Nationalism and identity in the former Soviet Union

Light, Margot
Nationalism is useful in consolidating state identity and bolstering state-building, but in the form of ethnic nationalism, it can undermine the integrity of the state. This paper examines the effect of non-Russian and Russian nationalism in the former Soviet Union. It finds that although Russian nationalism evokes more fear outside Russia than non-Russian nationalism, the violent conflicts in the former Soviet Union have been caused by the latter rather than the former. Non-Russian nationalism also threatens the integrity of the Russian Federation. The author concludes that although the Soviet Union was unique, the political use of nationalism anywhere following rapid change and economic dislocation can rapidly turn nationalism from a positive means of self-identification to a virulent ethnic exclusion of others which leads to conflict.


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Tokluoglu, C (Informa UK Limited, 2005-07-01)
This article examines the major political debates in post-Soviet Azerbaijan vis vis the very assumptions of individual autonomy, equality, national culture and citizenship, and universalism upon which modern nation-states have historically been based. The information presented in this article is based on personal interviews conducted with the leading and influential members of the Azerbaijani political elite in 1998. The interviews were based on two broad themes. The first relates to the perceptions of the ...
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Through this thesis, the perception of humanist culture and history in the Early Republican Turkey is examined in the context of the process of building national identity. The main assumption of this study is that humanism that ascends to being the main axe of official cultural policies and predominant cultural and intellectual movement of the period between 1938 and 1950 provide basis for building of national imagined community through its historical and territorial emphasis as a “civilizationist nationali...
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Tanrısever, Oktay Fırat (Cambridge University Press (CUP), 2009-12-01)
Federal arrangements have been considered by some thinkers as a panacea for containing ethnic nationalism in the ethnically defined regions. This article challenges this view by arguing that federal institutions may enable ethnic nationalists in the ethnically defined regions to consolidate their power through the guarantees that they receive from the federal centre. Although the post-Soviet Russian leadership under Boris Yeltsin sought to use federalism as a tool for containing ethnic nationalism, Russia's...
Nationalism and territoriality: the conception of homeland in the communities of Turkish origin in Bulgaria and the Netherlands
Şenses, Ahu; Çıtak Aytürk, Zana Ayşe; Department of International Relations (2014)
Territoriality has been a long neglected issue in international relations and nationalism studies. This thesis aims to draw attention to the significance of territorial relations in defining modes of human political organization and identity formation and to help establish linkages between international studies and the disciplines of geography and anthropology that problematize territoriality. It questions how territoriality can be conceptualized within the framework of particularly migrant and minority gro...
Citation Formats
M. Light, “Nationalism and identity in the former Soviet Union,” ODTÜ Gelişme Dergisi, vol. 27, no. 2, pp. 301–319, 2000, Accessed: 00, 2020. [Online]. Available: