Harry Rigby Lecture Series: Social Movements and Identity in Contemporary Russia

Presented by ANU College of Arts & Social Sciences

Beyond 'regime' and 'opposition': structural features of protest and social movements in Putin's Russia - Dr Mischa Gabowitsch

Protest in Russia is often portrayed as a struggle between the political regime and a liberal opposition supported by a small urban middle class. Yet all of these terms are misleading. Rather than reflecting the experiences of Russian activists, they are perpetuated by the structural biases of both traditional and online media in Russia. Going beyond such portrayals, this talk analyses structural features shared by a wide range of movements of very different sizes and orientations, regardless of whether they present themselves as political or apolitical, liberal or nationalist, future-oriented or commemorative.

Dr Mischa Gabowitsch is sociologist and contemporary historian specialising in the study of protest and social movements in Russia as well as Soviet war memorials.

Russia in search of a new identity: European Dimensions - Professor Vladimir Kuznetsov

Former Russian diplomat Vladimir Kuznetsov explores Russia's history, geography, demographics, religion and culture to explain Russia's ongoing search for an identity in the post-Cold War era. Professor Kuznetsov will examine the different identities put forward by Russian leaders and the propaganda of their creation. He will seek to offer an understanding of how Russia sees itself today, exploring traditional identities such as a superpower, regional power or influential global actor. Concluding his talk by offering a reality check, he will suggest that Russian leaders and citizens will have to embrace a fundamental paradigm shift, both in the nation's interest and in pursuit of political survival.

Professor Vladimir Kuznetsov served as President Putin's Director for the USA-Western Regional Fund for Presidential Programs in Moscow. He is currently a Professor of International Relations and World Economy at the Far-Eastern State University in Vladivostok, Russia. He worked for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and holds the title of Envoy Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary. Professor Kuznetsov served as the Consul General of the Russian Federation in San Francisco from 1993 to 1997. As the elected former Governor of Primorskii Krai, he instituted administrative reform based on democratic principles and values. Professor Kuznetsov was a Senior Research Fellow for the Institute of the World Economy and International Relations for the Academy of Sciences of the former USSR. He is an author of a number of books and articles on international economic cooperation.

The ANUCES is an initiative involving six ANU Colleges (Arts and Social Sciences; Law; Business and Economics; Asia and the Pacific; Medicine, Biology and Environment; and Engineering and Computer Science), co-funded by the ANU and the European Union.