a Doctor of History, a professor, a senior research fellow at the Ukrainian Ethnological Centre of the M. Rylskyi Institute of Art Studies, Folkloristics and Ethnology (NAS of Ukraine). orcid: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-3365-7266
On the Issue of Formation and Decline of the Soviet Ritualism
The article aims at critically analysing the practice of forming a system of Soviet holidays and rites, revealing their inhumane, totalitarian nature and inconsistency with goals and objectives of building a democratic society. The paper uses general scientific methods of analysis and synthesis.
The historical method was instrumental in accumulating initial data obtained from primary sources and literature on the topic under study. The axiological method made it possible to consider the value content and social worth of Soviet ritualism. The article’s scientific novelty is determined by the fact that for the first time in national culture studies, the processes of introduction and transformation of Soviet holidays and rites in Ukraine are covered in the context of formation of the totalitarian regime’s ideology. While using specific facts, the author shows that from the very beginning, the Bolshevik authorities pursued a policy of forcedly secularizing the population, the displacement from everyday life (primarily public one) all forms and manifestations of religious and traditional-folk ritualism. In their development, Soviet holidays and ceremonies went through several stages, each of which corresponded to a certain period of formation of socio-economic relations in the Soviet country, as well as to topical tasks in the realm of ideology and culture transformations. Anniversaries of the Great October Socialist Revolution, the Day of International Solidarity, May Day, the Day of the Paris Commune have become a core of the system of the red-letter calendar festive dates. Official models and scenarios of these celebrations have taken their canonical forms during the years of complete domination of the Stalinist totalitarian dictatorship.
The so-called new socialist customs and rites went through excessive regulation, false pathos, overdose of communist propaganda, and therefore, not without reason, they were compared to artificial flowers.
Total disregard for the particularity of culture of individual nations constituting the USSR should be considered one of the main defects of all-Soviet Union rituals, which has eventually led to their complete bankruptcy.
Soviet holidays, rituals, festive calendar, ideology, communist totalitarianism, national identity, democracy.
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