During the summer of 2019, Russia saw the largest protests since those on Bolotnaya Square in 2011, before Vladimir Putin’s reelection as president. Within the last few years, the Kremlin has faced a rise in opposition, and this opposition is not only coming from political parties or journalists—it is coming from rappers. Part of one of the most popular music genres in Russia today, rap artists are more frequently releasing political songs, videos, and even entire albums. Some of most notable artists associated with activism include Noize MC, Face, and Oxxxymiron. Rappers are attending protests, posting on their social media about civil activism, and encouraging their large fanbases to be politically active. As a result of their dissidence, however, rappers are included with the slew of artists, politicians, and journalists who are battling state censorship. Rappers who have spoken against the state are not played on the radio, rarely seen on television, and have concerts cancelled last minute. These artists are battling this censorship, a task that is easier thanks to the internet and social media platforms, such as Instagram and YouTube. Censorship of the arts is also drawing attention from the international community, especially after the arrest of Husky following a cancelled concert in 2018. This project, thus, will argue that rap is a form of political protest in Russia. It will examine the ways in which popular culture operates as a form of protest and what role cultural protest plays in Russia, looking from broader events to a thorough analysis of Noize MC’s “Everything’s as It Should Be.”


Pozefsky, Peter

Second Advisor

Filimonova, Tatiana


Global and International Studies; Russian Studies


International and Area Studies | Language Interpretation and Translation | Slavic Languages and Societies | Soviet and Post-Soviet Studies


Rap, hip hop, Russia, subculture, nonviolent protest, post-Soviet, youth movements Russia, Noize MC, Everything's as It Should Be

Publication Date


Degree Granted

Bachelor of Arts

Document Type

Senior Independent Study Thesis



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