As the socialist project went bankrupt with the break-up of the USSR, workers were left in an ideological vacuum. It was filled either by hope-filled dreams of successful individual adaptation to the capitalist order, or by nostalgic sentiment towards the Soviet past as a means of critiquing the present, or (on the contrary) by blaming all the current problems on the Soviet past in an attempt at ‘decommunisation’ and investing in nationalist or religious conservative projects.
Anastasiya Ryabchuk is Senior lecturer at the National University of Kyiv-Mohyla Academy. Currently she is a Junior Visiting Fellow of the IWM’s Ukraine in European Dialogue program.
Comments by Marci Shore (Associate Professor of History, Yale University; IWM Visiting Fellow)