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Nationalism and the Alt-Right: Another look at ‘Russian Lives Matter’

52 minutes
Nationalism and the Alt-Right: Another look at ‘Russian Lives Matter’
00:0052:21

This week’s show looks at Russian nationalism, activism in Russia against police brutality, and the American alt-right. We also return specifically to remarks by Mikhail Svetov from last week’s show about an initiative he’s calling “Russian Lives Matter.”

The Black Lives Matter movement in the United States has occasioned a global conversation about racism and institutionalized prejudice. These themes resonate everywhere, even in countries without America’s legacy of slavery and segregation. In Russia, some right-wing groups have sought to adapt and appropriate BLM’s terminology, both cynically for publicity and deliberately in order to diminish what they’ve described as a divisive leftist upheaval.

In this episode:

  • (4:27) Meduza features editor Hilah Kohen dissects Mikhail Svetov’s motivations for the “Russian Lives Matter” initiative.
  • (5:33) Marlene Laruelle — an associate director and research professor at the Institute for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies at George Washington University and the co-director of PONARS — breaks down what Russian nationalism actually is.
  • (21:56) Investigative journalist Casey Michel explains America’s alt-right.
  • (30:25) “Pussy Riot” activist and Mediazona publisher Peter Verzilov talks about sustained activism in Russia against brutality in the justice system.
  • (40:31) Poet, musician, and socialist activist Kirill Medvedev argues that “Russian Lives Matter” is how nationalists “wink” at each other while pretending to be inclusive.
  • (44:53) Kimberly St. Julian-Varnon, a history instructor at San Jacinto College, responds to Mikhail Svetov’s interpretation of the American Civil Rights Movement.

“The Naked Pravda” comes out on Fridays (or sometimes Saturdays). Catch every new episode by subscribing at Apple PodcastsSpotifyGoogle Podcasts, or other platforms. If you have a question or comment about the show, please write to Kevin Rothrock at kevin@meduza.io with the subject line: “The Naked Pravda.”

Producer, sound editing, and mixing — Kevin Rothrock

Send any questions or comments to kevin@meduza.io

Executive producer — Alexandr Sadikov

Music — Victor Davydov

Toccata and Fugue in D Minor by Kevin MacLeod / Link / License

Thinking Music by Kevin MacLeod / Link / License

The Bandit by Kevin MacLeod / Link / License

Umbrella Pants by Kevin MacLeod / Link / License