Martor No. 26 / Year 2021

Recalling Socialism through Clubbing Posters: A Visual Analysis of Grassroots Alternative Memory Practices 

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Alexandra BARDAN 

Faculty of Journalism and Communication Studies, University of Bucharest, Romania 

Pages: 74-92


Collective memory; alternative memory practices; communist symbols; commodification of nostalgia; visual rhetoric. 


This article explores a particular marketing trend operating online during the 2010s and consisting of promoting clubbing parties using communist-style posters. The first part of the paper is dedicated to the theoretical framework and approaches the study of the posters also as an alternative memory practice that digitally marked the online landscape of leisure promotion, participating in the making of a nostalgia economy. A socio-semiotic analysis is used for a body of 118 communist themed clubbing advertisements posted online between 2009 and 2019, where content analysis provided data that narrowed the duration of the aforementioned marketing practices to a time span of six years. Content analysis also yielded an overview of the most used visual patterns, while the examination of the production techniques showed that most of the posters displayed extensive digital alteration of the ideological insignia, consistent with the conversion of political icons into kitsch practiced elsewhere in Eastern Europe. These findings are put in perspective within the context of a generational change, while the posters could be the basis for future research under the framework of collective and cultural memory. 

How to cite this article:

Bardan, Alexandra. 2021. “Recalling Socialism through Clubbing Posters: A Visual Analysis of Grassroots Alternative Memory Practices.” Martor 26: 74-92. 

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