After the collapse of the USSR, Russian culture was absorbed by the market and quickly lost the ideological and propaganda dimensions as those had been imposed by the Soviet regime. Instead, new trends developed exploring bourgeois lifestyles and new values emerged associated with mass consumption. At the beginning of Putin's rule, the regime was stimulating this process as part of general depolitization. However, in recent years (in particular after the annexation of Crimea), Russian state cultural politics changed to mobilize the depoliticized culture for the task of new imperialist and nationalist propaganda. The past and collective memory became a battleground. On the one hand, it provided an escape from the grim economic and political actuality. On the other hand, the past was de-historicized and transformed into a storage of heroic national myths, a tale of historical heritage for the propagandist to exploit. The course will focus on the deep and traumatic changes affecting Russian culture in recent years and on the changing role of culture in a new political landscape.