Идея самодержавия (конец XIX – начало XX вв.)
This article is devoted to the concept of autocracy (“samoderzhavie”) in the version of the Russian intellectuals and the higher bureaucrats in the late XIX – early XXth century. The research is based on the great variety of historical sources – published and archival. It is stressed that the Slavophile conception of autocracy calls for dramatic changes of the political regime and the great institutional reforms. Actually it camouflaged the opposition intentions of the Russian rulers who could not be very frank in the declaring of their political view. It was a rhetoric of the mock loyalty. It meant the definitive rejection of the concept of the absolute monarchy that was an ideological core of the Russian statehood of that time. The followers of the Slavophile political vision criticized the institutions of Polizeistaat that – from their point of view – had no strong roots in the Russian life. That way they approached to the idea of the constitutional limitation of the tzar power. They supposed that the state could not be the only actor in the Russian history. They insisted on the necessity of the strict frames of its activity. The Slavophle rhetoric was widely spread in the Russian intellectual life – among the convinced the Slavophiles and either among those who could accept the Slavophile rhetoric to hide their constitutional way of thinking. It was not a secret for many higher bureaucrats of that time who did not accept the Slavophile point of view and who were too far from the Slavophle rhetoric. And the Russian emperors statements mainly were far from the Slavophile rhetoric, too. Although the canonic way of the understanding of autocracy belonged not to the tzars, but to the Slavophile thinkers who worked in the editorial offices of Moscow newspapers and magazines or in the Ministry offices in Saint-Petersburg. One more time it proves the political loneliness of the monarch power that could not expect any support even from the part of its officers – bureaucrats or courtiers.