Rootless cosmopolitan was a pejorative label used in the Soviet Union during and after World War II. The term cosmopolitan has many meanings, but in the Soviet contest this referred to intellectuals who were accused of expressing pro-Western feelings and lack of patriotism. The term "rootless cosmopolitan" referred to Jewish intellectuals thus accused.
The term was originally coined by the Russian nineteenth-century literary critic Vissarion Belinsky, to describe writers who lacked national character.
- Figes, Orlando (2007). The Whisperers: Private Life in Stalin's Russia. New York City: Metropolitan Books, 494. ISBN 0-8050-7461-9.