(Re)constructing Conflict and Dialogue in Soviet Estonia and Post-Soviet Estonia: on Multivocality in Understanding of History
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The article poses a question as to the circumstances of adaptation between the Soviet power and the individual in Estonia. Relying on Yuri Lotman’s theory of the semiosphere, particularly on his notion of the “text within the text” and Mikhail Bakhtin’s concept of dialogism, the question is posed as to the kind of “thinking device” the Soviet official language changed into in Estonia during the period of Soviet annexation. Two types of documents, Soviet court files and a post-Soviet life story are analysed comparatively to reveal the dynamics of the conflict from the standpoint of power on one side and the complexity of the individual experience from the other side. It is demonstrated that, from the point of view of an individual, the adaptation of the language of power is conditional and ambivalent, being linked to resistance, survival or the absence of alternative linguistic resources. On the other hand, it occurred that, being confronted with contesting voices, the language of power was not able to maintain its univocality in longer perspective.
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