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The Modern Belarusian Studies book series is interdisciplinary as it aims to publish manuscripts that covers history, social, political and legal problems as well as religious studies related to Belarus. We particularly encourage submission of manuscripts that explore new approaches and novel cross-fertilizations between various areas of Belarusian studies. The substantive focus of the series is on Belarusian society, particularly on societal and cultural change. Chronologically the series covers the period from the Early Modern era up to contemporary times. The length of submitted manuscripts should be at least 80,000 words (including footnotes and bibliography). We also encourage to include (where appropriate) illustrations and other visual material. The editors welcome proposals for monographs written for academics and researchers in the field that are based on original scholarly research that makes a notable contribution to the Belarusian Studies. The series editors also welcome proposals of publish edited volumes demonstrating continuity among the contributions and strong thematic consistency.Die Reihe veröffentlicht Studien, die sich mit der europäischen Philosophie des 20. Jahrhunderts kritisch auseinandersetzen und dem Gegenwartsdenken neue Perspektiven eröffnen. Ob durch neuartige Zugänge zu einigen ihrer Hauptströmungen (Phänomenologie, Existenzialismus, Hermeneutik, (Post-)Strukturalismus, kritische Theorie, Pragmatismus, Psychoanalyse, Dekonstruktion) oder durch die Einbeziehung bislang vernachlässigter Untersuchungsfelder, zielt sie darauf ab, den genuinen Formenpluralismus der Philosophie zu verteidigen. The series publishes contributions that critically engage with 20th century European philosophy and open up new perspectives for contemporary thinking. Through the publication of a fresh scholarship on some of its main traditions (phenomenology, existentialism, hermeneutics, (post-)structuralism, critical theory, pragmatism, psychoanalysis, deconstruction), as well as through the exploration of hitherto overlooked objects, it aims at defending philosophy’s inherent pluralism of forms.
Editor-in-Chief:
Brill's Companions to the Slavic World (BCSW) is a series of peer-reviewed handbooks and reference works featuring current research on the history, visual, literary and folk culture as well as intellectual thought of the Slavic world from the middle ages to the present. Of special interest to this Series is research on the modern period in Slavic arts and letters. Dealing with persons, literary and artistic movements, schools of thought and creative genres, and written by the leading contemporary scholars in the pertinent fields, the series seeks to publish cutting edge research rooted in the contemporaneous critical discourse, which contributes to the existing scholarship on a given subject. Volumes in the Series are designed to act as essential tools needed to provide a complete introduction to a given topic of Slavic Studies. The production of the series is overseen by an editorial board comprised of specialists in the volumes’ focus areas.

Volumes 1 and 2 in the series were published by Brill, click here.
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Abstract

In the 19th century, Mennonites of German origin began to found numerous settlements in Central Asia. Of the once large number of German settlers, only a few remain in the Republic of Kyrgyzstan today, most having emigrated to Germany after the collapse of the Soviet Union. However, the village of Rot-Front in Kyrgyzstan is an exception: there are still German-Mennonite families living there who maintain a relationship with those who once left. The aim of this article is to investigate these relations with regard to the creation of transnational spaces. Memory can play a central role in the process of formation of such transnational spaces. This article explores these processes through the lens of cultural geography, applying insights of theories of practice to the study of memory landscapes using the case of the village of Rot-Front in Kyrgyzstan. The study is based on a case study approach, including field observation, qualitative interviews, biographical records and discourse analysis. The results of the study unfold in four ways: First, the formation of a collective identity is the main characteristic associated with the village of Rot-Front. Second, the role of artifacts play a minor role in memory practices. Third, the individual memory of Rot-Front is idealized by today’s ‘senior’ generation and fourth, the close exchange between those who emigrated and those who stayed is the basis of a transnational social space of Rot-Front, which will exist only as long as the generations have a personal bond with Rot-Front.

In: Central Asian Affairs
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Abstract

This article asks what role does the official national identity discourse play in building authoritarian resilience in Azerbaijan, and how do alternative narratives of particular historical events impact such resilience-building efforts? The discourse of Azerbaijanism is a source of diffuse support legitimizing the authoritarian regime in Azerbaijan. This is largely due to the role played by the ruling family in Azerbaijanism and the emphasis that is placed upon that family’s ability to resolve internal and external threats to the developing nation-state. Alternative narrations of historical memories – such as those regarding the establishment of the Talysh-Mughan (Autonomous) Republic during the summer of 1993 – act as ‘hidden transcripts’ that shed light upon the cracks in the regime’s façade, challenging its claims to historical and other ‘truths’. In so doing, ‘hidden’ alternative transcripts challenge the legitimacy of the governing regime, testing the first of Gerschewski’s (2013) three pillars of authoritarian regime stability (i.e., legitimation, repression, and co-optation).

In: Caucasus Survey

Abstract

The article discusses the features of the interaction of local, national, and global memory of the traumatic past and the current commemorative practices of Kazakhstan. The authors used the concept of transnational, multidirectional, and agonistic memory to make an extended interpretation of Kazakhstan’s postcolonial/post-Soviet situation as avoiding conflict. Traditionally, the traumatic discourse of memory in Kazakhstan is described in the context of post-Gulag analytics. On the other hand, some places as the Baikonur cosmodrome produce technogenic traumas. The fundamental concept of the article is a traumatic memory infrastructure which allows, first, to link the diversity of places of memory with the implementation of technological megaprojects in Kazakhstan; second, to identify their correlation with transnational memory practices; and finally, to show the Kazakhstani outline of trauma, which is still insufficiently represented in academic literature. The article uses empirical materials collected by the authors during field research in Kazakhstan.

In: Central Asian Affairs

Abstract

In the literature on education in Central Asia, the existing scholarship largely focuses on reform processes and administrative issues in the post-Soviet context. There is thus a lack of scholarship that focuses on both how students view the purpose of education and the relationship between education and political engagement in the region. This article aims to address that gap in the literature by presenting findings from a survey we conducted at KIMEP University in Kazakhstan on the issue of how our sample views education and the impact of education on political issues. While we found that majoring in the social sciences, the more time spent at university, and selecting a Western democracy as the country the person admires most are all salient in terms of how a person views the beneficial impact of education on political issues, we found that majoring in the social sciences is the most important factor. Regarding the debate on the impact of education, our argument is that the type of education one receives (i.e. an individual’s major) is more salient than time spent at university.

In: Central Asian Affairs
In: Caucasus Survey
Geopolitical Logics of Chinese, American, and Russian Assistance
What motivates states to assist other countries in need? Focusing on Chinese, Russian, and American decisions about COVID-19 aid, this book illuminates the role of historically contingent ideas in donors’ decisions. Drawing on the theoretical insights of the critical geopolitics tradition, it advances and tests explanations for aid-related decisions on a novel global dataset of COVID-19 aid. Rigorously theorized, meticulously researched, and accessibly written, this book illuminates the ways in which China and Russia seek to reshape the humanitarian field consistent with their geopolitical visions. Their competition with the US over approaches to aid has weakened the integrity of humanitarian system.
Free access
In: Central Asian Affairs