This article looks at the evolution of state agricultural policy in the context of a change in the general political line from the radical liberalism of the 1990s to state patronage and active support of the agricultural sector today. The privatization of land and the creation of private farms, the National Priority Project Development of the Agro-Industrial Complex, the adoption of Russia’s Food Security Doctrine, Russia’s accession to the WTO, and import substitution in response to Western sanctions are considered as stages of this policy. The author draws the conclusion that agricultural policy is inconsistent because of its excessive dependence on the political context, as determined by foreign policy collisions and the transformation of Russia’s internal development model.
This paper considers the problem of institutional development in the countries of Central and Eastern Europe. We analyze existing approaches to explaining the causes and factors of institutional development and seek to determine why there was no evidence of institutional convergence in European countries between 1990 and 2014. We look at the theoretical and methodological limitations of approaches to the analysis of institutional development characteristic of mainstream political science. The data we utilize comprise a wide range of quantitative variables which measure levels of institutional development, social trust and political capital. We also use our own Total Factor Productivity (TFP) estimates obtained through non-parametric methods using raw data. We analyze relationships between the variables using correlations, regression analysis and clustering. The results of statistical analysis reveal the mechanism through which TFP influences institutional development: we show that TFP is a necessary prerequisite for institutional transformation.
The concepts of morality, justice and good have always loomed large in the perception of economic science. In this article I attempt to reveal the regularities of moral criticism of economic science. The first section is devoted to the challenges facing contemporary economic science in the face of growing political influence of populist parties and movements. The second section looks at some factors contributing to a moral critique of economic science. The third section looks at the works of Hobbes, Adam Smith and Carlyle to reveal different approaches to the regulation of human behavior (by analyzing state coercion, the market and morality). An analysis of initial stages in the emergence of the conservative-romantic program of making the market mechanism subordinate to the ideals of justice and the common good highlights its fundamental problem: the need for enforcing compliance not only with legal, but also with moral norms.
Two closely related but essentially different political projects coexist in the post-Soviet states. One is designed to form a modern civic nation, the other, to consolidate the state institutions and national (nation-state) identity. The profound social differences and ethnocultural divides that emerge as these states promote the projects are putting on the agenda the need to find the means to consolidate the political community and focus the political discourse on problems of national and civic identity. This article presents comparative analyses of identity politics pursued by three post-Soviet republics-Kazakhstan, Armenia and Belarus-that differ markedly in terms of their ethnic and cultural composition, cultural and civilizational nature, and social and economic development resources. The research is based on in-depth interviews taken at research and expert centers in the three republics and is preceded by a critical overview of the local nation and nation-building concepts in the context of post-Soviet transformations. The conclusion is that their political practices prioritize state-building, with civic nation consolidation coming second. The article notes the steady divergence of the two projects' trajectories and often the opposite effects of using the potential of civic identity in political and intellectual discourses.
Different conceptual aspects of social unity and their interrelations are discussed. The semantic analysis of concepts depicting the social unity is given. The author distinguishes two types of social integration designated as "integration of society" and "integration with society. Besides, two other aspects of social integration, namely social cohesion (solidarity, consensus), on the one hand, and social regulation (rules, norms and values), on the other hand, as well as the interaction between them, are analyzed. According to author, the two forms of social integration, cohesion and adherence to abstract rules, are united by civil solidarity and civil society.
For the Russian Empire, the Catholic question was one of the most important domestic issues. It had to do with the building of relations with the western borderlands, primarily with Poland, in which the Catholic clergy was the driving force of the struggle for independence. In this context, in the second half of the 19th century, the Government of the Russian Empire considered maintaining a dialog with the Holy See as a way to preserve stability in the western borderlands of the Empire. For Alexander III, it was also a symbolic act illustrating Russia’s course for demonstrating continuity with the Christian emperors of the Roman Empire. This was meant to emphasize Russia’s special position in Europe. The image of Russia as a Christian empire committed to preserving traditional values was contrasted with the image of the liberal-egalitarian Western Europe, which was swept by revolutionary sentiments during this period. A unique historical source on the foreign policy of the Vatican in Eastern Europe in the second half of the 19th century and relations between the Holy See and Russia is the correspondence of Pope Leo XIII and Russian Emperor Alexander III. From 1881 to 1894, Pope Leo XIII sent about ten official letters and to each of them received an official response from the Emperor.
This article was born while I was working on my contribution to the Second Moscow International Conference on Opposition to Anti-Semitism, Racism and Xenophobia (October 29-30, 2018). The subject of the conference suggested greater emphasis on antisemitism among other outcrops of xenophobia. The article is based on the materials of the Levada Center 2018: reports on quantitative and qualitative studies of the state and dynamics of public opinion carried out on order of the Russian Jewish Congress to be quoted at the conference. What is even more important is the fact that I completely agree with the theoretical approaches used in the studies mentioned above and the definitions of xenophobia and anti-Semitism found in the reports of the Levada Center. At the same time, “forecasting trends and crises” (which is one of the three aims of the conference) might provide far from identical results; this depends on specific scientific approaches.
The article carries out macro-analysis that takes into account the impact of historically long stages or cycles of ethno-political processes on the dynamics of xenophobia. This analysis allows me to specify assessments based on sociological polls that cover comparatively short historical periods. I have arrived at a comprehensive interpretation of the results of sociological ranking of different ethnic phobias of Russians based on my analysis of the fundamental changes of ethnopolitical situation in Russia in the 1990s vs. the early 2000s. This article covers the ethnopolitical trends that cropped up in Russia and that are connected with the global processes we can observe here and now in the age of populism, to use one of popular definitions. I have also analyzed the essence of populism and its impact on the dynamics of xenophobia.
In the 2000s, the ethnopolitical situation in Russia started changing: the relationships between the ethnic territories and the center as well as ethnic separatism of the autochthonous colonized peoples and anti-Semitism were pushed aside by new problems created by migrants and other isolated ethnic minorities (Gypsies, for example). The rise of national-populism as one of the political movements in Russia and in other countries of the global North is explained by the changes in the basic characteristics of ethno-political situation and the resultant dynamics of xenophobia. I have relied on Russian examples to show that populism has many faces and that its impact on the dynamics of xenophobia is highly ambiguous. National-populism may be responsible for the growth of xenophobia while social populism might transform ethnic, racial and religious phobias into civic protests.
This aricle sums up the results of the study of the history of February revolution over tha past two decades and identifies future research challenges. It focuses on works of a coceptual character that can break new ground.
Review of the book I. FILATOVA, A. DAVIDSON. Russia and South Africa: Building Bridges, Moscow, The Publishing House of the State University-Higher School of Economics, 2012.
This article, based on the findings of a number of nationwide surveys conducted in 1999-2016, provides an analysis of the features and dynamics of a model of income stratification and its perception in Russian society. It is shown that the existing model of income stratification is marked by the dominance of middle strata and is fairly accurately reflected in popular consciousness judging from people’s perception of their position in society. The economic crisis that started in 2014 has not so far brought any serious changes to the model of income stratification or the perception by Russians of their place in society. As for the methodological as distinct from substantive conclusions, the article shows that the methods of building income stratification models for Russia should be looked for among relative methods used in developed countries and not absolute methods used in developing countries. Besides, considering regional disparities in terms of progress of modernization, in analyzing the social structure of Russian society it makes sense to use aggregate models of income stratification based on prior stratification of regional communities rather than models based on average nationwide indicators.
This article (one of a series of two articles) analyzes specific features of income stratification in Russia in comparison with other countries (Germany, Hungary, Bulgaria, Venezuela, Mexico, China) based on data from several nationwide surveys. It demonstrates that the income stratification model, which refers average per capita incomes at a specific household to the median income in a country, captures well the peculiarities involved in different models of society. It uses the data of an international comparative study, International Social Survey Programme (ISSP), to show that the Russian income stratification model is typical of Europe. At the same time, Russia is in-between Europe and the former Third World in terms of the extent of income inequalities.
The paradigm of multiculturalism, which had been widely rec- ognized in both academic and political circles in the last third of the 20th cen- tury, is in crisis and requires either rethinking or replacement by another model; this could combine the virtues of multiculturalism in supporting cul- tural diversity with the need to consolidate society. This article analyzes the advantages of a new paradigm of diversity management known as “intercul- turalism,” and provides an overview of intercultural policies and practices using Québec (a province in Canada) and the Council of Europe’s Intercul- tural Cities Program as examples. The article focuses primarily on the prospects of implementing the latter model in Russia in order to regulate eth- nic relations. It is argued that the “nationalities policy” conception applied in Russia would benefit from including of certain intercultural policies and prac- tices. The article outlines the limits of application of the concept of intercul- turalism in the Russian context, and identifies points of convergence of eth- nopolitical trends in Russia and other Global North countries. The authors rely on the results of the research project “New approaches and methods of regulation of ethnopolitical relations on the territory of the largest urban agglomerations of Russia,” and, particularly, on sociological data acquired in three Russian million-cities (Perm, Rostov-on-Don, and Ufa). These three cases are scrutinized with regard to practices of mutual accommodation deployed by different ethnic communities of urban populations.
The conflict between positive law and the idea of justice has always been the driver of transitional social orders. The Russian legal system as a historical phenomenon can only be understood in the context of the changing etymology of the concept of justice interpreted as a moral value, a legal phenomenon and a historical tradition. In keeping with this approach the author reconstructs the key characteristics inherent in the Russian legal tradition, the stages of their transformation during the course of modernization processes in the 18th-19th centuries, their wholesale destruction during the Soviet era and restoration in the post-Soviet period. Current debate on law and legal consciousness highlights the importance of some elements of the national legal tradition, but is incapable of reaffirming the conservative theory of "the rut" in Russian legal and political development. The author urges the need to develop a new concept of justice which would overcome legal dualism, bridge the gap between positive law and conservative mental stereotypes in order to implement the necessary liberal program of social and political reform.
This article examines the widespread practice of writing auto- biographies (forms of extended curricula vitae) by Soviet citizens. Special attention is given to the real social circumstances that fashioned the narrative structure and content of these life stories and the changes prompted by the political and ideological changes in the USSR. The article also examines strategies of composing autobiographies used by individual authors and draws parallels between the practice of writing these autobiographies and the practice of Christian confession. The article’s general conclusion is that these specific personal testimonies were addressed to the Soviet state and that their composition was part of the mechanism of creating “The New Soviet Man.”
The paper compares some basic aspects of the national identity of Russian and American students. It analyzes the students’ normative perceptions of their countries (a desired type of relations between the country and other nations^ attitudes towards the basic pricipals of social life) and the aspects of attitudes towards the country making it an object of national identity (country favoritism, an admissible level of criticism towards the country, and a specificity of duty fulllment to the country).
In 2015 the publishing house of St. Tikhon’s Orthodox Humanities University (PSTGU) brought out a collection of articles entitled The Invisible Church. Social Effects of the Parish Community in Russian Orthodoxy. This review looks at the book from the standpoint of an engaged reader whose research interests are outside sociology of religion. It considers the articles in each section one by one and articulates the questions that arise when reading them.
This article reconstructs and analyzes the philosophical hermeneutics of the political events of perestroika and regime change in Russia in 1991 as well as the political and economic atmosphere of the “wild 90s” proposed in the works of Russian philosopher Vladimir Bibikhin. Bibikhin’s attention to this theme owes as much to the traditional themes of Russian philosophy as to Heidegger’s thesis on historical factuality of thought. An examination of Bibikhin’s philosophy is impossible if these two sources are separated: it is only by mutually enriching each other that they contributed to the specificity of Bibikhin’s philosophical work linked with contemporary events. Characteristically, while recognizing the significance of historical context for Bibikhin’s thought different researchers often propose opposite interpretations of the philosopher’s reaction to current events. While Artemy Magun believes that Bibikhin fully shared the political enthusiasm of the pioneers of perestroika, Mikhail Bogatov discerns Bibikhin’s critical attitude to such enthusiasm. Looking at the whole body of Bibikhin’s texts it becomes clear that the reason for such a wide spread of possible interpretations was the complexity of Bibikhin’s attitude to the events referred to. On the one hand, the philosopher, while being highly critical of the scale of privatization, was also very sensitive to the change of ideology; on the other hand, Bibikhin recognized the significance of the events that happened and urged intellectuals to think about them deeply. Bibikhin believed that the only adequate response to the newly available freedom was philosophical work that links the interpretation of historical context to eternal themes of the original philosophy. At the same time, he stressed the significance of the Russian philosophical tradition for such interpretation and therefore perceived perestroika and the 1990s as a new chance for the evolution of Russian philosophy. His main intent was the search for non-ideological thinking.
The article attempts a phenomenological reconstruction of the “life world” of urbanites who buy houses in the countryside for recreation and who then begin to create a different, non-urban model of existence focused on the rural house. The empirical frame is based on the so-called “distant dachas.” These are houses bought by urbanites in the villages in the outlying rural areas located more than 500-600 km from the major cities - Moscow or St. Petersburg. This process is accompanied by the formation of a special “life world” (in terms of phenomenology) among urbanites with associated mental structures such as “home,” “hearth,” “possession,” “historical past,” “world of belongings of previous owners,” “abandonment in space,” “seclusion,” “significant other,” “archaica,” etc. In the Near North of Russia, specifically in the villages of the Kostroma Oblast, among the urbanites - summer residents and downshifters -- one can observe a special approach to organizing everyday life, involving the individualization of their living space with the priority of intangible values that fit into the context of preserving the socio-cultural space of what they see as the ideal Russian village.
N. Pokrovsky, Dr. Sc. (Sociology), Professor, National Research University “Higher School of Economics; Senior Research Fellow, Institute of Sociology, Federal Center of Theoretical and Applied Sociology of the Russian Academy of Sciences. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. U. Nikolaeva, Dr. Sc. (Economics), Associate Professor, Senior Research Fellow, Lomonosov Moscow State University. E-mail: email@example.com. J. Demidova, graduate student, History Department (Ethnology and Anthropology), Lomonosov Moscow State University. E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Abstract. The authoritarian regimes in post-Soviet states emerged and consolidated in an absence of strong traditions of civil society and the fact that the anticommunist revolution of 1991 in the Soviet Union was not pre- dated by a “revolution of values.” The democratic transit in the newly inde- pendent states failed and democratic changes were suspended, among other things, because the new ruling layers that had monopolized power and prop- erty in post-Soviet states never wanted continued market and democratic re- forms. In short, the authoritarian regimes, on the one hand, owe their stabil- ity to the power/property institution, the nomenklatura as the ruling stratum and the patronage state. On the other, authoritarianism in the post-Soviet space was kept within certain limits by power equilibrium between region- al elites and de-nomenklaturization of the political elite while an absence of political and social actors that need democratic transformations was and re- mains the highest barrier on the way toward such transformations.