Transnational self and community in the talk of Russophone cultural leaders in the UK

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Since the end of the Soviet Union, the UK has experienced a dramatic growth of Russian- speaking in-migration. The chapter advances the discursive approach to identity and, focusing on the analysis of discourses produced by three cultural leaders of the Russian-speaking diaspora in London, examines how these leaders talk about their transnational selves and cultural activism, and how this talk shapes the imagination of the Russophone community in the UK. The data used derive from the transcribed semi-structured interviews taken in London in 2017. The intricate bottom-up discursive negotiation by the speakers of their allegiances to the homeland and the host country is compared to the top-down imaginaries of diasporic Russianness elaborated externally by official narratives in the Russian Federation. The chapter demonstrates that rather than producing a coherent Russophone diasporic identity, the speakers display a considerable variety in the meanings and values they ascribe to the different elements of identity and community. While some elements of the speakers’ narratives demonstrate loyalty to the Russian official doctrine of global Russianness, the interviews also display internal conflicts and tensions, thus disrupting the possibility of fixing their identities from the outside.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTransnational Russian Studies
EditorsAndy Byford, Connor Doak, Stephen Hutchings
Place of PublicationLiverpool
PublisherLiverpool University Press
ISBN (Print)9781789620870
Publication statusPublished - 30 Nov 2019

Publication series

NameTransnational Modern Languages
PublisherLiverpool University Press


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