Nordisk Østforum 2020-06-25T14:29:57+02:00 Tidsskriftet Nordisk Østforum Open Journal Systems <p>Nordisk Østforum (NØF) dekker politisk, økonomisk og kulturell utvikling i Russland, Balkan, Øst-Europa og det postsovjetiske området. Tidsskriftet inviterer forskere til å ta del i den nordiske debatten om utviklingen i et av våre viktigste nærområder.</p> Öst är öst och väst är väst? En jämförande studie av partisystemens stabilitet i Europa 2008–2019 2020-04-02T12:38:27+02:00 Andreas Bågenholm <p><strong>Abstract: </strong><strong>East is East and West is West? Comparing Party System Stability in Europe 2008–2019</strong><br>This article compares trends in party system stability in Central/ Eastern Europe (CEE) and Western Europe, to see if recent studies indicating that the two regions have become more similar hold when the results of outcomes of several post-financial-crisis elections are taken into consideration. Further, it enquires into the underlying causes of electoral volatility and whether they differ between the two regions. In all, 82 parliamentary elections in 25 EU countries 2008–2019 are analyzed as regards electoral volatility (Pedersen’s Index) and support for new parties (‘volatility type A’). The results show that, when the most likely confounding variables are controlled for, a significant difference between the two regions remains, but also that there is a converging trend on both indicators. Moreover, whereas electoral volatility in the West is driven by the level of corruption together with the effective number of parties, unemployment and economic growth as well as the number of effective parties are the main factors explaining the same phenomenon in CEE. There is also evidence that volatility in CEE, unlike in Western Europe, is also driven by a path-dependent logic, where previous volatility scores explain subsequent ones. That finding may have implications for the prospects of future party system stabilization.</p> <p style="margin: 0px; text-align: justify;">&nbsp;</p> 2020-03-25T07:27:47+01:00 Opphavsrett (c) 2020 Andreas Bågenholm Hvad blev der af »Øst«? – En introduktion og et postscriptum 2020-04-14T09:53:36+02:00 Rune Holmgaard Andersen <p><strong>Abstract: What happened to the ‘East’? An introduction and a postscript</strong><br>Is it still – if it has ever been – relevant to talk about the “East” as a special region? This article introduces, frames, and concludes on the Nordisk Østforum special theme series <em>What happened to the “East”?</em> It provides the theoretical foundation for the four empirical studies included in the special theme series. The article discusses the historical roots and general negative connotations surrounding the notion of “East” in both the “West” and the “East” as well as the recent revival of “Eastern” identities and their relations to the surge of illiberal currents on the global scene. Before outlining the findings of the four empirical studies, the article discusses the notion of region, offering a more dynamic concept than implied by the classical focus on geographical proximity. The article concludes by discussing the continued relevance of the “East” prefix in light of the findings of the four empirical studies. While there are manifest differences between “East” and “West” we need to caution ourselves against stereotypifications that disregard the variance and dynamics within and across the members of the two regions. The demarcation between the two are in no way fixed.</p> 2020-04-14T09:23:49+02:00 Opphavsrett (c) 2020 Rune Holmgaard Andersen Russia of Power 2020-01-09T09:36:53+01:00 Ingerid M. Opdahl <p><strong>Abstract in English: <br>Russia of Power<br></strong>Ingerid M. Opdahl reviews <em>Russia of Power</em>, a report by more than 40 Finnish researchers and experts on contemporary Russia from the perspective of security.</p> 2020-01-09T09:15:41+01:00 Opphavsrett (c) 2020 Ingerid M. Opdahl Close and Distant. Political Executive-Media Relations in Four Countries 2020-01-09T09:35:37+01:00 Elin Strand Larsen <p><strong>Abstract in English: <br>Close and Distant. Political Executive-Media Relations in Four Countries</strong><br>Elin Strand Larsen reviews <em>Close and Distant. Political Executive-Media Relations in Four Countries</em>. Edited by Karl Magnus Johansson and Gunnar Nygren, the book is based on a three-year long research project and analysis of the relationship between politicians, press secretaries and journalists in four countries – Finland, Lithuania, Poland and Sweden. By conducting thorough, well-coordinated research and numerous research interviews (20–25 from each country), the research group has studied the interplay between government and media in the period 2014–2017. The anthology contains four country-specific chapters, as well as the following cross-national themes: government communication, social media, source-journalist relationships, mediatisation and political communication cultures.</p> 2020-01-09T09:17:34+01:00 Opphavsrett (c) 2020 Elin Strand Larsen Vory: den ryska supermaffian 2020-01-22T10:41:54+01:00 Mi Lennhag <p><strong>Abstract in English: <br>Review of <em>Vory: den ryska supermaffian<br></em></strong>Mi Lennhag reviews&nbsp;<em>V</em><em>ory: den ryska supermaffian </em>(<em>The Vory: Russia’s Super Mafia)</em> by Mark Galeotti (translated by Manne Svensson). The book examines organized crime in the Soviet Union and in post-Soviet Russia. Historical, political and cultural contexts help explaining the Russian mafia and the phenomenon <em>vory</em>. Galeotti pictures a Russian society where politics and organized crime remain closely linked.</p> 2020-01-22T09:28:40+01:00 Opphavsrett (c) 2020 Mi Lennhag Den røde underverden. Hemmelig kommunistisk virksomhed i Skandinavien mellem to verdenskrige 2020-01-22T10:42:47+01:00 Mette Skak <p><strong>Abstract in English: <br>The Red Underworld. Secret Communist Activity in Scandinavia between the World Wars<br></strong>Mette Skak reviews <em>The Red Underworld. Secret Communist Activity in Scandinavia between the World Wars</em> (original title <em>Den røde underverden. </em><em>Hemmelig kommunistisk virksomhed i Skandinavien mellem to verdenskrige</em>).</p> 2020-01-22T09:29:06+01:00 Opphavsrett (c) 2020 Mette Skak Sjamanen i stjerneregn: Ein reise til Asias sentrum 2020-02-18T09:16:45+01:00 Ingvar Svanberg <p><strong>Abstract in English: <br>The Shaman in a Rain of Stars: A Journey to the Centre of Asia</strong><br>Ingvar Svanberg reviews 'The Shaman in a Rain of Stars: A Journey to the Centre of Asia' by B. MiRee Abrahamsen. The book is a travelogue from the Russian republics of Khakassia and Tuva in Siberia. Abrahamsen introduces the readers to the history of these regions as well as the everyday life of people living there in 2018, and gives a personal description of shamanism as a religious phenomenon.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> 2020-01-22T09:29:26+01:00 Opphavsrett (c) 2020 Ingvar Svanberg Ryssland och historiens början 2020-03-23T12:20:17+01:00 Geir Flikke <p><strong>Abstract in English:</strong><br><strong>Russia and the Beginning of History</strong><br>Morgan Olofsson's <em>Russia and the Beginning of History</em> consists of several interviews that the former Swedish news correspondent made with people he met in the 1990s. The purpose, he says, is to see how people have fared in the timespan from the 1990s to 2018, but also, more ambitiously, to sustain a dialogue between people on topics like the gradual dissemination of authoritarian political systems. Olofsson argues that we "need to learn from history" to protect democratic values; that is, values that connect people. The structure of the book is reminiscent of Mikhail Zygar's <em>All the Kremlin's Men</em> (2016), short annotated chapters, with introductions. The interviews stand out as sharp and perceptive, but the structure and editing of the book leaves more to be desired.&nbsp;</p> 2020-03-19T11:08:49+01:00 Opphavsrett (c) 2020 Geir Flikke Contemporary Russian Conservativism: Problems, Paradoxes, and Perspectives 2020-03-19T14:15:49+01:00 Pål Kolstø <p><em>Contemporary Russian Conservativism</em> consists of 15 chapters by diverse hands but nevertheless has a high degree of coherence. The volume rightly highlights the role of the Russian Orthodox Church in the promotion of conservativism and “traditional values”. Many of the participants in the media debates around this issue no doubt hold sincere views while, as the editors argue, Putin and his entourage most likely adopted this new ideology for pragmatic reasons.</p> 2020-03-19T11:09:08+01:00 Opphavsrett (c) 2020 Pål Kolstø In the North, the East and West Meet. Festschrift for Jens Petter Nielsen 2020-03-19T11:20:25+01:00 Ingmar Oldberg <p>Ingmar Oldberg reviews <em>In the North, the East and West Meet. Festschrift for Jens Petter Nielsen,</em> edited by Kari Aga Myklebost and Stian Bones. This book contains 26 articles in Norwegian, English and Russian, starting with a good presentation of Professor Nielsen’s life and career. In keeping with his interests, the well annotated articles cover several themes; the centenary of the Russian revolution, Norwegian-Russian relations since the Middle Ages, especially in the High North, Russian arts, and scientific cooperation. The book is beautifully illustrated.</p> 2020-03-19T11:09:24+01:00 Opphavsrett (c) 2020 Ingmar Oldberg Fragmenter av fortid – Historiens rolle i russisk samtidslitteratur 2020-03-19T11:22:11+01:00 Jon Reinhardt-Larsen <p><strong>Abstract in English:</strong><br><strong>Fragments of the Past – History's Role in Russian Contemporary Literature </strong><em><br></em><em>Fragmenter av fortid – Historiens rolle i russisk samtidslitteratur</em> is a thorough analysis of the utilisation of history in post-Soviet Russian literature. The author argues that literature functions as a 'place of reflection' that can produce vital alternatives to the monolithic understanding of history promoted by the authorities, and as such, literature has regained its traditional influence in Russian society following the dissolution of the Soviet Union.</p> 2020-03-19T11:09:46+01:00 Opphavsrett (c) 2020 Jon Reinhardt-Larsen Narrating Otherness in Poland and Sweden – European Heritage as a Discourse of Inclusion and Exclusion 2020-05-06T08:16:21+02:00 Jørn Holm-Hansen <p><strong>Abstract: Narrating Otherness in Poland and Sweden – European Heritage as a Discourse of Inclusion and Exclusion</strong><br>Jørn Holm-Hansen reviews the anthology <em>Narrating Otherness in Poland and Sweden – European Heritage as a Discourse of Inclusion and Exclusion</em> edited by Krzysztof Kowalski, Łucja Piekarska-Duraj &amp; Barbara Törnquist-Plewa.</p> 2020-05-06T08:03:06+02:00 Opphavsrett (c) 2020 Jørn Holm-Hansen Breve fra Rusland. Sandheden om det russiske despoti 2020-05-06T08:17:43+02:00 Søren Riishøj <p><strong>Abstract: </strong><strong>Letters from Russia. The Truth about Despotic Russia</strong><br>Søren Riishøj reviews <em>Letters from Russia. The Truth about Despotic Russia</em>, a translation into Danish of the French 19th-century artistocrat, Marquis de Custine’s published collection of letters with impressions from Russia.</p> 2020-05-06T08:03:27+02:00 Opphavsrett (c) 2020 Søren Riishøj 1989 – Året som endret Europa 2020-05-06T08:19:08+02:00 Thomas Lundén <p><strong>Abstract: </strong><strong>1989 – The Year That Transformed Europe<br></strong>Thomas Lundén (Centrum för Östersjö- och Östeuropaforskning (CBEES), Södertörns högskola) reviews&nbsp;<em>1989 – Året som endret Europa</em>&nbsp;(1989 – The Year That Transformed Europe) written by Per Anders Madsen.</p> 2020-05-06T08:03:54+02:00 Opphavsrett (c) 2020 Thomas Lundén Det sovande landet. Sibirien i rysk historia, kultur och geografi 2020-05-20T14:04:49+02:00 Torben Heuer <p><strong>Abstract: </strong><strong>The Sleeping Country. Siberia in Russian History, Culture and Geography<br></strong>Torben Heuer (lecturer in Russian language and culture, formerly affiliated with Aarhus University) reviews&nbsp;<em>Det sovande landet. Sibirien i rysk historia, kultur och geografi </em>(The Sleeping Country. Siberia in Russian History, Culture and Geography) written by Margareta Attius Sohlman.</p> 2020-05-20T13:35:20+02:00 Opphavsrett (c) 2020 Torben Heuer Religion, Expression, and Patriotism in Russia: Essays on Post-Soviet Society and the State 2020-05-20T14:06:36+02:00 Yuliya Yurchuk <p><strong>Abstract: </strong><strong>Religion, Expression, and Patriotism in Russia: </strong><strong>Essays on Post-Soviet Society and the State<br></strong>Yuliya Yurchuk (postdoctoral researcher, Historical and Contemporary Studies, Södertörn University) reviews <em>Religion, Expression, and Patriotism in Russia: Essays on Post-Soviet Society and the State,</em> edited by Sanna Turoma, Kaarina Aitamurto and Slobodanka Vladiv-Glover.</p> 2020-05-20T13:37:04+02:00 Opphavsrett (c) 2020 Yuliya Yurchuk Polen. Aske og diamanter 2020-05-20T14:05:46+02:00 Barbara Törnquist-Plewa <p><strong>Abstract: </strong><strong>Poland: Ashes and Diamonds<em><br></em></strong><em>Poland: Ashes and Diamonds</em> is a book about contemporary Poland, written by Ingrid Brekke, a knowledgeable Norwegian journalist. Its great merit is that it explains the contemporary political development in Poland through the prism of the country’s history. The book is not devoid of some misinterpretations or minor errors; however, this is more than well compensated by its engaging style and skillful construction. The book is informative, easy-to-read and has a clear potential to increase the readers’ understanding of Polish society and ignite their interest in the country.</p> 2020-05-20T13:36:38+02:00 Opphavsrett (c) 2020 Barbara Törnquist-Plewa Political Culture in the Baltic States. Between National and European Integration 2020-06-23T11:44:08+02:00 Egle Kesylyte-Alliks <p><strong>Abstract: </strong><strong>Political Culture in the Baltic States. Between National and European Integration<br></strong>Eglė Kesylytė-Alliks (researcher at Institute of International Relations and Political Science, Vilnius University) reviews <em>Political Culture in the Baltic States. Between National and European Integration </em>written by Kjetil Duvold, Sten Berglund and Joakim Ekman.</p> 2020-06-23T10:00:30+02:00 Opphavsrett (c) 2020 Egle Kesylyte-Alliks Russia’s Crony Capitalism. The Path from Market Economy to Kleptocracy 2020-06-24T11:24:16+02:00 Erik Andermo <p><strong>Abstract:&nbsp; Russia’s Crony Capitalism. The Path from Market Economy to Kleptocracy<br></strong>Anders Åslund provides a systematic and thought-provoking account of how Russia under Putin has gone from a liberally oriented market economy to kleptocratic state capitalism. Much of the focus is on deinstitutionalization, which has undermined property rights and led to limitations of Russia’s growth potential. The narrative draws on a vast array of sources and Åslund’s unique personal experiences to provide a comprehensive picture of how Russia came to where it is today.</p> 2020-06-23T10:12:59+02:00 Opphavsrett (c) 2020 Erik Andermo Sverige – Polen. 1000 år av krig og kärlek 2020-06-24T11:30:04+02:00 Karl-Erik Frandsen <p><strong>Abstract: Sweden – Poland. 1000 Years of War and Love<br></strong>Karl-Erik Frandsen (The Saxo Institute, University of Copenhagen) reviews <em>Sverige – Polen. 1000 år av krig og kärlek</em> (Sweden – Poland. 1000 Years of War and Love) written by Herman Lindquist.</p> 2020-06-23T10:13:19+02:00 Opphavsrett (c) 2020 Karl-Erik Frandsen Russian Military Capability in a Ten-Year Perspective – 2019 2020-06-24T11:33:52+02:00 Una Hakvåg <p><strong>Abstract:</strong> <strong>Russian Military Capability in a Ten-Year Perspective – 2019</strong><em><br></em>Una Hakvåg (Norwegian Defence Research Establishment (FFI)) reviews <em>Russian Military Capability in a Ten-Year Perspective – 2019, an analysis of Russia’s Armed Forces and their fighting power</em>, edited by Fredrik Westerlund &amp; Susanne Oxenstierna.</p> 2020-06-23T10:13:46+02:00 Opphavsrett (c) 2020 Una Hakvåg Från ett kallt krig till ett annat 2020-06-25T14:29:57+02:00 Klaus Carsten Pedersen <p><strong>Abstract: From One Cold War to Another </strong><strong><br></strong>Klaus Carsten Pedersen (Det Udenrigspolitiske Selskab,) reviews&nbsp;<em>Från ett kallt krig till ett annat </em>(From One Cold War to Another) written by Thomas Bertelman.</p> 2020-06-23T10:14:16+02:00 Opphavsrett (c) 2020 Klaus Carsten Pedersen