Collection : Culture and Society after Socialism

The formerly socialist world represents one of the fastest growing and theoretically challenging areas in the humanities and social sciences. A decade after perestroika, it is possible to begin to chart the topography of a diverse realm of new scholarship, built on the theoretical and methodological foundations of cross-disciplinary work. Culture and Society after Socialism, a series edited by Bruce Grant and Nancy Ries, looks to present the very best of this body of writing.

Providing close-up perspectives on the lived experience of socialism and its aftermath, this series advances innovative work that fundamentally rethinks the cultural projects of socialist states and their outcomes. Through detailed readings of historical and cultural contexts, these works bridge the study of power systems and cosmologies, material practices and social meanings, political economies and the mythic forces that sustain them.

Series Editors

Bruce Grant is Associate Professor of Anthropology at New York University.

Nancy Ries is Associate Professor of Anthropology at Colgate University.

Note: This series has completed its roster of titles and is no longer seeking submissions.

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Border Work
Spatial Lives of the State in Rural Central Asia
Madeleine Reeves
Through an ethnography of social and spatial practice at the limits of the state, this book explores the contested work of producing and policing "territorial integrity" when significant stretches of new international borders remain to be conclusively demarcated or effectively policed.



The Captive and the Gift
Cultural Histories of Sovereignty in Russia and the Caucasus
Bruce Grant
Bruce Grant explores the long relationship between Russia and the Caucasus and the means by which sovereignty has been exercised in this contested area.



Communities of the Converted
Ukrainians and Global Evangelism
Catherine Wanner
After decades of official atheism, a religious renaissance swept through much of the former Soviet Union beginning in the late 1980s. The Calvinist-like austerity and fundamentalist ethos that had evolved among sequestered and frequently persecuted...



Contested Tongues
Language Politics and Cultural Correction in Ukraine
Laada Bilaniuk
During the controversial 2004 elections that led to the "Orange Revolution" in Ukraine, cultural and linguistic differences threatened to break apart the country. Contested Tongues explains the complex linguistic and cultural politics in a bilingual...



Defending the Border
Identity, Religion, and Modernity in the Republic of Georgia
Mathijs Pelkmans
This book, one of the first in English about everyday life in the Republic of Georgia, describes how people construct identity in a rapidly changing border region.



Empire of Nations
Ethnographic Knowledge and the Making of the Soviet Union
Francine Hirsch
In Empire of Nations, Francine Hirsch examines the ways in which former imperial ethnographers and local elites provided the Bolsheviks with ethnographic knowledge that shaped the very formation of the new Soviet Union.



The Gumilev Mystique
Biopolitics, Eurasianism, and the Construction of Community in Modern Russia
Mark Bassin
In The Gumilev Mystique, Mark Bassin investigates the complex structure of Lev Gumilev's theories, revealing how they reflected and helped shape a variety of academic as well as political and social discourses in the USSR, and he traces how his authority has grown yet greater across the former Soviet Union.



How Russia Really Works
The Informal Practices That Shaped Post-Soviet Politics and Business
Alena V. Ledeneva
Ledeneva explores practices in politics, business, media, and the legal sphere in Russia in the 1990s.



Needed by Nobody
Homelessness and Humanness in Post-Socialist Russia
Tova Höjdestrand
This book offers a nuanced portrait of homelessness in St. Petersburg. Based on ethnographic work at railway stations, soup kitchens, and other places where the homeless gather, it describes the material and mental world of this marginalized population.



Not Quite Shamans
Spirit Worlds and Political Lives in Northern Mongolia
Morten Axel Pedersen
An ethnography of recent societal transformations in Mongolia and their impact on local belief systems.



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