Memory of the Great Patriotic war: Victory day in the historical consciousness of Russians

Memory of the Great Patriotic war:
Victory day in the historical consciousness of Russians

Golovashina О.V.

Cand. Sci. (Hist.), Assoc. Prof., Tambov State University, Tambov, Russia

Linchenko A.A.

Cand. Sci. (Philos.), Assoc. Prof., Research fellow, Financial University, Lipetsk branch, Lipetsk, Russia

Anikin D.A.

Cand. Sci. (Philos.), Assoc. Prof., Saratov State University, Saratov, Russia

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Golovashina О.V., Linchenko A.A., Anikin D.A. Memory of the Great Patriotic war: Victory day in the historical consciousness of Russians. Sotsiologicheskie issledovaniya [Sociological Studies]. 2017. No 3. P. 123-133


The article is devoted to the results of the content analysis of the Victory Day representations in the contemporary Russian Internet space between 2010- and 2015. The peculiarities of the internet environment as a mediator of cultural memory are determined. The main sources of information were the Internet blogs (,, social networks, etc.), integrated in the search system Yandex-blogs. The data of the content analysis are compared to the results of sociological research of historical consciousness and historical memory. Specific features of mass perceptions about the importance of the Victory Day are analyzed in the context of the transformation of the communicative memory of the Great Patriotic War into the cultural memory. It is concluded that there are significant contradictions in the mass historical consciousness of the contemporary Russians. There exist a well-known selectiveness, sharpness in assessment, the dominance of the Soviet ideological cliches, interrelation of the discussion with current external and internal political problems, actualization of the family memory and usage of the theme of the Victory in the Great Patriotic War as a platform for criticizing current government. The Internet space shows general trend of the modern Russian memory culture: gradual devaluation of the historical meanings and, accordingly, consideration of particularistic versions of the historical memory (family, local social group), the polarization of mass historical consciousness. The Internet space of historical consciousness of Russians demonstrates actualisation of the theme of the past revaluation, the theme of family memory, the theme of legitimation of power through the Feast of Victory, the theme of the modern generation of the Russians, that is not worthy of memory. The idea of the past revaluation is actualised in the context of the debates about the value of the Victory, the role and place of I. V. Stalin, comparison between communism and fascism, opposition of the official version of the Victory to the “soldier” memory of it. The theme of family memory spread in the Internet blogs is connected with the discussion of the war family memories, the desire of the Russians to consider the victory in the war through the autobiographical memory of the loved ones, keeping the victory in the war as a fundamental symbol of personal and social pride. The subject of legitimizing power gained its popularity in the context of criticism of the official politics of memory and the desire of the state to justify modern domestic and foreign policy in the context of using symbols of the Victory. The idea of the generation that is not worthy of memory is usually discussed in the context of the low level of knowledge about the war and the emotional belonging of the young generation to the tragic events of the war.

historical consciousness; historical identity; Internet; Victory Day; historical memory


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Content No 3, 2017