"Novoe Proshloe/The New Past" (NP) is an interdisciplinary peer-reviewed scientific journal that publishes articles in Russian and English on history, cultural anthropology, philology and related fields of social and humanitarian knowledge, without regional and chronological limitations.
The journal is a platform for critical discussion of theoretical and empirical problems, as well as for analysis of modern methodological and methodical approaches to understanding the phenomenon of the past.
On the pages of the journal are published materials - articles, reviews and overviews, and sources, where the past is viewed as a subject of constant processing within the framework of academic and non-academic practices. Of particular interest, there are factors and mechanisms of "the past construction", as well as the context of this process. “The New Past” focuses on the social, cultural, cognitive, political and technological processes that influence the way individual and group consciousness reflex the past. The analysis of professional and non-professional historical consciousness in this sense is of equal value.
Although the epistemological and empirical significance of historical consciousness has been repeatedly emphasized in humanitarian studies on individual and group identity, as well as cultural, political and social groups at different levels, there is still a significant gap in theoretical reflection on historical consciousness and historical memory. In this regard, more attention is paid to the methodological and theoretical issues of understanding the phenomenon of the past on the tranches of the journal.
We strive to be interesting to our readers, staying within the framework of academic discourse. Realizing the conventionality of disciplinary boundaries in Humanities, we use literary allusions in the subjects of issues as a way of raising the profile of academic problems. These literary allusions refer to timeless connection between history and literature as well as to permanent narrativisation of historical knowledge.
The Editorial Board accepts papers for publication in the following areas of research:
- Phenomenon of the past and identity;
- academic practices of representation of the past;
- mass historical representations in different epochs;
- symbols of the past and their role in the functioning of historical consciousness;
- historiographical schools and trends, and their characteristics;
- historical memory and historical oblivion, factors of their formation;
- politics of memory, tools and mechanisms for managing the past;
- collective trauma and its role in the reflection on the past;
- documents and archives, techniques of working with them;
- biographies and shaping of historical consciousness.
The journal publishes reviews and overviews devoted to various problems in Humanities. Copies of books for reviews are to be sent to the address:
Russian Federation, Rostov-on-Don, 344006
105/42 Bolshaya Sadovaya Street
The New Past Editorial Board
Institute of History and International Relations.
The frequency of the publication is four times a year in the form of thematic issues. The annual program for the next calendar year is published starting from the second issue of the current year.
Founder and publisher: Federal State Autonomous Educational Institution of Higher Education "Southern Federal University". Legal address of the publisher: 344006, Russia, Rostov region, Rostov-on-Don, Bolshaya Sadovaya street, 105/42, http://sfedu.ru.
«Warrior at the Crossroads» (3/2020). In this issue, we intend to continue the discussion initiated earlier (1/2017 – “Lost Illusions”, 3/2019 – “Roads We Take”) about the “bifurcation points”, “historical road forks” and the problem of choosing alternative paths of development. The focus is now shifted to the “Russian Middle Ages” – the epoch of Russian national history separated from subsequent eras by a grandiose cataclysm of the Troubles Times. That is why the title of A.A. Zimin’s book on the Muscovite Civil War in the second quarter of the 15th century has been taken as a key metaphor for the theme of this issue able to illustrate such turning points. Being far from sharing the author’s concept, we nevertheless see a certain accord between the narrative strategies of our journal and A.A. Zimin’s cycle of works, which were both classical academic monographs in terms of essence and literary works of nonfiction genre in terms of form. At the same time, the fate of one of the most controversial books by A.A. Zimin, which stimulated debates over historical alternatives without being accepted by the academic community, allows for historiographical perspective of the discussion. It might be worth reflecting on the fact that “bifurcation points” can be characteristic of our understanding of history as well as history itself.
«They Fought for Their Country» (4/2020). The issue continues the discussion of previously raised questions of war (3/2016 - “The War and The Peace”) in the context of the formation of memory of the past (1/2016 – “What to Recall”). The main specificity of the issue does not arise from the research of the events of military history per se, but from the research of its reflections in various forms of historical memory, public consciousness, everyday life, culture and language, as well as problems of its institutionalization and verification. We also invite you to discuss the anthropological features, demographic and psychological consequences of various wars and armed conflicts, the problems of people and societies coming out of war. Special attention is paid to the memory of the Great Patriotic / World War II, which is largely because of the influence that the war had on the entire subsequent development of the Soviet society and the world as a whole. Images of war in the post-Soviet space transform and take on new features because more and more war witnesses pass away. The title of the issue uses the name of the Mikhail Sholokhov’s novel, as he was one of the first to raise questions about the formation of the Soviet Soldier’s psychology and the difficulties soldiers had to endure along the way. The solution of these problems inevitably implies interdisciplinary approach and allows us to invite not only historians, but also demographers, political scientists, sociologists, ethnographers, anthropologists, linguists, folklorists and representatives of other disciplines to offer their views on the war and its reflections in memory.
«The Government Inspector» (1/2021). In this issue, we propose to continue the discussion that we started earlier about the features and patterns of development of the Russian Empire (2/2019 - “A Map of Homeland”). The authors are going to focus on the reports of governors (governor-generals, viceroys) of the Russian Empire and materials of senatorial audits. These clusters of documents contain factual and statistical material that is still largely unexplored by historians, that represent the Romanov Empire in all its diversity. In Russian historiography, certain traditions of studying these sources have developed. At the same time, some aspects of their content were not addressed. In particular, no attempts were made to compare them using examples of various macro-regions of Russia at the end of the 18th – 19th centuries. Governor reports and senatorial audits contain information on the forms and methods of control of regional administrations by the center, on communicational channels between the capital departments and governors, and on their competitive opposition. They provide an opportunity to trace the process of formation and evolution of the governance characteristics in the provinces and outskirts of the Russian Empire. These and other subjects are the focus of the issue. The name of the issue is an allusion to the famous work of N.V. Gogol and is a metaphor for the contradictory interactions between imperial institutions, filled with conflicts and mutual misunderstandings. On the other hand, it is also a metaphor for the revision of the established scientific ideas about the potential of the selected sources.
«I Have Come to Give You Freedom» (2/2021). The novel by V. Shukshin, the name of which gave the title to our issue, was devoted to the Razin's movement - either the anti-feudal “peasant war” or the “Cossack rebellion” - and his leader, Stepan Razin, either "a thief and a traitor ... and a murderer", or a "dashing ataman" whose feats were celebrated in the bandit songs. The Will, understood as active freedom, as the right to act in accordance with one's desires and aspirations, is one of the key concepts of the Russian worldview. However, active freedom is also one of the main intellectual and political fetishes in the history of humankind. We plan not to limit ourselves to the “rebel age” in Russian history and Stenka Razin’s comrades. The focus of our interest is the entire repertory of religious, intellectual and social movements, appealing to freedom as the main value - from the ancient "slave rebellions" to the countless contemporary "emancipations" and irredentist projects. Also, the issue is about the people who make up the human dimension of these movements - from ideologists and leaders to ordinary "inconspicuous" participants. In addition, of course, it is about the contexts - temporal, regional, and sociocultural - that determine originality and similarity of the events and make them a fact in the history of humanity.
«War of the Worlds» (3/2021). Herbert Wells' "War of the Worlds" was chosen as the literary allusion of the issue. We propose to abandon the established Soviet connotation of the war of the worlds as a confrontation between the capitalist and socialist camps and present it as a metaphor for the pivotal moment in the history of humanity, the clash of civilizations. Like Herbert Wells, who witnessed the destruction and disappearance of Victorian England, the world that we know is disappearing in front of our eyes, and humanity is on the verge of a “new normality,” which still requires reflection and interpretation. Within the framework of the issue, we expect to start a discussion about historically given vectors and global trends in international relations, special features of the decision-making process within the framework of coexistence of traditional and non-traditional actors, strategies and mechanisms of cooperative actions in the context of global uncertainty that the modern system of international relations is experiencing. The focus of the issue is the transformation of ideas about the "center" and "periphery" in international relations alongside the axes West-East and North-South, the behavior of actors in the new political "environments" and the digitalization of international relations in general. We also hope to discover the outlines of that “new normality” that could serve as a representation of the new system of relations.
«The Man. In the case?» (4/2021). The issue is devoted to the anthropological dimension of socialist and post-socialist societies. The questions what was a "Soviet man" and how the “socialist type of personality” is reproduced in the post-socialist era are continuing to interest generations of scientists. In the academic writings the idea that the ideological confrontation between the USSR and the countries of the West, especially during the Cold War, predetermined the worldview of a modern man was widespread. In this historiographic tradition, a person in a socialist and post-socialist society appears to be practically identical to the Chekhov's "man in the case" - a closed person who is wary of the outside world. At the same time such a narrow understanding of the socialist personality puts researchers of Russian history in a difficult position, because Soviet people - by citizenship, education and self-consciousness - were involved in a wide variety of forms of activities, not necessarily corresponding to the officially recognized features of the “socialist type of personality”, and have a lot in common with the modern type of personality. During the Cold War many Soviet people had a craving for fashion, Western pop and rock music, alternative scientific theories and eastern martial arts, abnormal sexual identities and practices, had a keen interest in international life and persistent adherence to the religious rituals. In this issue of the New Past, we invite researchers to discuss issues related to the formation of a socialist man and socialist society in the context of the Cold War, which include not only ideological and political confrontation, but also new forms of communication through the Iron Curtain and the emergence of the global knowledge society. We also expect a discussion about the "closeness" and "openness" of socialist societies, as well as the discussion about the place and role of “socialistic” in the modern world.
Each of special topics will cover no less 25% of the volume. Editorial Board hope on these topics as perspective for the journal progress. The journal enlargement is thought as mutual development together with our authors.
The main journal topics are Theme of the Issue, Theory and Methodology, Articles and Reports, Discussions, Sources, Reviews, Academic Life.