Published on 25th April 2019 by

Why does Russia under Putin get more nationalistic? Why is nationalism in Russia a big topic? And what is modern Russia under Putin pursuing for a strategy? Dutch journalist and Russia expert try to find out who is pushing the forces behind Putin’s desire for expansion and why people in Russia are again embracing nationalism.

In this eight-part travel series, the Dutch journalist and author Jelle Brandt Corstius travels through Russia and visits the neighbor countries Latvia, Moldova, Ukraine, Belarus, and Kazakhstan. What image do the Russians have of their neighbors and vice versa? What are the relations between powerful Russia and the other former Soviet republics? And how do the countries around Russia treat their Russian inhabitants? A series about propaganda and identity.

Since Crimea is seized by Russia something has changed. The kindness and spontaneity are gone and the old mistrust of the West has come up again. Dutch journalist and author Jelle Brandt Corstius meet people on the street, in a shop where Putin T-shirts are sold, visits Siberian separatists, and meets Putin’s philosopher and advisor Aleksandr Dugin, who rewrote the idea of Eurasia.

For the first time since World War II, a European country invaded another. The Crimea was again part of Russia, as it should be. And for the first time since the fall of the Berlin Wall, they could be proud of something. A patriot law passed by the Duma is intended to make the Russians even more patriotic. The law comes into effect in schools, in the media and also in singing choirs. A conservative, traditional life is promoted. Brandt visits a military choir that performs patriotic songs and speaks to people who feel strengthened thanks to Putin.

Original title: Grensland: Beleefde mensen (2/8)
Director: Alexander Oey and Jelle Brandt Corstius
© VPRO September 2015

On VPRO broadcast you will find nonfiction videos with English subtitles, French subtitles and Spanish subtitles, such as documentaries, short interviews and documentary series.

This channel offers some of the best travel series from the Dutch broadcaster VPRO. Our series explore cultures from all over the world. VPRO storytellers have lived abroad for years with an open mind and endless curiosity, allowing them to become one with their new country. Thanks to these qualities, they are the perfect guides to let you experience a place and culture through the eyes of a local. Uncovering the soul of a country, through an intrinsic and honest connection, is what VPRO and its presenters do best.

So subscribe to our channel and we will be delighted to share our adventures with you!
more information at

Visit additional youtube channels bij VPRO broadcast:
VPRO Broadcast:
VPRO Metropolis:
VPRO Documentary:
VPRO World Stories:
VPRO Extra:
VPRO VG (world music):
VPRO 3voor12 (alternative music):
VPRO 3voor12 extra (music stories):

English, French and Spanish subtitles by Ericsson and co-funded by the European Union.


Add your comment

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.