and in kitchens, steam baths, vegetable gardens, shops, and workplaces. She uses stories from her fieldwork along with examples from the media and literature to introduce a phenomenology of russkaia dusha and of related American and other non-Russian metaphysical notions, exploring diverse elements in their makeup, examining and questioning the world created when people believe in the existence of such "deep," "vast," "enigmatic," "internal" centers. Among theoretical issues she addresses are those of power, community, self, exchange, coherence, and morality. Pesmen's attention to dusha gives her a multifaceted perspective on Russian culture and society and informs her rich portrayal of life in a Russian city at a historically critical moment.
Introducing Bakhtin
Author: Sue Vice
Publisher: Manchester University Press
ISBN: 071904328X
Pages: 240
Year: 1997
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The Russian critic and theorist Mikhail Bakhtin is once again in favor, his influence spreading across many discourses including literature, film, cultural and gender studies. This book provides the most comprehensive introduction to Bakhtin’s central concepts and terms. Sue Vice illustrates what is meant by such ideas as carnival, the grotesque body, dialogism and heteroglossia. These concepts are then placed in a contemporary context by drawing out the implications of Bakhtin’s writings, for current issues such as feminism and sexuality. Vice’s examples are always practically based on specific texts such as the film Thelma and Louise, Helen Zahavi’s Dirty Weekend and James Kelman's How late it was, how late.