The Regional Studies Movement in Soviet Lithuania

  • Vida Savoniakaitė Lithuanian Institute of History


This article is dedicated to the regional studies movement in Soviet Lithuania, primarily to ethnography, and argues that Lithuanian ethnographers conducted ethnographic research in different ways. The focus is on the Ramuva movement, founded in 1970 at Vilnius University and continuing until 1994. The activities of the Lithuanian regional studies movement were characterised by diverse education and ethnographic practices. I assert that the key to the success of Ramuva’s activity was a creative circumventing of Soviet ideology and practice. Through a discussion of theoretical issues and the results of fieldwork, I analyse the following questions: How did Marxism–Leninism change ethnography in Soviet Lithuania? What were the activities, methods and theory of regional research? Was Ramuva’s policy of knowledge production in opposition to the Soviet regime?
How to Cite
SAVONIAKAITĖ, Vida. The Regional Studies Movement in Soviet Lithuania. Journal of Ethnology and Folkloristics, [S.l.], v. 13, n. 2, p. 71–89, dec. 2019. ISSN 2228-0987. Available at: <>. Date accessed: 27 mar. 2023.
Articles (special issue)


history of anthropology, Soviet ethnography, belonging, Lithuanian nationalism, Baltic States