Oral Stories about the Mezen Churches as a Subject of Interdisciplinary Research

Journal Title: Arctic and North - Year 2020, Vol 39, Issue 39


The article analyzes oral narratives about the destruction of Orthodox religious buildings. Sources of the research are tests recorded during the folklore-anthropological expeditions of the Northern (Arctic) Federal University in the Mezen district of the Arkhangelsk Oblast (2009–2018). By the beginning of the 1930s, in Russia, the concept of “militant atheism” took shape and was approved, based on the idea of the counter-revolutionary meaning of religion and the anti-Soviet activities of believers. The object of our research is interdisciplinary. It is the subject of the study for oral history, folklore, social and cultural anthropology, and sociology. The sacrilege narratives are considered not so much as folklore or historical source, but as “a component of a local text ... whose function is not to “reflect”, but to “create” urban history, mythology, set the parameters for local identity.” A metanarrative is represented by the memories of the Mezen residents about the destruction of churches and the persecution of people for religious beliefs. It includes stories with the motives of dropping bells, punishment for the destruction of a church; desecration of cemeteries, the destruction of icons, the salvation of church property by the vil-lagers, the conversion of churches to schools, granaries, clubs or stables, and repression against priests and parishioners. The research allows tracing the dynamics of mass representations. There was a gap in the cultural memory of the Mezen residents. The Mezen religious stories testify that, in the cultural memory of the Mezen, they were supplanted to the periphery and replaced by the Soviet period values.

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  • EP ID EP684986
  • DOI 10.37482/issn2221-2698.2020.39.144
  • Views 326
  • Downloads 0

How To Cite

Natalia V. DRANNIKOVA (2020). Oral Stories about the Mezen Churches as a Subject of Interdisciplinary Research. Arctic and North, 39(39), -. https://europub.co.uk/articles/-A-684986