Russia — USA: Two Countries, Two Worlds
The author matches two worlds, Russia and USA, against each other and analyzed the history of Russian-American relations which is characterized by recurrent changes of thaws and cooling-downs. In particular, the author deals with opinions of two prominent thinkers and experts in cultural studies of the past, Toсqueville and Keiserling, about possible paths of Russia and USA future development. The time has proved accuracy of these thinkers’ many judgments. The author pays a particular attention to the new monograph by V.L.Mal’kov “Russian and USA in the 20th century”. Mal’kov considers relations of two countries in close connection with problems of spirituality, of the world perception by Americans and Russians taken as cultural entities with their inherent similarities and dissimilarities. The author pays a great attention to cooperation of two countries during the initial phase of the Great Patriotic War and to role played by Franklin D.Roosevelt in development of this cooperation and, first of all, in establishing diplomatic relations between two countries and in creating anti-Hitler coalition with the USSR participation.
The Banality of Evil or Evil of Stupidity
The author focuses on study of the book by the known German political philosopher Hannah Arendt «Eichmann in Jerusalem: A Report on the Banality of Evil». Arendt proves that Eichmann became one of the most terrible criminals in the history of humankind precisely «due to his irreflection», stupidity which is «capable to bring more evil to the world than all evil instincts dormant in any person». Process of the world cognition for Arendt has not just social and political but also ethical meaning. Free of banalities, the book on the banality of evil is filled with original ideas and approaches to issues that seem to be clear and solved in the historical literature long ago.
Notes on Herbert Wells, a Globalist Dreamer and a Sharp Realist
The author analyzes certain theoretical conceptions that were advanced by Herbert Wells and are included in his three-volume autobiography recently published in Russia. The particular attention is devoted to Wells' opinions on the future of humankind and to his forecasts that came true or failed. Wells' ‘sketch of the future' is seen through the present day prism. The concluding section of the article is devoted to Wells' thoughts about Russia and his portrait sketches of Lenin, Stalin, Gorky.
Fundamentals of US Business Culture
The American civilization is the product of Enlightenment epoch. It radically differs from other civilizations. Historical and geographical circumstances had a tremendous impact on business culture of a young nation. Unlike countries of the Old World country which was to become US was not suffering from remnants of feudalism. Protestantism as the stimulant to social and economic activities and spiritual influence of Britain facilitated formation of market mentality in almost every sphere of American society life. A businessman, an entrepreneur enjoying a relatively high level of success and public recognition became the social type specific to the USA.
Excerpts from a Dilettant-Traveller’s Diary
The basis of these notes is a diary written in different years during travels across Latin American countries, even though the word «diary» can be applied to these notes in a very tentative sense. In this particular case notes are supplemented by various reminiscences that have emerged after travels as well as by judgments derived from miscellaneous sources that attracted the author’s attention. The focus of these notes occupies discourse on what Latin America and Russia have in common.
«I just Was Born as Émigré». «America in Diaries, 1973–1983» by Aleksandr Shmeman
The author focuses his attention on «Diaries, 1973−1983» by Aleksandr Shmeman, a prominent religious (Orthodox) thinker of the mid-20th century. More exactly, the author focuses on Shmeman’s opinion about of the United States. Shmeman who was born out of Russia and spent most of his life in the US from cradle to grave felt himself to be a «particle of the Russian people» (his ancestors along maternal line were Russians). Father Aleksandr steadfastly watched the daily life of US, the country of his residence. He watched stratagems of US domestic and foreign policies of the 1970s and 1980s and provided refined comparative characterizations of the Russians and Americans. He offered his own interpretation of some aspects of US presidents' activities and argued about the American democracy which he compared with the European democracy. He expressed his opinions of the American literature, arts and paid attention to great variety of individual manifestations of the American life. One cannot but admit that Shmeman’s thoughts continue to take part in the present day controversies for these thoughts suggest specific variants of answers to questions the contemporary life puts before use.