The Oxford Handbook of Soviet Underground Culture Chapter uri icon



  • Abstract; The Oxford Handbook of Soviet Underground Culture is the first comprehensive English-language volume covering a rich history of Soviet artistic and literary underground. The international team of the Handbook’s contributors treats Soviet cultural nonconformism as a phenomenon with its own history and internal logic, idiosyncratic principles, and invisible normativity. The Handbook represents an attempt to outline the map of this realm and at the same time to draft a history of the Soviet non-official culture from the 1930s to the end of the USSR. Opening with a chapter “Theoretical Problems of Soviet Underground Culture” that defines scholarly categories specific for Soviet underground culture(s), the volume begins the historical review with the discussion of the underground’s precursors and early representatives in the 1930–1950s and continues with the section on underground cultural institutions and infrastructures that emerged in the late 1950s and developed in the 1960s and 1970s. The volume presents several approaches to mapping of the underground that include chapters on nonconformist cultures in Ukraine, Belarus, Baltic countries, Central Asia, and provincial cities of Russian Federation; analysis of groups shaped around religious and cultural identity, as well as queer and feminist underground circles. The volume approaches aesthetic aspects of the Soviet underground through the analysis of its forms and multi-media languages (performances, rock music, photography, and film along with literature and visual art) and a variety of lifeworlds, the central category of the volume, through which its contributors define the aestheticized lifestyle idiosyncratic for each artistic circle that generates artworks, along with performative and communicative practices.

publication date

  • June 11, 2024

has restriction

  • closed

Date in CU Experts

  • January 19, 2022 2:06 AM

Full Editor List

  • Lipovetsky M; Engström M; Glanc T; Kukuj I; Smola K

author count

  • 0

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International Standard Book Number (ISBN) 13

  • 9780197508213