Natalya Veselkova 1, Mikhail Vandyshev 2, Elena Pryamikova 3
  • 1 Ural Federal University (Russia), 19 Mira str., Ekaterinburg, 620002, Russian Federation
  • 2 Ural Federal University (Russia), 19 Mira str., Ekaterinburg, 620002, Russia
  • 3 Ural State Pedagogical University, 26 Kosmonavtov av., Ekaterinburg, 620017, Russia

Young Towns: Scaling Sites of Memory

2017, vol. 16, No. 3, pp. 36–65 [issue contents]
It has been assumed to regard young towns built during Soviet times as possessing only a “short history”. To deal with the sites of memory of such settlements, an especial research approach is elaborated integrating both theoretical resources of memory studies and scale studies. According to this approach, sites of memory are analyzed as a), in temporal and space coordinates, and b), from the perspective of “ordinary” people. Two groups of scales, 1) worldwide and national, and 2) regional and urban, are considered as the materials of the empirical research in the four young Ural towns of Kachkanar, Krasnoturinsk, Lesnoy, and Zarechny. The main methods of data-gathering were go-along interviewing and photo mapping. The data sources include the archives of the local, regional, and central printed presses, archival documents including minutes of Communist Party meetings, the official website of each town, and others. As our research has shown, the most time-depth, up to centuries and millennia, is characteristic of the sites of memory on a regional scale; in other cases, memory extends no further than the biography of two or three generations. Large scales provide the residents of small settlements with a portal to the big world, helping them to feel a connectedness with other cities and countries. Local-scale sites of memory symbolically unites people in a single community, allowing a shared perception of space and local competence. In conclusion, the analytical traps inherited from the original concepts are discussed as well as the opportunities to overcome them and the prospects for further research, such as the study of scaling as a process, coming from above and below, purposefully and spontaneously, or formally and informally. Of particular interest are the scales intersections, the slip of the sites of memory on the scales, and the fixing by the effects of understatement and exaggeration of scale (scale-ups and scale-downs).
Citation: Veselkova N., Vandyshev M., Pryamikova E. (2017) Molodye goroda: masshtaby mest pamyati [Young Towns: Scaling Sites of Memory]. The Russian Sociological Review, vol. 16, no 3, pp. 36-65 (in Russian)
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