2009-03-02

NonGovernmental Politics: Continuities a profile of Memorial

NONGOVERNMENTAL POLITICS: MEMORIAL by Philippe Mangoet

Memorial was founded in 1989 to seek "justice for the victims of political persecution in the USSR by providing a tombstone, however symbolic, for the dead, and thereby writing an alternative history of the Soviet empire." (p.83). 
  • "To promote mature civil society and democracy based on the rule of law and thus to prevent a return to totalitarianism;
  • To assist formation of public consciousness based on the values of democracy and law, to get rid of totalitarian patterns, and to establish firmly human rights in practical politics and in public life;
  • To promote the revelation of the truth about the historical past and perpetuate the memory of the victims of political repression exercised by totalitarian regimes."

Questions/Comments/Concerns

Why did the essay refer to Vladimir Putin's presidency as  an "authoritarian regime"? Putin is a president not a dictator.

I think it is unfortunate that this society is loosing its powers, because so much of Russian history was deleted by wars and they are doing an amazing job restoring it. There is also a lot of old propaganda that is unfortunately firmly infused in the thoughts of many Russian citizens and i think Memorial is doing well in at time disillusioning the populace. 

I think its truly outrageous that the Russian government in the 21st century seized the 12 computer hard disks containing the entire digital archive of the atrocities committed under Stalin. What are they trying to hide after all, we all know he committed many atrocities

Bibliography: 
Nongovernmental Politics. New York: Zone Books, 2007.

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