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The ‘Khazar’-‘Varangian’ Dialogue in Dmitry Bykov’s ZhD: Some Psychoanalytical Observations

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Chapter Summary

Dmitry Bykov's ZhD is an alternative history novel, published in Moscowin 2006. It took Dmitry Bykov ten years to complete. ZhD claims that 'any interpretation of history is acceptable because 'no one knows what really happened' and 'all the sources have been falsified to some degree'. Russian history is depicted in ZhD as an on-going struggle between two ethnic entities, the 'Varangians' and the 'Khazars'. 'Khazars' had allegedly conquered Russia in VI century AD, while 'Varangians' came to replace them approximately four hundred years later. The novel's main action takes place in the near future, when a 'Khazar' state called the 'Great Khaganate' goes to war with Russia and wages battles on its territory intending to win it back from the 'Varangians'. 'Khazars' support a 'horizontal' approach, but use the concepts of market and freedom to destroy and enslave others too, so the end result is always the same.

Keywords: 'Great Khaganate'; 'Khazars'; 'Varangians'; Dmitry Bykov; Moscowin; Russian history; Zhd



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