Smolny Beyond Borders

A Liberal Arts Initiative

Putinism as an Ideology

S24_Putinism as an ideology_Venyavkin_course_pic


Course Schedule:

Monday; Thursday / 4:10 PM 5:30 PM UTC+2

Professor: Ilia Venyavkin
Semester: Spring 2024 (January 29  – May 21)
Subject: HIST
Course Level: 200
Number of Bard Credits: 4
Course Title: Putinism as an Ideology
Max Enrollment: 22
Schedule: Monday; Thursday / 4:10 PM – 5:30 PM UTC+2
Distribution Area: Historical Analysis
Cross-Listing(s): Politics
Language of Instruction: Russian

Scholars have been debating for about ten years whether the political regime in Russia has its own ideology and what its most important components may be. Could it be cynicism? Conspiracy theories? Conservatism, perhaps, or nationalism? This debate gained a new momentum after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, as various political actors inside Russia started to discuss the importance of state ideology and ideological education, including political indoctrination. This course focuses on these discussions. It offers students the possibility to read and watch key ideological (or proto-ideological) texts, public speeches, videos, and films made by Russian politicians, philosophers, propagandists, and artists, including the “Munich Speech” by Vladimir Putin, the novel “Okolonolya” by Natan Dubovitsky (Vladislav Surkov), essays by Alexander Prokhanov and Alexander Dugin, and TV shows by Dmitry Kiselev, to find their own answer to the following questions: Does Putin’s political regime have an ideologу? What are its components? How has it been evolving?