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The Invisibility of Race in Sociological Research on Contemporary Russia: A Decolonial Intervention

Yusupova, Marina



This essay provides a critical decolonial intervention into the prevalent state of racial exceptionalism in mainstream sociological research on contemporary Russia. Following critical race theory's understanding of race as relationally constituted and rooted in discourses of Europeanness, modernity, and civilization, the essay shows that race is highly prevalent but unacknowledged in sociological studies of Russia. It is argued that dismissing race as analytically irrelevant in Russia seriously limits the sociological ability to explain social inequalities, engage with current global challenges and inadvertently gives racism new legitimacy. Drawing on postcolonial and decolonial critiques of sociology as a form of knowledge production, the essay points towards some ways of decolonizing sociological research concerning the inequalities associated with race and ethnicity in Russia and overcoming racial exceptionalism.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date May 12, 2021
Online Publication Date Sep 6, 2021
Publication Date 2021
Deposit Date Jan 2, 2023
Publicly Available Date Jun 27, 2023
Journal Slavic Review
Print ISSN 0037-6779
Electronic ISSN 2325-7784
Publisher Association for Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 80
Issue 2
Pages 224-233
Public URL


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