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Z Generation : Into the Heart of Russia's Fascist Youth


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Ian Garner

How did Vladimir Putin win Russians’ support for his genocidal war in Ukraine and why are so many of them willing to embrace fascism?

Ian Garner joins us for a launch of his new book Z Generation, a fascinating, bottom-up portrait of the fascist youth movements warping Russian society and politics—and the darker future awaiting the country if their hold cannot be broken.  

Wartime Russia is drowning in fascist symbols. Zealous patriots attack journalists, opposition activists, and anyone suspected of betraying the motherland.

Hordes of online trolls and sleek videos of angry young men urge citizens to join the cause. State television terrifies viewers with false tales of anti-Russian conspiracies and genocidal yearnings. Child soldiers proudly parade across Red Square.

This is Russia in the 2020s: a land of performative rage and nationalist untruth, where pretence and broken promises are a way of life, and an apocalyptic mindset is seizing tomorrow's Russians.

As compelling as it is chilling, Z Generation shows how Russia has ended up here, and where its young people may be headed: a fascist generation more violent and ideological than anything the country has seen before.

‘An unflinching and essential portrayal of the Putler Jugend with all its paradoxes and sadism.’ — Peter Pomerantsev, author of Nothing is True and Everything is Possible: Adventures in Modern Russia

‘If you thought Putin’s Russia was an ideology-free kleptocracy and most Russians are ashamed of or opposed to the invasion of Ukraine, read Ian Garner’s gripping historical-cultural analysis of the descent of a portion of Russia’s youth into fascist euphoria in support of their country’s illegal invasion of Ukraine.’ — Maria Popova

Our speaker: Ian Garner's research focuses on Soviet and Russian war propaganda. The author of Stalingrad Lives: Stories of Combat and Survival, he studied at the Universities of Bristol and Toronto, and at the St. Petersburg State Conservatory.

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