[Oskvernenie portretov gosudarstvennykh liderov v sovetskoi kul’ture vtoroi poloviny 1950-kh – nachala 1960-kh godov]
Type of publication: Research Article
iconoclasm, desecration, portraits of Soviet leaders, anti-Soviet agitation, propaganda, secular sacral
The article deals with the topic of violation of the boundaries of the secular sacral in the late 1950s and early 1960s namely, the cases of damage to symbols sacred to the Soviet ideology, such as portraits of the state leaders. I discuss why these symbols acquired a special semiotic status and their damage was punished not as hooliganism but as a kind of ritual defilement, the punishment for which was provided for by the Criminal Code of the Russian Federal Socialist Republic. Among the main sources of information about individual cases of such “sacrilege” were the archives of the supervisory proceedings of the USSR Prosecutor’s Office. It is on the basis of the surviving case files that one can analyze acts of “grassroots” antigovernment actions and learn about those who committed them, since most of these people did not leave behind memoirs or other records that would talk about their personal history.
This research was supported by the following institutions and grants: Russian Science Foundation, https://doi.org/10.13039/501100006769 [grant no. 21-18-00508]
Senina, I.N. 2023. Oskvernenie portretov gosudarstvennykh liderov v sovetskoi kul’ture vtoroi poloviny 1950-kh – nachala 1960-kh godov [Defiling the Portraits of State Leaders in the Soviet Culture of the Later Half of the 1950s – Early 1960s]. Etnograficheskoe obozrenie 2: 52–65. https://doi.org/10.31857/S0869541523020033 EDN: QOVNJM
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