A1 Journal article – refereed
‘Long live the friendship between the Soviet Union and Finland!’ Irony, nostalgia, and melodrama in Finnish historical television drama and documentary series

List of Authors: Pajala Mari
Publisher: Sage Publications Ltd.
Publication year: 2017
Journal: European Journal of Cultural Studies
Volume number: 20
Issue number: 3
eISSN: 1460-3551


In critical studies on historical television programmes, the affective qualities of televisual memory have been discussed mainly in terms of nostalgia. This article argues that conceptualizing the affective modes of relating to the past in more varied ways can help us to better understand the politics of memory on television. As a case study, the article analyses Finnish Broadcasting Company Yleisradio’s historical drama and documentary series that deal with the relationship between Finland and the Soviet Union. The article identifies three affective modes in the programmes: irony, nostalgia and melodrama. Each of these modes offers different possibilities for critiquing, understanding and justifying the past. By studying televisual memories of the Soviet Union in a non-socialist country with important political, economic and cultural ties with the socialist bloc, the article moreover questions a clear East–West binary in studies on post-socialist memory.

Internal Authors/Editors

Downloadable publication

This is an electronic reprint of the original article.
This reprint may differ from the original in pagination and typographic detail. Please cite the original version.

Last updated on 2019-29-01 at 11:16