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Nostalgia for the Demise of the ussr in Belarus, Russia and Ukraine

In: Russian Politics
Authors:
Ian McAllisterAustralian National University, ian.mcallister@anu.edu.au

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Stephen WhiteUniversity of Glasgow, s.white@socsci.gla.ac.uk

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A quarter of a century after the collapse of the Soviet Union, its demise still has ramifications for public opinion across the postcommunist world. Using surveys conducted in Belarus, Russia and Ukraine, we show that nostalgia for communism is both widespread and persistent. Across all three countries, nostalgia is concentrated among the old and less well-off and, not surprisingly, among those with Communist Party connections. Social networks and travel to other countries is relatively unimportant in shaping views of the communist past. However, despite these widespread feelings of nostalgia, they have implications for contemporary political opinions only in Belarus. Overall, the results suggest that regret for the demise of the Soviet Union will remain in postcommunist societies for some time.

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