The sentiments of the population in Vladimir Region during the Great Patriotic War

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Abstract

The article examines the mood of home front workers during the Great Patriotic War based on the materials of Vladimir region, a region that had its own specific features. The author draws attention to the change in the rear position of this territorial unit during the war. The sources for the analysis were archival documents, some of which are introduced into scientific circulation for the first time, as well as documents of a memoir and epistolary nature. The study of Soviet propaganda during the indicated period draws attention to the transition from predominantly internationalist to patriotic slogans - a process that started at the very beginning of the war, with some precedents already in the last pre-war year. In the course of the study, the author identifies the ambiguous sentiments of the population in the rear in relation to the war and their living conditions. Attention is drawn to the fact that citizens had a negative perception of a number of actions of the authorities in the initial period of the war. The article tells the difficult situation in the rear during the battle for Moscow, a victory which to a large extent caused a turn in the mood of the majority of the population. An analysis of the letters of front-line soldiers and home front workers clearly reveals the fatalism of most of them, and their submissive adherence to their prescribed fate. At the same time, their letters show the hope for a quick victory over Nazism and the belief that their closest descendants would be able to build a bright future. Despite the predominantly patriotic statements, the example of the Vladimir region shows a critical attitude towards the Soviet government, not only on regional but also on central level. Still, one cannot but confirm that Soviet propaganda was very successful in consolidating the people during the war, which was of course facilitated by the policy of Nazi Germany both at the front and in the temporarily occupied territories.

About the authors

Ilya S. Tryakhov

Vladimir State University named after Alexander and Nikolay Stoletovs

Author for correspondence.
Email: ilja.tryahoff@yandex.ru

Ph.D. in History, Associate Professor of the Russian History Department

87, Gorkii St., Vladimir, 600000, Russia

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Copyright (c) 2021 Tryakhov I.S.

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