Civil Society and the State Intertwined: The Case of Disability NGOs in Russia
This article examines state–civil society relationships in contemporary Russia. Its objective is to assess opportunity structures of Russian non-governmental organisations (NGOs) that are intertwined with the state. The article presents qualitative data from fieldwork in the Russian cities of Moscow, St Petersburg, Nizhniy Novgorod, and Perm in 2009 and 2010. The focus of NGOs in the field of disability was chosen because of their roles as social service providers and as advocates for the rights of the disabled. The findings indicate that despite the Soviet legacy of an occupying state, Russian NGOs widen their opportunities by maintaining close relationships with state structures. Thus, litigation strategies seem to be an effective instrument for fostering social change for the benefit of the disabled.
The article analyzes the partnership of government and institutions within social policy and public welfare. Models of social policy and types of welfare state are examined. A conclusion is made for indispensability of depicting effective and fair balance among public and state participants in regulating social needs substantiation, institutional enforcement of «rights and proxies» of social policy subjects.
Apart from the public sphere and the norms set by society, the private sphere plays an important role in the lives of the disabled, including the personal experience of disability at a micro level: in their families, everyday routines and romantic relationships. In this chapter, issues of family structure are considered using a narrative analysis of interviews with women who use wheelchairs. Various cultural, social, economic and political determinants effect the formation of certain types of family structure and attitudes towards family life. At the same time, they interrelate with biographical factors that reinforce or weaken the limits of freedom and private life. Using narrative analysis, I demonstrate what role family plays in constructing the identity of a person with a disability, and how family members act as coauthors of individual biographies. This can be seen in those dilemmas of family life associated with the feelings, sexuality and emotional stability at the micro-level of the life experience and identification of women with disabilities.
The article is devoted to analysis of concepts reputation and reputation management in conditions of modern Russian political reality. The author tries to determine positions of reputation communications in political sphere of Russia, which have a goal of social trust (base of strong civil society) development.
There are analyzed the encountered in the title kinds of exploitation, uncovered its social danger and given the criminal legal characteristics, pointed out the ways of counteraction in the article. The author substantiates the conclusions concerning the freedom from such kinds of exploitation and the measures of combating encroachments on this freedom. There is shown the significance of the civil society institutions for the relevant areas of penal policy.
"Facing Crises: Challenges and Opportunities Confronting the Third Sector and Civil Society" 9th International Conference of the International Society for Third Sector Research (ISTR) Istanbul, Turkey July 7-10, 2010
Several approaches to the concept of fatherhood present in Western sociological tradition are analyzed and compared: biological determinism, social constructivism and biosocial theory. The problematics of fatherhood and men’s parental practices is marginalized in modern Russian social research devoted to family and this fact makes the traditional inequality in family relations, when the father’s role is considered secondary compared to that of mother, even stronger. However, in Western critical men’s studies several stages can be outlined: the development of “sex roles” paradigm (biological determinism), the emergence of the hegemonic masculinity concept, inter-disciplinary stage (biosocial theory). According to the approach of biological determinism, the role of a father is that of the patriarch, he continues the family line and serves as a model for his ascendants. Social constructivism looks into man’s functions in the family from the point of view of masculine pressure and establishing hegemony over a woman and children. Biosocial theory aims to unite the biological determinacy of fatherhood with social, cultural and personal context. It is shown that these approaches are directly connected with the level of the society development, marriage and family perceptions, the level of egality of gender order.