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Rediscovery of the 'Reality' of Magic: The Revival of Magic in Post-Socialist Russia

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This paper focuses on the revival of magic in post-socialist Russia. In socialist times, atheistic propaganda that insisted religions and magic are unworthy of belief was widespread and scientific knowledge was widely promoted. Therefore a majority of people came to consider magic only a 'superstition'. However, after the collapse of the Soviet Union, a movement to revive magic began. During fieldwork in the years 2002–2006, the author heard from some people such narratives as, 'Before, because I was a member of the communist organisation, I never believed in magic at all. I believe in it now, though'. In this paper I discuss what kinds of discourse about the 'reality' of magic exist in contemporary Russian society and how they are tied to the memory of the atheistic policy.


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