Event Date February 7, 2017 6:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Location – Old Debating Chamber, National Assembly for Wales
The centenary of the Russian Revolution marks a major opportunity for reflection across the world as the global influence of 1917 is undisputed, not least as the origins of world’s first communist state. Dr Matt Rendle of the University of Exeter will explore the difficulties of doing so in contemporary Russia.
Putin has agreed that the Revolution is too important to ignore, but it is clear that 1917 does not fit into the ‘useable’ past forged in Russia since 2000. The February Revolution is unpalatable as it championed western democratic values, whilst the October Revolution remains contentious as the source of the Soviet Union, whose legacy continues to divide Russians. In addition, the whole concept of revolution is feared after the ‘colour’ revolutions on Russia’s periphery across the last decade and the global impact of the Arab Spring. Nevertheless, 1917 is still invoked frequently by Putin to justify actions, whether in Ukraine or clamping down on civil unrest or terrorism. In this talk, Dr Matt Rendle will explore the legacy of 1917 in contemporary Russia and will examine how Russia might commemorate its centenary.