RUSSIA XXI, 06.2017


Geopolitics and International Policy Issues 

Vladimir Degoev

The Caucasus in the XXth century: lessons and hints of history

The author focuses on the profound impact the turbulent XXth century had on the destinies of the Caucasus people. In some cases he also tries to cautiously approach the age-old question “what if” when it comes to nowadays developments in the South Caucasus, the former part of the Soviet Union. Whatever the answer, any scholar could feel free to ponder over the future of the Eurasian space in terms of either optimistic or pessimistic scenarios.

KEYWORDS: the Caucasus in the World Wars; Western plan to dismember Russia; Iran; Turkey; Cold War; Post-Soviet realities.

Russia in the World

Andrey Yegorov

Eurasianism as philosophical-political trend: appraisals given by the Russian emigration of the 1920s – 1930s 

The article discusses the debate the liberal, socialist and partly conservative circles of the Russian emigration 1920–30-ies about the Eurasian philosophical and political ideas. Based on the statements of Eurasianism such well-known figures of emigration as N.A.Berdyaev, L.P.Karsavin, F.A.Stepun, P.M.Bitsilli, P.N.Milyukov, V.V.Rudnev, and others. Analyze the key problems of the polemic: the ideological origins of Eurasianism, the ratio of Russian and European cultures, the historical construction and a political program of the Eurasians, etc. It is shown that wide circles of the emigration had not taken a position Eurasians: the underestimation of European culture, the allegations about her imminent death, the idea of building ideocratic state attempts to justify Bolshevism. To the merits of the Eurasians took trying to find a new ideological synthesis to awaken in the revolution of the Russian national consciousness. The conclusion provides the outcome of the controversy, summed up by A.S.Izgoev in 1932. He showed that the Eurasians tried to find a new base for the Russian national statehood, created the ideological Foundation for future Russian right-wing political groups.

KEYWORDS: Eurasianism; Russian emigration; public opinion; conservatism; liberalism; so-cialism; nationalism.

Pages of History

Vyacheslav Volkov

Russian worker on the eve of the revolution. Formation of the proletariat

of Russia in the second half of the 19th – early 20th centuries

The article discusses the features of the process of development of the Russian working class in the second half of XIX – early XX cent. The conclusion is that the workers of peasant origin remained in close ties with their villages and to the agricultural activities. They were tied to their rural communes and the householders. As a result, more than half of the industry was located outside towns, and the peasants leaving on earnings became the dominant type of workers. In the minds of the workers the traditional rural commune values were not superseded by the bourgeois ones and were not lost, but were transformed within the framework of new communities – labor collectives, taking a pronounced anti-bourgeois orientation. In the early twentieth century, with a decrease in the growth rate of the total number of the factory proletariat, there declined in the manufacturing industry the possibility of receiving labor force from villages and other regions, due to the fact that vacant jobs were increasingly occupied by those who came from the working-class families. This conduced to strengthening the socio-economic enclaveness of the working class, the gradual decay of the process of proletarianisation, as well as to the development of pauperisation.

KEYWORDS:  worker; peasant; ties to the land; village; departure on earnings.

Tatiana Savina

"Proletarii" and " bourgeois": foreign borrowings
in political vocabulary in peasants' "letters to power" in the 1920s 

The article examines the process of changing the semantic field of the units of borrowed political vocabulary in peasant environment in the 1920s. The pair "bourgeoisie" and "proletariat" sets the example of transforming the ideological component of political concepts under the influence of extralinguistic factors. Peasants’ "letters to power" are of particular interest for studying the flexibility of the semantics of political vocabulary in revolutionary and post-revolutionary Russia, since the peasants were the most illiterate and politically unaware group of the population. The way the peasants used the new borrowed political vocabulary is viewed as the basic model of how the common people acquired the essentials of the Soviet "newspeak".

KEYWORDS: Lingua Sovetica; "letters to power"; political vocabulary; foreign borrowings; the proletariat; the bourgeoisie.

Andrey Savin, Victor Donnighaus

"Letters to pover" as a modus of religious dissidence in the Brezhnev era

The article examines the phenomenon of communication between the religious dissident movement of Russian Protestants led by the Evangelical Christian-Baptist Churches Council and power in the Brezhnev era. "Letters to power" of believers and documents of the Council for Religious Affairs under the Council of Ministers of the USSR for 1964-1982 reflect the formation of a new model of interaction between the Soviet authorities and Protestant organizations. Protestants reacted sharply to any restrictions of religious freedoms addressing collective written appeals to both the Soviet authorities and international organizations. As a result, "letters to power" have turned into an effective tool for public protection of the rights of believers. The authorities in turn closely monitored appeals of believers and reacted to them in order to correct state religious policy in a certain way.

KEYWORDS: Protestantism; religious dissidents; "letters to power"; Council for the Affairs of Religious Cults; KGB; Brezhnev era.

Label and Myths

Ol’ga Zaichenko

Capital as representation of the empire and the myth
“about the self-reformer”»

Analyzing German literature of the thirties–forties of the 19th century, the author examines the process of formation of "Petersburg" narrative in the context of conservative discourse on Russia as an ambivalent construct based on personal impressions of eyewitnesses, on the one hand, and on political myths and ideologies on the other.

KEYWORDS: Russia; Germany; St. Petersburg; emperor; myth; liberals; conservators.

Readers’ Letters

Nikolay Mitrofanov

Life in the mausoleums of myths

The text consists of two parts that represent a certain unity of fragments of mythological character and points of attraction of the interested public. Such interest is understandable, as through the world history there appeared a fascinating variety of plots and guesses bourn out of facts and tall tales about the Tower of Babel and the biblical Noah's Ark. Since the number of interpretations related to cultural artifacts is growing, the author has set himself the task of recalling the importance of the research results in this area, and paying tribute to the experts who helped clarify the real course of the events of the past, contributed in archeological research and decoding of ancient scripts.

KEYWORDS: Babylon; The Tower of Babel; Ararat mountains; Robert Êoldewey; expedition to find the tracks of Noah's ark; Greater and Little Ararat, NATO aerial Photography.

 RUSSIA XXI, 06.2017