Memory, Gender, Silence: Oral History in (Post-)Soviet Russia and the Blurry Line Between the Public and the Private

Anika Walke


The paper discusses methodological and ethical challenges of oral history projects that address experiences of systematic violence. I offer a discussion of the relationship between individual remembering and social discourses about the past, interrogating how this relationship affects the representation of gendered experiences in the Soviet partisan movement during World War II. Utilizing theoretical and methodological approaches to oral history, especially of feminist scholarship, I explore how repercussions of Soviet discourses, namely of restrictions to public and private communication, play out in the construction of portrayals of the past in qualitative interviews.

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