The Ancestor Syndrome
Since 1756 Germans lived on the Volga in Russia. Germans arrived to Russia by the call of Ekaterina II to develop agriculture. The peaceful life was disturbed by the 20th century — famine, revolution and repressions. In 1941, after the war began, all Volga Germans on Stalin’s orders were deported.
I was born in 1981 in the resettled family of Volga Germans.
In 1991 the law «Concerning the Rehabilitation of Victims of Political Repressions» came into force. I hadn’t lived in those hard days, when the state machine had gone over my family and distorted it completely. There was my great-grandfather's shooting, the famine, the cold, Gulag, hard labour, the deportation to Kazakhstan, forever lost home and many years of wandering.
I absorbed the tales of my family’s past. I was growing up with a fear and anxiety inside me and with a profound silence about problems and worries outside. The identity loss, anxious view of life, aloofness, a fear to speak out my mind, a fear to be ridiculed, the impossibility to find myself among my own people, to find my place in life and to gain confidence.
It’s my ancestor syndrome.
The Ancestor Syndrome (dummy), 2019