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Transition in post-USSR Europe: The Human Factor in Political Identity Formation

Grišinas, Arvydas (2015) Transition in post-USSR Europe: The Human Factor in Political Identity Formation. Doctor of Philosophy (PhD) thesis, University of Kent,. (Access to this publication is currently restricted. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)

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Abstract

This interdisciplinary dissertation seeks a more holistic and broader understanding of political identity formation processes in post-USSR Eastern Europe. It seeks to develop a theoretical approach for assessing the non-rationalistic factors, which influence domestic and foreign policy, political attitudes and identities in the region – including associative symbolism, human experience, political images and historical narratives. The research is based on the main case of Lithuania, which is analysed in the first three chapters of the dissertation from three perspectives: the historical/political, the intellectual/narrative and the experiential/symbolic. Along the way, a theory is being inductively elaborated, offering new insights into the process of Lithuanian political identity formation. In the next two chapters, other cases are also explored in order to examine the theory’s applicability and broaden its spectrum of inquiry. These include Russia, Poland, Estonia and the ongoing conflict in Ukraine. Qualitative methods are used in this dissertation, including textual and visual analysis (of primary and secondary literary sources, photographs, film, etc.), unstructured interviews, historical analysis, as well as political, philosophical and anthropological theoretical approaches by Roland Barthes, Raoul Girardet, Alasdair MacIntyre, Charles Taylor, Victor Turner, Arpad Szakolczai, and others. The dissertation seeks to improve our understanding of political identity formation, periods of political transition and the importance of human experience to politics. It also aims at developing a theory capable of accounting for the often unrecognised factors of historical narrative, political symbolism and emotional associative charge. As a result it makes a contribution towards a better understanding of post-USSR Eastern European politics and thus to more effective policy towards the region, which is gaining increasing importance in global political arena.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctor of Philosophy (PhD))
Thesis advisor: Pabst, Adrian
Uncontrolled keywords: Post-Soviet Eastern Europe Lithuania Russia Ukraine Poland Estonia Imaginary Narrative Identity Liminality Violence Sajudis Maidan USSR Transition Mask
Subjects: J Political Science > JC Political theory
Divisions: Faculties > Social Sciences > School of Politics and International Relations
Depositing User: Users 1 not found.
Date Deposited: 14 Oct 2015 13:00 UTC
Last Modified: 29 May 2019 16:08 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/50988 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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