Moscow and Muscovites: Identity Problems


A true Muscovite is traditionally seen as a third-generation resident of Moscow. The Russian Statistics Agency estimates the city’s population at 12 million people (some unofficial estimates claim the city may have up to 20 million residents). Social scientists believe that true Muscovites meeting the third-generation criterion are no more than 2% of the total. Inevitably, this transforms the whole idea of a “Muscovite,” but how does it change? Who is aMuscovite these days? How would someone identify a Muscovite and how would a Muscovite identify him- or herself?

On the other hand, Moscow itself no longer fits any of the traditional definitions of city space. The Russian capital is no longer the place of actualization of an urban community as urban. Historically, cities began from a market square, a temple and an agora, a gathering place for public debates and discussions of communal living in all its manifestations, of living as a society and a state. It is no longer the case in Moscow. What should the new identity of Moscow be?
Evgenia Pishchikova, Kirill Asse, Yuri Saprykin and others will discuss these questions at a round table.


– Evgenia Pishchikova (moderator), journalist, writer
– Kirill Asse, architect
– Ekaterina Karsanova-Scherga, journalist
– Yuri Saprykin, journalist, Rambler-Afisha editorial director