The Post-Soviet Russian Media: Conflicting Signals

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Birgit Beumers, Stephen Hutchings, Natalia Rulyova
Taylor & Francis, Nov 26, 2008 - Language Arts & Disciplines - 264 pages
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This book explores developments in the Russian mass media since the collapse of the USSR in 1991. Complementing and building upon its companion volume, Television and Culture in Putin's Russia: Remote Control, it traces the tensions resulting from the effective return to state-control under Putin of a mass media privatised and accorded its first, limited, taste of independence in the Yeltsin period. It surveys the key developments in Russian media since 1991, including the printed press, television and new media, and investigates the contradictions of the post-Soviet media market that have affected the development of the media sector in recent years. It analyses the impact of the Putin presidency, including the ways in which the media have constructed Putin’s image in order to consolidate his power and their role in securing his election victories in 2000 and 2004. It goes on to consider the status and function of journalism in post-Soviet Russia, discussing the conflict between market needs and those of censorship, the gulf that has arisen separating journalists from their audiences. The relationship between television and politics is examined, and also the role of television as entertainment, as well as its role in nation building and the projection of a national identity. Finally, it appraises the increasingly important role of new media and the internet. Overall, this book is a detailed investigation of the development of mass media in Russia since the end of Communism and the collapse of the Soviet Union.

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About the author (2008)

Birgit Beumers is Reader in Russian at the University of Bristol. She completed her D.Phil at St Antony’s College, Oxford and specialises on contemporary Russian culture, especially cinema and theatre. Her publications include Burnt by the Sun (2000), Nikita Mikhalkov (2005), PopCulture: Russia! (2005) and, as editor, Russia on Reels: The Russian Idea in Post-Soviet Cinema (1999) and 24 Frames: Russia and the Soviet Union (2007). She is editor of the online journal KinoKultura and of the journal Studies in Russian and Soviet Cinema.

Stephen Hutchings has a Chair in Russian Studies at the University of Manchester, having previously been Professor of Cultural Studies at the University of Surrey, and Associate Professor of Russian at the University of Rochester, New York. He has published three monographs, two edited volumes, and numerous articles on aspects of Russian literature, film and media.

Natalia Rulyova is a Lecturer in Russian at the Centre for Russian and East European Studies, University of Birmingham since 2006. She completed her PhD on Joseph Brodsky at the University of Cambridge. Subsequently, she was a lecturer and research fellow at the University of Surrey, where she worked on the project ‘Post-Soviet Television Culture’ headed by Stephen Hutchings. She has authored and edited a number of articles on Russian poetry in translation, film and media, and is currently co-writing a monograph on post-Soviet television culture.

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