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From high camp to post-modern camp: queering post-Soviet pop music

Brock, Maria and Miazhevich, Galina 2021. From high camp to post-modern camp: queering post-Soviet pop music. European Journal of Cultural Studies 10.1177/13675494211021413

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This paper examines the post-Soviet transformations of Russian popular music culture (Estrada), arguing that its aesthetics can be analysed from the perspective of camp, by looking at two cult music performers bridging the Soviet and post-Soviet realm – Valery Leontiev and Filipp Kirkorov. The analysis is grounded in a close reading of the artists’ career trajectories, selected videos and – to a lesser extent – textual analysis of their lyrics and public statements. The paper argues that their performative personas are rooted in a particular version of camp with differing modalities of subversiveness – each responding both to their respective cultural and political climates, audience expectations, but also in accordance with their individual embodiments of (post)Soviet camp. Whilst Leontiev demonstrates a more earnest commitment to high drama, Kirkorov continues his ironic experimentation with transgression, ambiguity and excess, thereby participating in the queering of post-Soviet popular culture. The paper concludes that their appropriation of camp is strategic, as it responds to the temporal, national and global trends such as global gay culture and neo-camp in Russia.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Published Online
Status: In Press
Schools: Journalism, Media and Culture
Publisher: SAGE
ISSN: 1367-5494
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 14 May 2021
Date of Acceptance: 12 May 2021
Last Modified: 13 May 2022 13:27

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