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

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

Published
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>30/09/2021
<mark>Journal</mark>Slavic Review
Issue number2
Volume80
Number of pages10
Pages (from-to)224-233
Publication StatusPublished
Early online date6/09/21
<mark>Original language</mark>English

Abstract

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.