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Russian Speakers in Post-Soviet LatviaDiscursive Identity Strategies$
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Ammon Cheskin

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780748697434

Published to Edinburgh Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.3366/edinburgh/9780748697434.001.0001

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Discourse, Memory, and Identity

Discourse, Memory, and Identity

(p.18) Chapter 2 Discourse, Memory, and Identity
Russian Speakers in Post-Soviet Latvia

Ammon Cheskin

Edinburgh University Press

This chapter sets out the central theoretical frameworks that form the basis of this study. The concept of discourse is firstly enumerated with an explanation of why this concept is potentially so fruitful for a study of Russian-speaking identities in contemporary Latvia. Specific attention is paid to the question of how and why discourses change over time and the implications of these changes. This section also highlights the link between memory and national identity formation. Drawing on the work of a number of memory scholars, it is argued that memories can form an important link between the past and the present and that memories can possess power to create strong group identities.Centrally important to this research is a discourse-historical approach to studying discourse. Consequently, this chapter provides a set of theoretical, conceptual, and methodological justifications for this approach. It is argued that contemporary discourses should not be studied in isolation. Instead they should be contextualised by analysis of their temporality and how they evolve through time.

Keywords:   Discourse, Memory, Identity, Temporality, Discourse-historical approach, Hegemony, National identity

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