RUSSIA XXI, 01.2018

national doctrine 

Valeriy Soldatenko

“To Constitute the Autonomous Crimean Socialist Republic

as a Part of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic”.

J.V.Stalin and Creation of the Crimean Autonomy (1921)

The article highlights the process of the Crimean Autonomous Socialist Soviet Republic formation, the key role in which was played by the People's Commissar for National Affairs of the RSFSR Government I.V.Stalin. The ten months search for optimal model of the national and state status of the Crimea in 1921 resulted in the choice of a variant that can be defined as territorial autonomy taking into account the historical tradition with elements of national coloring.

KEYWORDS: People's Commissar for Nationalities Affairs; Crimea; RSFSR; USSR; Territorial Soviet Republic; Autonomous Soviet Republic; Autonomous Region.

Pages of History

Elena Kirillova

Political Sentiments in the Russian Society
in the Early 20th Century (According to Letters Addressed to John of Kronshtadt)

The article considers political moods in Russian society in the early twentieth century based on the study of letters to famous priest Ioann of Kronstadt (Ioann Kronstadtskii; 1829–1908), stored in the Central State Historical Archive of St. Petersburg. Since the authors of the letters belonged to various estates and political camps, the letters reflect a wide spectrum of social views. The Ioann's confrontation with Lev Tolstoi was also the subject of significant correspondence, anti-Tolstoi sentiment of the letters authors is actually indicate the concern about the overall social situation in Russia. The article concludes that the documents give a most clear idea of the sentiments of the conservative part of Russian society whose representatives believed it was important to follow the traditions and to preserve the Orthodox Church's role in society.

KEYWORDS: Ioann Kronstadtskii; political reforms; Orthodox Church; political consciousness; tradition; conservatism.

Nikita Pivovarov

Example Taken from the “Old Guard’s” Life: the Old Bolsheviks Society as an Experience
of Revolutionaries’ Adaptation (1922–1935)

The article analyzed the main problems of formation and functioning of the Society of old Bolsheviks. This organization united almost the entire political elite of post-revolutionary Soviet Russia. The article reveals the reasons for the establishment of the corporation in 1922, analyze its structure, social composition, as well as key activities (cultural, educational, publishing and social). The publication makes special emphasis on the role of the organization and its members in the political processes of the 1920s – the first half of the 1930-ies, a hypothesis was propos about the causes of the Society's abolition in 1935.

KEYWORDS: the society of old Bolsheviks; the Central Committee of the RCP(b); the political elite; Stalin.

Andrey Sushkov

A Slight Digression from the Rules or a Challenge
to the Stalinist System? More on Some Aspects of the “Leningrad Affair”

This article discusses some of the charges against the main persons involved in the so-called “Leningrad affair” – one of the most important political affairs of the "late Stalin period". These “Leningraders” were planning to establish a leading party organ for the RSFSR. Regardless of whether the “Leningraders” were aware of this or not, this would entail significant shifts in the supreme leadership of the USSR, the redistribution of powers in the highest organs of power, and the appearance there of one of the most influential figures. At the Leningrad Party Conference in 1948, the results of the secret ballot were falsified. This was not only a consequence of the propensity to violate the rule of law and the self-aggrandizement of the Leningrad bosses, but also a threat to the Stalinist system of power. It consisted in the fact that the “Leningraders” demonstrated the way to nullify the secret ballot in the party organizations, which was introduced by Stalin in 1937 as one of the main elements of “inner-party democracy”.

KEYWORDS: «Leningrad affair»; party and state system of the power; «late stalinism» period; administrative practices.

Labels and Myths

Alexander Korolev

The Legend of Calling of the Varangians: in Pursuit of the “Historical Core”

This article examines the famous annalistic legend of calling of the Varangian princes. The author challenges the conclusion of some researchers that Chronicles the tale is based on a legal act (treaty). Arguments are given in favor of the provision on the exclusively folklore origin of the legend.

KEYWORDS: Rus’; Varangians; Rjurik; Varangian legend; Povest’ Vremennych Let; rjad (treaty).

Andrey Ranchin

“The Legend of Calling
of the Varangians”: Facts, Assumptions, Speculations

The author considers various interpretations of the Chronicle’s legend of calling of the Varangians, in particular, the concept suggested by E.A.Mel’nikova and V.Ya.Petrukhin who argue the legend retained information on a treaty Rurik concluded with peoples who summoned him. The author also analyzes critics of the “contractual” hypothesis by various researchers. It is demonstrated that this hypothesis relies on a number of cogent arguments but has some vulnerabilities. Due to the lack of necessary evidence it is difficult either to recognize the treaty indisputable or reject the very existence of the treaty.

KEYWORDS: the legend of calling of the Varangians; the chronicle; saga; folklore; Rurik; treaty.

Topical Archive

Andrey Yurganov

The Soviet Journalism’s First Steps

There were many people who had no time to determine their side (because the process of division had just begun) in the first professional organization of journalists that was created in 1918 immediately upon the revolution. The organization was the Noah’s ark of the Soviet culture. The author considers the disputes that began among various representatives of the Soviet culture and revealed impossibility of their unity and solidarity. The Soviet journalists’ Union was doomed because the society in its post-revolutionary condition turned out to be absolutely fragmented. The Noah’s ark of the Soviet culture in the ocean of revolution found “the land” where it was decided to stop, to step out and gain the expanse under feet: for proletarian writers and journalists the expanse became the proletarian domain, for S.Yesenin and his comrades it turned out to be the imagistic land, for representatives of the Left front it became the Left front domain and for those who thought the culture as separated from the proletarian dictatorship still considered the culture as the modernist culture. So conditions for the harshest competition of new culture’s directions fighting with each other were gradually created. Each of these directions held to become the principal, mainstream and the only direction in culture and society.

KEYWORDS: The Soviet Journalists’ Union; the Proletarian Culture; Sergei Yesenin; modernism; dictatorship of the proletariat.

 RUSSIA XXI, 01.2018