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Russian and Rashism: are Russian language and literature really so great?

In the western media and capitals, voices can be heard that what journalists report from Ukraine under the relentless Russian onslaught should not be identified with Russian language and culture. Why not? This callous attitude rightly offends Ukrainians, because it is none other than Russian soldiers and officers, educated and bred on “great Russian literature”, who keep committing heinous crimes in Ukraine.

Following Russia’s onslaught on Ukraine in early 2022, the novel term rashism (рашизм) rapidly coalesced for referring to and negatively assessing the mixed-bag fascist-inflected ideology of neo-imperialism that the Kremlin deploys for justifying and promoting its actions. Yet, in the West too little attention is paid to the Russian language’s role in this ideology.
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December 8, 2022 - Tomasz Kamusella - Hot TopicsIssue 6 2022Magazine

Illustration by Andrzej Zaręba

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