The European Studies Council presents
Jogilė Ulinskaitė, Spring 2022 Joseph P. Kazickas Associate Research Scholar, Yale Baltic Studies Program:
“Narratives of Endurance and Loss in the Memory of Post-Communist Transformation in Lithuania.”
The post-communist transformation in Lithuania was a complex process. For many, the independence movement and the collapse of communism (1988-1991) generated feelings of enthusiasm, excitement, and euphoria. However, the transformation also included a radical change and a breakdown of the accustomed life. The change was rapid, systemic, deep, and fundamental, followed by a long-lasting adaptation and redefinition of personal, social, and political identities. In her presentation Dr. Ulinskaitė moves away from a dichotomous understanding of the consequences of transformation (enthusiasm vs. disappointment). Instead, she shows that as people talk about their experiences of change and continuity in the post-communist transformation, complex and multifaceted emotional narratives are unveiled.
Jogilė Ulinskaitė is Assistant Professor and Research Fellow at the Institute of International Relations and Political Science, Vilnius University. Her research focuses on populism and its links to emotional narratives about the past. In her Ph.D. thesis, completed in 2018 at Vilnius University, she combined content and discourse analysis to investigate whether and how populist understandings of political representation are compatible with party democracy. She has also been part of a research team that carried out several projects on the collective memory of Lithuania’s communist and post-communist past. Dr. Ulinskaitė’s work at Yale has centered on reconstructing the emotional narratives of the post-communist transformation from oral history interviews about the Soviet and post-communist past in Lithuania.