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Title: The geopolitics of ethnic relations in Russia : ethnic Russian and non-ethnic Russian citizens in Stavropol’skii krai
Author: Foxall, Andrew David
ISNI:       0000 0004 2736 359X
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2012
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Ethnic relations are an important feature of contemporary Russia. This is especially true in the North Caucasus where ongoing insecurity combined with a depressed economy has led to growing Russian nationalism, xenophobia, and fears over immigration. In Stavropol’skii krai, the only ethnic Russian dominated territory in the North Caucasus Federal District, the situation is especially acute. In this thesis I investigate how the geopolitics of ethnic relations in Stavropol’skii krai, as part of the wider North Caucasus situation, impact on the everyday life of citizens in Stavropol’. I do this through employing an eclectic methodology, including both qualitative and quantitative techniques. Through four research papers, I explore how the built urban environment, through the politics of naming place (for example, street names and monuments), has become a space through which ethnic identity can be (re)produced and contested. I show how ethnic relations are (re)presented and performed in Stavropol’ through the Den’ kraya celebration, a performance that is based on a Soviet-era idealised framing of ethnic relations, and one which is open to challenge. I explore how in summer 2007 ethnic relations turned violent as ethnic Russian and non-ethnic Russian citizens rioted, and I attempt to explain the geopolitics surrounding this. Finally, I show how everyday ethnic relations have turned increasingly violent in Stavropol’ since 1991, drawing on reports from non-governmental organisations and independent researchers. I situate this research within the context of the changing ethnic geography of the krai since 1991. Together, this research represents a geopolitics of ethnic relations in Stavropol’skii krai.
Supervisor: Pallot, Judith Sponsor: Economic and Social Research Council
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Geography ; Russia and Eurasia ; Ethnic minorities and ethnicity ; Russia; North Caucasus; Ethnic Relations; Geopolitics