By Brigid O'Keeffe

As perceived icons of detached marginality, ailment, indolence, and parasitism, “Gypsies” threatened the Bolsheviks’ excellent of latest Soviet males and Women.  The early Soviet country feared that its Romani inhabitants suffered from a unprecedented and probably insurmountable cultural “backwardness,” and sought to sovietize Roma via various nation-building tasks. but as Brigid O’Keeffe exhibits during this booklet, Roma actively engaged with Bolshevik nationality rules, thereby assimilating Soviet tradition, social customs, and monetary relations.  Roma proved the first brokers within the refashioning of so-called “backwards Gypsies” into wakeful Soviet citizens.

New Soviet Gypsies presents a special background of Roma, an overwhelmingly understudied and misunderstood diasporic humans, by way of targeting their social and political lives within the early Soviet Union. O’Keeffe illustrates how Roma mobilized and played “Gypsiness” as a method of advancing themselves socially, culturally, and economically as Soviet electorate. Exploring the intersection among nationality, functionality, and self-fashioning, O’Keeffe indicates that Roma not just defy effortless typecasting, but in addition deserve research as brokers of history.

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New Soviet Gypsies: Nationality, Performance, and Selfhood in the Early Soviet Union by Brigid O'Keeffe


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