Director of the Visiting Fellows Programme
Anna Korhonen
Head of International Affairs
tel. +358-(0)50-563 63 07

Eeva Korteniemi
tel. +358-(0)50-4150 571

aleksanteri-fellows [at]

Aleksanteri Institute
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Location & Connections


Visiting Fellows 2012-2013



Olga Malinova, Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow, Russia

“In search of a "usable past": Discourse about national identity in Post-Soviet Russia”
Fellowship period: March 15–May 15, 2013

Olga Malinova, Dr. of Philosophy, is chief research fellow of the Institute of Scientific Information for Social Sciences, Russian Academy of Sciences; Professor of MGIMO – University; Professor of the Higher School of Economics. Prof. Malinova is the past president of the Russian Association of Political Science (2008-2010). Professor Malinova is an Aleksanteri Fellowship alumnus. She is an author and editor of several books and articles about political discourse and political ideologies, institutes and practices of the public sphere in Russia, liberalism, nationalism and national identity, including: Malinova, Olga, Liberal Nationalism (the Middle of the Nineteenth – the Beginning of the Twentieth Century) (Moscow: RIK Rusanova, 2000) (in Rus.), Malinova, Olga,  Russia and “the West” in the Twentieth Century: Transformation of Discourse About Collective Identity (Moscow: ROSSPEN, 2009) (in Rus.), Ideas and Symbolic Space of Post-Soviet Russia: Dynamics, Institutional Environment, Actors, ed. by Olga Malinova (Moscow: ROSSPEN, 2011).

Abstract of current research:
The project “In Search of a “Usable Past”: Discourse about National Identity in Post-Soviet Russia” is devoted to a study of the symbolic struggle over interpretation of the national history as a part of politics of identity. Focusing on analysis of the official rhetoric and broader political discourse it seeks to analyze the principal shifts in political uses of the national history in 1990-2000s and to find out how the strategies of the major actors of symbolic politics contributed to the dynamics of the post-Soviet ‘crisis of identity’. The project supposes a study of practices of political uses of the national past by political leaders and public intellectuals from different segments of the Russian political spectrum in various contexts: for legitimization of decisions, mobilization of group solidarity and creating symbolic boarders with ‘others’, electoral campaigning etc. The project has started in June 2011 with support of the Russian Foundation for Humanities (grant no. 11-03-00202a) and is supposed to be finished in December 2013. The visiting fellowship at the Aleksanteri Institute is going to be used for a work at the book that should result from the project.

Email: omalinova [at]

Academic hosts at the Aleksanteri Institute: Markku Kangaspuro and Hanna Smith