Punk Shamanism, revolt and break-up of traditional linkage: The waves of cultural production in post-Soviet Kazakhstan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


This article analyses new waves of cultural production in the late Soviet and post-Soviet period. It focuses on contemporary artists’ self-perception and self-positioning in the new realities of the postsocialist cultural realm and national awakening discourses. Independent contemporary artists of the post-Soviet period form new artistic movements, such as Punk Shamanism in Kazakhstan, to produce alternative truth and authentic discourses on nation and its history. This production is juxtaposed to the production of state-sponsored artists and writers. The article focuses on this struggle for defining the nation and claiming power in the discursive realm. It contributes to further conceptualization of the power of contemporary artists and non-state-sponsored cultural elites to participate in the processes of alternative and powerful discourses on nation and national imagination that become successful domestically and abroad. Through the discussion and production of Punk Shamanism – a new wave of cultural production identified with the search for lost memory and cultural codes, the article demonstrates how this cultural struggle developed in post-1991 Kazakhstan.


External organisations
  • University of Cambridge
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Other Social Sciences
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)435-451
JournalEuropean Journal of Cultural Studies
Issue number4
Early online date2017 Jan 13
Publication statusPublished - 2018 Aug
Publication categoryResearch