Victims and Survivors of Karelia (Journal of Finnish Studies)

9780120665167: Victims and Survivors of Karelia (Journal of Finnish Studies)
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In this guest-edited special double issue of the Journal of Finnish Studies, Markku Kangaspuro and Samira Saramo have compiled a captivating collection of articles. Their topic is one that continues to intrigue and trouble many people: the fate of North American Finns who followed the call of Stalin in search of a better, more fulfilling life, a life that would fit their socialist beliefs and rescue them from the woes of the Great Depression. This issue is a tribute to the victims and survivors of Soviet Karelia, those workers who gave their best for a dream of paradise-a paradise that turned out more closely to resemble an inferno. The authors draw upon previously untapped sources and seek to diversify the picture of the so-called "Karelian Fever." From both top-down and bottom-up perspectives, the authors discuss the circumstances that created this phenomenon in Canada and the United States as well as in the USSR. The articles focus on individual and collective motives for recruitment and migration and do so with a wide range of research materials and with open minds. Together, the authors reveal North American Finns both as individuals and collective agents. As well, the contributors demonstrate the various motives of the state-level actors, and how their intentions could be contradictory and the results unintended. The fate of the Soviet Karelian immigrants and the organizations that recruited them make clear that powers greater than those immigrants and organizations took control of them and dictated their place in history as part of one of the greatest human tragedies of the twentieth century.

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