Quasi-Colonial Wet Dreams: The #PussyRiot Effect, TV Screen Russians & Orientalization


Russian Stereotypes: Western Perception of Russia as seen through Russian’s eyes. Part III.

Ivan Bilibin Vasilisa the Beautiful at the Hut of Baba Yaga
Ivan Bilibin – Vasilisa the Beautiful at the Hut of Baba Yaga, 1899.

Through the Looking Glass: Western Media Coverage of Russia. Part 2.

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Challenge, and not desire, lies at the heart of seduction. …

Take provocation, for instance, which is the opposite and the caricature of seduction. It says: “I know that you want to be seduced, and I will seduce you.” Nothing could be worse than betraying this secret rule. Nothing could be less seductive than a provocative smile or inciteful behaviour, since both presuppose that one cannot be seduced naturally and that one needs to be blackmailed into it, or through a declaration of intent: “Let me seduce you”. Jean Baudrillard “The Ecstasy of Communication”.

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Foreword.

This post focuses not on ‘Pussy Riot’ itself but on a certain phenomenon which in case (no pun intended) of Pussy Riot was vividly revealed and will be discussed here as a typical example of contemporary Western view of Russia promoted via media and popular culture. On a side note: the author did not support jail sentence of the PR members (in my opinion two weeks of community service would have been more than enough for them). Unfortunately, it was the PR’s jail sentence which was the best PR for PR (pun intended) and made the brand globally recognized as well as helped to solidify the worst pre-existing Western stereotypes about Russia (see: self-fulfilling prophecy and confirmation bias). Continue reading “Quasi-Colonial Wet Dreams: The #PussyRiot Effect, TV Screen Russians & Orientalization”

Posts on Russian Stereotypes translated into Romanian


Old klyukvification ad with a bear

As part of cooperation between ACS-RSS and Russian Universe I’m finally pleased to announce that my first post on Russian stereotypes in the West is now translated into Romanian by the founder of ACS-RSS Alexandru Mîţă:

The first post in Russian stereotypes series is available in Romanian: Stereotipuri despre Rusia. Percepţia Occidentului despre Rusia analizată de un rus (episodul 1). Later it was also published on the Vocea Rusiei website.

The second post: Kliukvificarea: reprezentarea Rusiei şi a ruşilor în cultura populară. Percepţia Rusiei de către Occident analizată de un rus (2).

The third post (part 1): Privirea în oglindă: mediile occidentale despre Rusia.

The third post (part 2): Visurile umede cvasi-coloniale. Efectul Pussy Riot. Deformarea Rusiei prin intermediul televiziunii şi Orientalizarea.

Ushanka Syndrome, #SochiProblems & Self-Fulfilling Prophecy.


Russian Stereotypes: Western Perception of Russia as seen through Russian’s eyes. Part III.

Through the Looking Glass: Western Media Coverage of Russia.

Ivan Bilibin - Illustration to the Tale of Tsar Saltan, 1905.
Ivan Bilibin – Illustration to the Tale of Tsar Saltan, 1905.

Foreword.

The first post on ‘Western media coverage of Russia’ (and the third in ‘Russian Stereotypes’ series) reveals some reasons behind the #SochiProblems popularity. The second one will cover the relation between the image of Russia in the West and the collective self-image of Russians… as well as what I call the ‘Pussy Riot effect’.

Media clearly plays a very important, if not crucial role, in the process of constructing the image of a country and its people. Moreover, stereotypes and media are a match made in heaven. Russian stereotypes aren’t an exception. Certain agenda, (confirmation) bias, lack of knowledge or misconception of Russia(ns) in the Western media form a ‘perception’ iron curtain, invisible yet rigid blinkers on the eyes which produce a simplified demonization or mystification picture. I refer to the external manifestation of such phenomenon as ushanka syndrome. Continue reading “Ushanka Syndrome, #SochiProblems & Self-Fulfilling Prophecy.”