Border Seminar 2022: “We Must Check for Both Pessimism and Illusions in Our Perception of Russia”,

[…] In a crowded room at the Barents House, seven experts on Russia give lectures on how different aspects of our great neighboring country in the North can be understood.

Among them is Julie Wilhelmsen, Senior Researcher at the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs (NUPI). The topic for her contribution was navigating between pessimism and illusion in our knowledge of Russia under Putin.

”Never before has it been as difficult and as important to assess Russia,” says Wilhelmsen at the beginning of her lecture.

Among other things, she points out that present-day research on Russia is being politicized in the wake of the Ukraine war, and that the researchers are struggling to maintain a multidimensional perspective.

”Us researchers are forced down from the bird’s eye perspective and to our [western, editorial note] side. Ukraine is exposed to an unjust and cruel war of aggression that breaks international law. We must stand together against this attack. At the same time, we must check our judgment of Russia for both pessimism and illusions,” says the NUPI researcher. Läs artikel