Socialisms and Postsocialisms in a Global Context forum

Convened by: Dace Dzenovska & Nicolette Makovicky

We are very pleased to announce the schedule of the Socialisms and Postsocialisms in a Global Context “work-in-progress” forum for Hilary 2020.

Socialisms and Postsocialisms in a Global Context is a forum for sharing and discussing work with colleagues working on resonant themes. It is also a shared space for intellectual conversation about the contributions the studies of socialism and postsocialism can make in and across different disciplines – anthropology, history, socio-legal studies, sociology, political science and international relations. We are particularly interested in thinking about what insights derived from studies of socialism and postsocialism can offer with regard to understanding the current historical moment.

We do not consider socialism and postsocialism to be a geographically delimited area of inquiry, but understand it as global and diverse phenomenon and therefore invite participation of faculty and students across disciplinary and regional expertise. We particularly welcome advanced DPhil students who want to share their research and ideas in a constructive and supportive environment. The group is convened through a collaboration between faculty members affiliated with the School of Interdisciplinary Area Studies and the School Anthropology and Museum Ethnography, but is open to all interested faculty and graduate students. Information about upcoming events will be circulated through the RSC and COMPAS mailing lists. If you would like to present your work in future sessions, please send an email to Dace Dzenovska.

This event will welcome Marija Norkunaite from the Oxford School of Global and Area Studies. Marija's paper examines three former socialist cities in the Baltics: Visaginas in Lithuania, Sillamäe in Estonia, and Daugavpils in Latvia. Visaginas and Sillamäe are planned socialist towns, built in the Baltics by the Soviet government to develop its nuclear industry. Daugavpils is the second largest city in Latvia, lacking characteristics of a closed mono-town; yet, it served as an important industrial center and transportation hub, subject to intensive Soviet-era industrialization and in-migration. This paper aims to deconstruct perceptions of ‘the state’ and statehood in these exceptional social spaces; to look at the state from the perspective of ‘the other’, elucidating how the state is understood by its subjects that are themselves perceived as ‘socialist ruinations’ in a country determinedly breaking away from the old patterns of the communist system.


Full details about COMPAS can be found here.


We look forward to an exciting conversation!