Paroxysms of Patriotism: the Victory Day gallery

I’ve posted some pictures of the preparations for the actual 9 May Victory Day (Den’ pobedy) parade elsewhere, but it is striking the extent to which this is a celebration which still covers the city and its inhabitants with posters, flags, banners and ribbons. In part this can be explained as the mobilisation of past glories for political purpose by the authorities, but that doesn’t explain why people plaster their cars with decals, tie St George’s ribbons to their rucksacks and baby buggies, put flags and posters in their windows and generally get in on the act. This is still a very real, very present event and even while one could sniffily talk about a people who believe their glory days are past rather than ahead of them, here in Moscow it’s hard not actually to be rather impressed by the genuine passions the event arises, which are patriotic but not–at least in my experience–nationalist or xenophobic.


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