Lilita Zalkalns: "Ideologies of Non-Postal Exile Latvian stamps"


Latvian émigré institutions (the Veterans' Association Daugavas Vanagi, General Goppers Fond Inc., The Rainis and Aspazija Foundation, and others) regularly issued stamps without face value that were purchased by compatriots through voluntary contributions.

Typical stamps could be either anti‐Soviet, for example, one depicting the slogan "Russia, get out of the Baltic States!" against the background of a bear with a hammer and sickle tattoo, slobbering and pawing over a map of the three Baltic States or "non-political", for example, those commemorating prominent cultural personalities.

It is estimated that between 1945 and 1991, hundreds of such stamps without face value were issued.

This presentation will analyze the stamps (in cross-section) and their context, as well as provide an overview of the stamp-issuing organizations. I intend to answer, among others, the following questions: What ideological issues were taken up in the stamps, if any? Were the stamps mainly a reflection of their organizations? Were there other motivators? Were the stated and/or implied goals achieved?

About Lilita Zalkalns:

I have been working at the Baltic section for almost 30 years, mainly as teacher and administrator. Received a PhD in Baltic Studies in 2014. My research interests range from diaspora studies, Cold War propaganda and gender issues to heritage language teaching and pedagogy.