Svetlana Borodina

Grant Type

Dissertation Fieldwork Grant

Institutional Affiliation

Rice U.

Grant number

Gr. 9258

Approve Date

April 11, 2016

Project Title

Borodina, Svetlana, Rice U., Houston, TX - To aid research on 'Governing Productive (Dis)Abilities: The Inkluzivnyi Work Regime and Moral Citizenship in Russia,' supervised by Dr. James D. Faubion

Preliminary abstract: The focus of this research is the ongoing attempts by Russian policy makers and corporate managers to institute an inkluzivnyi (inclusive, singular) work regime. In contrast to the previous policies of disability marginalization and isolation (McCagg and Siegelbaum 1989; Phillips 2010), this initiative has been construed as a way of building an integrative, more just and moral society. The inkluzivnyi work regime recruits disabled and nondisabled employees to labor together in shared environments. A growing number of entrepreneurially-minded people with disabilities and disability NGOs have expressed support for this initiative. Yet it remains unclear if this work regime indeed produces better rehabilitated disabled subjects and more moral citizens, in general. Through participant observation and interviews in the regional Ministry of Social Policy and disability inclusive firms, I will investigate what this regime is actually productive of. Particularly, I will examine (1) what kinds of persons inkluzivnyie (inclusive, plural) workplaces invite and exclude, (2) how this initiative changes and challenges work cultures, and finally, (3) what possibilities and shortcomings it offers to the governors. In order to generate an ethnographic understanding of how the crafting and implementation of this initiative affects disabled and nondisabled subjects, I will conduct twelve months of fieldwork in Yekaterinburg, Russia, a regional administration center with a vibrant disability scene. In bringing this context into dialogue with anthropological scholarship on governance, disability, care, ethics, and work, I will ultimately generate insights about how a neoliberalizing state governs the productive (dis)ability as a technique to produce moral citizens.