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RUSSIA XXI

Secret Service Versus the Imperial Chancellery: Myth or Reality?

The article deals with the creation and activities of the «Holy retinue» which was the secret organization of the court Russian aristocracy. According to the conventional story, its aim was to defend the Emperor’s family and to fight «revolutionary false doctrines». However, the analysis of this body’s activities and prospects set forth by the body’s members demonstrates that in fact the body was set up to carry out the political control over the secret services. The author points out the similarity of the «Holy retinue» and the ideological counterintelligence inside the KGB of the USSR. The author thinks that the issues he raised in respect of the «Holy retinue» history, relationships between the KGB and the Soviet Communist Party’s elite cannot but be a subject of interest for the contemporary Russian politicians.
The article deals with analysis of the state government ways that were peculiar for V. I. Lenin. The author also considers Lenin’s ideas of the state apparatus’ efficiency. The analysis is based on the correspondence Lenin carried on as the leader of the Soviet government. The analysis demonstrates that Lenin completely disregarded all formal characteristics of the state such as its organization model, functional specialty or level of competence. Lenin understood the state apparatus as a combination of persons distinguished not by their posts or positions within the structure but by their individual abilities. For Lenin, the statesmanship consisted in free manipulation with individuals which was combined with imposing the absolute responsibility for everything on the appointed commissioners extraordinary. At the end of the article the author compares Lenin’s methods of government with the methods peculiar to the present day Russian government.
The problem of historical sources’ interpretation is coming out in the spotlight of the contemporary humanitarian sciences. This is caused by the onward development of theoretical sources’ study which nowadays defines the search for the most correct and unbiased ways of texts interpretation as its principal task. As this is done, the object of historical study is no more the likely past «reality» but an opinion of an author who created the source. So peculiar subject-subjective relationship between a scholar and the «other person’s» conscience fragments of which are embodied in monuments of the past are established. In this case the very historical text comes out in capacity of the singular likely reality which is the most important integral part of the cognitive process. However this position cannot be accepted as a whole with no accompanying reservations. The article is devoted to the theoretical disputes in the contemporary humanitarian sciences.
The author presents the political portrait of Otto von Bismark, one of the most influential and famous European statesmen of the 19th century. She makes an attempt to look at Bismark through the prism of his youth when the basic professional qualities as a politician and diplomat and his character were taking their peculiar shape. The author refutes, step by step, some stable stereotypes including myths produced by the Soviet historical science, unravels intricacy and contradictory nature of Bismark's personality and policies. As the author points out, as the unification of Germany was completed Bismark set forth, as the target of his foreign policy, preservation of the peace in Europe, not initiation of the war. However Bismark succeeded in prevention of the all-European war at the expense of growth of militarism and enhancement of animosity among the European states. That finally brought about the World War I. Bismark led the empire successfully but when he departed from the scene he left the nation deprived of the political education and the political will. Having achieved the unification of Germany Bismark made a genuine historical breakthrough but later he had to leave the political scene because of his futile attempts to construct obstacles on the way of the powerful tide of novelties.

The «Kikes and Masons' Conspiracy» from the History of Myth Perception

The author considers the Russians' attitudes to the notorious myth about the world conspiracy made by Jews and masons. The myth emerged at the end of the 19th century within the stream of the Russian conservatism evolution and proved to be the result of the deliberate myth-making. Prior to the revolution of February, 1917, the rightist monarchist organizations tried to use the myth as an instrument which helped them to enhance their influence on the ruling groups. Later the myth acquired the anti-Communist trend and became an explanation of the old regime collapse. In the USSR the myth’s revival occurred in the years when Stalinism reached its climax. However, nowadays the myth is disseminated by and finds its adherents among those who returned to the initial, pseudo patriotic version of the myth. Tracing back peculiarities of each phase of the myth existence and considering the environment in which the myth was perceived the author relates and collates mythologems to the real history of the Russian masonry, the significance and role of which in the events of the early 20th century are obviously exaggerated.

The Fatal 1941: Did the USSR Prepare Aggression against Germany

The author investigates the version about the «preventive» nature of German attack on the USSR in 1941. Recently the version has gained a considerable popularity in historical literature and in mass media. On the basis of numerous facts and documents the author demonstrates that the Kremlin had no intention to attack Germany and in the case of war the combat capabilities of the Red Army did not allow to achieve a success in a massive strategic offensive against the Wehrmacht which was the world’s strongest army at the time. The author argues that the Soviet failures at the beginning of the war were due to the inadequate appraisal of the international situation by the Soviet political leaders, miscalculations of the Red Army high commanders, their misjudgments about the nature of the forthcoming war and the foe’s strength. Underdevelopment of the USSR which just recently had taken the path of industrialization and still lagged behind the developed capitalist states also had its negative impact on the preparation of the USSR.

Hitler's Politic of Misinformation before the Attack against the USSR

On the basis of the German documents the author examines the special operation of the Hitlerite secret services aimed at misinformation of the USSR political leadership and military high command in regard of Germany’s military and political intentions on 1941 and possible terms of the German attack against the USSR. The author investigates various options of misinformation and methods of misleading and offers an answer to the question why did the Soviet leaders were so slow with giving the order to the along the border military districts' troops to get ready for combat.

In Search of the Lost Alternative: the New «Paradigm» and Paradoxes of the Historical Science

The author deals with a questionable direction in the contemporary historical science, i.e., theory of the lost alternatives and virtual role-games. The author investigates epistemologic problems (problems of the humanitarian disciplines' method) as well as the specific content of the alternative studies. The attention is focused on the problem of the modern historical science’s ethos (its moral standards). What is the social responsibility of a historian, how far are we to go in our search of the truth, what is the ethics of an interpretator who reconstructs a non-existent historical reality — the author offers his answers to these and other questions.

Mongols in the wirlwind of centuries

The author deals with a set of problems related to formation of empires as super-ethnic entities. The author accepts cultural and linguistic diversity and co-existence of religions as indispensable properties of empires. However the crucial property of an empire is the single ideology and strictly regulated state cult. In all epochs an empire as a fact of the world history presupposes the domination of a single idea, one universal mythology. The author points out that with no answer to the question what was the specific essence of the Mongolian empire and the ulus system which emerged all over the Central Asian space it is impossible to understand the subsequent development of separate states that existed with the Mongolian sphere. To answer the question one has to reconstruct the very mythology of the Mongolian empire. Religious toleration and ability to integrate more and more tribes and nations within the sphere of the Mongolian empie’s influence were determined by enormous impact Tengrianism had as the state religion and a complex cult. Mongols of the Middle Ages perceived the earthly and celestial worlds as the indivisible unity which could not be decomposed.

The Sovereign Order of Malta: the European reality or a historical rudiment?

The Order of Malta is a state enjoining the status of exterritoriality. Nowadays it is located in Italy. It is over nine centuries old and its history is intertwined with the past and present of Europe and Russia. The Order was founded in Jerusalem and repeatedly changed its locations. In the process it was called either the Order of the knights of Cyprus or Rhodes and, since 1530, it bears the name of the Order of Malta. In fact, it always remained to be the Order of the Hospitallers of St. John of Jerusalem. In the 16th and 17th centuries it became a mighty military state which put an end to the Turkish dominance over the Mediterranean. The greatest activity in relations of the Order of Malta and Russia was due to the period of Paul I, the Emperor of Russia, reign. In 1797 Paul I concluded the Convention with the Order and at the request of its leaders became its Protector. When Ferdinand Gompesh, the Grand Master of the Order, after a short resistance surrendered Malta to Napoleon no Catholic ruler of Western Europe did offer a help to the Order. However, it was the Orthodox Russian emperor who gave the help. In the subsequent 200 years history of the Order there were periods when its activity was suspended, periods of collaboration with governments of fascist Italy and Nazi Germany. Several times the Order experienced interference of Vatican, its powerful patron. More than once the problem of sovereignty emerged in the most acute forms. During the past 100 years the Order is engaged in charity and humanitarian activities and tries its best to return to Malta.
G. Aleksinski’s life seen against the background of events Aleksinski was involved in allows a better understanding of peculiarities of Bolshevism as a phenomenon not just political but also social and cultural, genetically connected to the popular conscience’s peculiar mental features and to perception of the world by the intelligentsia in Russia. Aleksinski, the flamboyant denouncer of the Bolshevists who had been a supporter of Lenin earlier, was an odious figure among the post-October emigrants and retained a reputation of a Bolshevist of a kind. Those who described Aleksinski in this way meant not his views (these were not distinguished by their stability) but a specific style of behavior, psychological sketch of his personality. Aleksinski, the perpetual denouncer remained a lone politician even in his star hour, when the sensational declaration on the Bolshevist leaders' ties with Germany was published. In the revolutionary conditions the patriotic moods the initiators of the action and Aleksinski aimed at did not display any stability and did not prevent Bolshevists from coming to power. However one of the advantages the Bolshevists had in comparison to their competitors was precisely the open rupture with the tradition of moral restraints in politics. What was at that time estimated as the moral deficiency at the individual level was converted in the instrument of the revolutionary mobilization of the people and of power retaining

The Origins of the First American Crusade for a «Free Russia»

Between 1885 and 1905 the traditional American view of Russia as a friendly Christian empire gave way to a missionary crusade to reform the backward autocracy and emancipate the oppressed Russian people. This historic shift in American attitudes did not arise solely from increasing realism about tsarist repression or anger at Russian expansion in the Far East, as previous studies asserted. To fully understand the fundamental reorientation, historians must also examine how Americans came to channel their evangelical fervor toward Russia and how they reconsidered the racial status of the Russian people. In that light, the crusade for a «free Russia» can be understood as part of the global extension of an American civilizing mission, which had the gratifying effect of reinforcing confidence in the special virtues of the United States. Thus, we can see in the 1885−1905 period the early origins of both a century-long drive to remake Russia and a long-term tendency to treat Russia as a «dark double» or «imaginary twin» of the U.S.
In works of Russian writers of the 19th century the governor was the most typical representative of the top Russian bureaucracy world. Literary sources reflected differences in various estates and social groups' attitudes to the governor and the exaggerated hopes that the public opinion too often conferred upon the chief of gubernia. At the same time, as one may see in literary works the governor’s own broad notions of his mission were combined with the aspiration to be not so much the «master» and the chief of gubernia but rather the intermediary and arbitrator as well as the center of the local good society.

After Science: on Techniques of Humanitarian Ideologies

The article deals with techniques and fundamental philosophical assumptions of the contemporary studies of literature and cultural-historical concepts. Claiming the solution of the humanitarian knowledge’s principal issues representatives of subjectivist directions make ideological arguments their main weapon and thereby overcome, in their own fashion, positivist assumptions. However the humanitarian knowledge oriented towards ideology inadvertently turns out to be an ally of the post-modernist epistemology. Scholar’s «egoism» and consumerists super-tasks set against the collective experience of science are conquering the unoccupied intellectual space. And now personal opinion or personal faith of a scientist, freedom of his/her conscience means by far more than the source-aware conscience’s reality. Two polar approaches to the history of culture, the conservative and liberal-atheistic approaches are compared to each other. In both cases representatives of the respective concepts refer to their own positions as to an important fact of science and a theoretical model. Strangely enough, polarities complement each other: studies of literature that make the absolute of the immutable and studies of culture that assume the making without the subject of the process generate equally destructive and disorganizing effect on the modern humanitarian science. These extremities need not so much reconciliation as a dialectical and creative overcoming, a renewing synthesis.
American views of post-Soviet Russia have swung from one extreme to another over the last decade: from enthusiasm about an overnight transformation to pessimism about an unchangeable country; from libera democratic universalism to stigmatization of a unique, non-Western culture; from optimism about international cooperation to demonization of Russian opposition to U.S. policies and then back to near-euphoria about an alliance against terrorism. To move beyond such pendular swings and stabilize American-Russian relations, Americans need to abandon teleological assumptions about Russia’s future and Russia should avoid steps that reinforce negative American stereotypes.

The century of choice: the Russian state ideology of the 17th century

The author deals with problems of the state ideology development in the 17th century, the last century of the Muscovite Tsardom’s existence. A succession of violent events started with the Troubled times, presented a series of complicated issues to the state and the people. Decisions of these issues had to determine the further course of Russia’s historical development. Like many other powers the Russian kingdom had to reconsider and reappraise the system of relationships between the Tsar and the people and to make a definite decision on the desirable character of the authority, whether it should have been an elective or hereditary one, limited or absolute. Relationships of the State and the Church acquired a peculiar acuteness. Later on these problems transformed into «Moscow is the Third Rome» and «Moscow is the New Jerusalem» theories. The problem of attitude toward possibility of reformation and innovations was one of the crucial issues the Russian society confronted with. Uneasy, fraught and connected with the social upheavals and conflicts solution of all these issues made the 17th century «the century of choice» in the Russian history.

Who is who? Nations' origins and destinies seen in the «folklore ideology» light

Notions of one’s «own» nation and «alien» nations reflected in the popular ethiological legends clearly demonstrate the most universal motives inherent in the folklore image of «alien» ethnic entities. Notions of the «alien» groups include beliefs in the «primacy» of one’s own ethnic group, the original «goodness» or «correctness» of this group, as well as beliefs in «inhuman» nature of the aliens, the «beast» nature or the aliens' connections to the other world. As such notions take place the idea of ethnocentrism is the fundamental one and reigns supreme. Within this idea the positive attitude towards people belonging to one’s own ethnic group and negative treatment of the «aliens» are often presented in mythological thought’s terms. The distinct peculiarity of the folklore narratives in the ethnic identification theme is not just their amazing stability (the article is based on materials from various times, from the 19th century to the present day) but the organic ties of these narratives with the «world history» in its folklore interpretation which unites the genesis, events related in the Old and New Testaments and historical facts kept in collective memory in mythological form.

The Ancient Russian Man in the Face of Death (to be continued)

The author attempts to reconstruct the basic elements if the death mythology which existed in the Muskovite state of the 15th-17th centuries and provides answers to a series of questions that normally are left out of this historians' view. What was the death in the medieval Russian culture? How did people explained the reasons of death and terms of its arrival? How did an ancient Russian imagine his/her transition to the other world and posthumous existence of the soul? How did he/she prepare for leaving the vale of tears? In the medieval time the world of the dead and the world of the alive were not tightly separated from each other. The dead' souls could appear to the alive to pray the alive for protection while the alive did not lose the hope to help their dead and believed in their ability to affect their lot beyond the grave. The Church taught the whole life of a human being, from the cradle to the gray hairs had to be subordinated to the thought about forthcoming death and devoted to the spiritual preparation for the end. However to deserve the salvation it was not enough to pass the life through righteously. On the very verge of death a person who could never known whether he had confessed in all sins and washed them away with repentance or not had to perform a series of «the transition rites»: to make a her confession, to take the last communion, to ask for pardon from his relatives and to bless them or monk fraternity which gathered at his/her death-bed. It was precisely why a sudden death (or an accidental death far from the people) was considered to be the true sign of the God’s wrath against the deceased and of the eternal torment that waited for the deceased beyond the grave. The author analyzes notions of death and the other world within the framework of an ancient Russian’s ideas of the Universe, the human nature and the Providence as the driving force of history.

The Ancient Russian Man in the Face of Death (the end)

In Part 2 of his article the author develops his investigation of the medieval Russian eschatology further and makes an attempt to provide answers to several interrelated questions. How did a medieval Russian imagine the arrangement and geography of the world beyond the grave? How did these ideas transform in the 12th-17th centuries? Since the earliest centuries of Christianity the Church writers put a tough question and tried to find answer to it. The question was where souls of the deceased abode from the moment of their separation from the bodies and until the Day of Judgment which would have to follow at the end of times. To answer the question a doctrine of the «private» judgment beyond the grave was elaborated. According to the doctrine, souls of the deceased were divided at this judgment and left in waiting for the final retribution between the Heaven and the hell. In result of this doctrine not one but two judgments appeared in minds of believers and too often it was difficult to separate functions and meaning of these two judgments. Over the greater part of the Russian Middle Ages the fear of death and of the afterlife judgment was suppressed in consciousness of believers by the intense anticipation of the end of times, of advent of Antichrist and the Doomsday. In the second half of the 17th century a gradual change of eschatological paradigm occurred. The image of death was getting to be increasingly appalling. By the beginning of the 18th century the Russian Church gradually accepted the belief that the Day of Judgment which was promised in the Gospel and the Apocalypse would happen not soon and a human was able neither to calculate nor know the time of its advent. In order to acquire the salvation a pious Christian had to be always prepared for his/her death, to think of it and to feel the constant fear of it. The death became a substitute for the Day of Judgment. As the Middle Ages passed to the New time an individualization of the religious experience occurred and this process may testify the profound transformations in the depths of the whole Russian culture and public consciousness.

Boris Godunov. Pride and Humility in Medieval Russia

The author investigates the dramatic period of Russian history, the deep cultural crisis that took place at the beginning of the 17-th century and was called by its contemporaries «the Time of Troubles». The historian tries to explore self-consciousness of contemporaries of the time, to reconstruct ideas and notions settled in their minds. Running a historical-phenomenology investigation, he tries to reconstruct the myths of the culture, myths as the way of understanding life and happenings. What ideas will come to light as a result? How did the contemporaries comprehend and evaluate miseries and dramatic events of the time? Trying to reveal the roots of such cultural phenomenon as Time of Troubles, the author offers to investigate the «mythreality» of people of the 17-th century. Could the knowledge, attained here, alter our idea of the past? An effort to answer these questions the author makes in the article, dedicated to the first tsar of the dramatic period, the famous boyar on the throne — Boris Godunov.
Despite the existing tradition to make use of any ancient text which explains results of archeological research a «new archeology» which negates use of Biblical texts for interpretation of archeological data has appeared within chairs of Israeli universities. Real archeological findings have convinced even those scientists who had been sceptical about the Israeli historical tradition in authenticity of the Biblical text. The «new archeologists» cast doubt on the Biblical narrative about forefathers of the Biblical nation, about exodus from Egypt and the conquest of Eretz Israel. Typically scepticism of this kind is demonstrated by the researchers who, for the sake of their political aims, argue that the Scripture has been used by Zionists for justification of expulsion of Arabs from their land.

Worse than a Сonspiracy

If D. Hazoni's articles deals with methodological principles of the «new archeology» D. Kontorer exposes the political underlying reasons of the «new archeology». The present day Israelis have demonstrated vulnerability to the powerful psychological pressure which has always exercised on the Jews and begot many renegades who assimilated the image of Jewry the anti-Semites instilled. The author concludes that when there is a social demand for ideas of certain kind these ideas find a place in any science. The Israeli scientists cultivate the intellectual soil for the forthcoming genocide of Jews.

When Did Russia Begin To Be Perceived as the «Threat» to the West?

The article deals with the time reference point from which onwards ideological, cultural and civilizational confrontation of Russia and the West began. This confrontation found its expression in the propaganda myth about «Moskovia as the threat for the Christendom» which was invented in Renaissance Europe. The author connects emergence of the myth with the Livonian was (1558−1583) which was the first in the succession of wars Russia fought against a coalition of European states. «The Russian theme» for the first time became a subject of vigorous attempts of the Western intellectuals and politicians of Renaissance Europe to understand the phenomenon of Russia. In the process Russia was attributed with historical phobias generated due to internal European problems as well as by experience of Western communication with the East during the Crusades. In result the image of Russia established in the European propaganda literature poorly corresponded to the reality but it embraced many political and cultural phobias of Europeans. The image of Russia was invented in accordance with principle of «anti-world» modeling. Creators of this image tried to embody all «non-European» traits, that is everything barbarian, non-Christian, infernal. Many of phobias generated in Renaissance epoch are still effective assumptions of the policies of the West toward Russia. It should be emphasized that Europe needs such «anti-mirror»: it places its own sins in this «anti-mirror» without long thoughts whether the resulting picture corresponds to the reality or not. One of historical roles Russia performs in «West-East» system of civilizations is brought to the role of the «anti-world» without which Europe will not feel itself the supreme top of the global community.

How Jews fought according to Solzhenitsyn and in reality

А.I.Solzhenitsyn has marred his long and glorious pilgrimage in the literature and public life by massive (about one thousand pages) two volume pseudo-historical treatise «Two hundred years together». The book deals with the common living of Russians and Jews in single Russian state. People of wit immediately invented another title to the book: «Two hundred years apart». This ironic title in the best possible way passes the spirit and content of the Nobel prize winner’s swan song. Solzhenitsyn has exceptionally vividly expressed the old, inherited from the Black Hundred idea that Jews are not just a foreign body in Russia but that they, by every their action, have promoted collapse of the Russian statehood, spirituality and culture. Even participation of Jews in the Great Patriotic War Solzhenitsyn contrived to present in such way that, according to him, Jews preferred to hole up in the rear and if by a chance got to the frontline then, most often, found positions in some safe and comfortable places and services and did their best to avoid real fighting. Even if both volumes of «Two hundred years together» are full of lies and falsified from first to last «During the war with Germany» chapter stinks of anti-Semitism for, as it proved to be, Solzhenitsyn is impregnated to the marrow of his bones.

The Program of the Jewish Conquest of the World and the Mystery of «The Protocols of the Learned Elders of Zion» Emergence Revised

No single book has brought so much of sorrow and blood to Jews as «The Protocols of the learned elders of Zion» has. During the Civil war in Russia the book used to be the principal ideological substantiation for Jewish pogroms and persecution of Jews. The book played the same role in Nazi Germany. In the first half of the 20th century «The Protocols» broke all records in respect of print runs. However when checked the book of the century, to the utmost snafu, proved to be the forgery of the century. It was concocted by agents of the Tsarist Secret Service (Okhranka) and it was published for the first time in December, 1905, in Tsarskoye Selo where Emperor Nicolas II held his residence. And only in early 1920s, when the world was already flooded with «The Protocols», it was discovered that the book was a mere turned pamphlet «Dialogues in hell between Machiavelli and Montesquieu» written by a French pamphleteer Maurice Joly in 1864 and pointed against Napoleon III.

History in the Light of «Folklore» Mythology: from Paganism to Christianity

The article is written within the framework of «Slavic mythology: results and prospects of inter-disciplinary studies» research project. The project’s aim is to detect archaic elements of the popular culture that survived in languages, historical and archeological sources, in folklore, rites and beliefs of Slavs and in a varying degree reflect complex of mythological notions specific to pre-Slavic epoch and to construe them from the viewpoint of the most recent discoveries achieved in Slavic studies. The «mythological» themes that reflect peculiarities of perception of history by bearers of traditional culture are of particular significance within the limits of this study. It is exactly because of this fact material contained in popular legends that to varying extent reflect the historical past of Rus and Russia has become so attractive for the authors. In the article authors consider plots connected with notions of Slavic deities, christening of Rus and selection of religion, foundation of Kiev and reflection of confessional polemics. Material from literary and oral sources demonstrates that this circle of themes is subject to «mythological» treatment in the sphere of Medieval book-learning as well as in folklore.

The Tormentor’s power. Conventional Models of Tyranny in the Russian History

The author undertakes an attempt to examine models of the tyrannical power that emerged in the Russian literary culture of the 11th to 17th century. The author identifies and analyzes the predominant ways of description of the conflict between the victim and the ruler-tormentor. Original ideological constant of the martyrdom for the sake of the faith was augmented by a new prototype plot based on typological story of Cain and Abel. The first Russian saints were beatified by the Church precisely as the innocent martyrs. Other victims followed their suit and also humbled themselves before their murderers and persecutors. However, as early as in pre-Mongolian period a new conventional model of a proud and unjust coreligionist was being developed. Since authority of a ruler must not extend to his subjects' souls the resistance had to be furnished to such prince. Gradually this notion acquired an eschatological tinge and the early Christian mythologeme of a martyr opposing the ungodly authority asserted itself with a new vigor. Eschatological expectations and prophetic protest became obvious and audible in the epoch of Schism. The semantic dominant tenet of the Russian medieval doctrine of power was the power’s establishment by the God and that tenet influenced the discursive practices.

To Gain a Sight of the Invisible: the Medieval Visionary and Theologian

Visions of the other world played a very important role in the Medieval Europe’s culture. They let a person to penetrate the next life’s mysteries, were visual illustrations of the ecclesiastical eschatology, established links between the world of the living and that of the dead and performed many other functions as well. Historians for a long time and fruitfully have used texts of visions as the sources for investigation of the Medieval culture, religious life and psychology of a Medieval person. However it is for from easy to work with these texts. They speak a very complicated language of the visual images that have deep roots in the Christian symbolics and are not clear and plain to a present day researcher. Too often we do not know how these texts were read in the Medieval time and who constituted the audience for such texts. How attitude to them changed over the time? How these texts had to be understood, in the literal or allegorical sense? What was the perception of the other world visions in the popular and scholarly cultures? The author attempts to give answers to these questions.

The Subject of the Philosophy of Mythology and Emergence of the Discipline in Russia

The philosophy of mythology subject encompasses the foundations of myth-making and regularities of myths’ historical evolution. Designing of the non-construed specific sensual imagery by the conscience constitutes the basis of myth-making. This ability of the conscience does not disappear with the decay of the primordial society. Rather, it tens to be transferred from lower, earlier types of spirituality to higher, more culturally sophisticated ones. The historical fates of the philosophy of mythology are saturated with high-stakes drama and characterized by alternation of the heady blossom periods with periods of decline and oblivion. The Russian philosophy of mythology took its shape at the turn of the 18th and 19th centuries and was aimed at development of general philosophical understanding and methodological prerequisites of the peculiar scientific understanding of the Slavic mythology. The period of accumulation of empirical and theoretical prerequisites for the philosophy of mythology in Russia evolved into the process of the discipline’s immediate making which started with «The brief review of the Russian Slavs’ mythology» work written by P.M.Stroev in 1815 and went on up to the emergence of the «mythological school» in the Russian folklore studies in 1840s and 1850s.

The «Historical» Portrait against the «Folklore» Landscape Background

The authors deal with one of the «folklore and history» problem’s aspects, specifically with reflection of knowledge about historical figures in the popular stories and legends. There is no doubt that popular legendary stories do not contain a «biographical» portrait of any historical personality. Moreover, due to the impact of the folklore narrative laws historical figures acquire fantastic qualities and by virtues of these fit the whole folklore mythological image of the world quite smoothly. How historical images are transformed in popular texts, what are the laws that govern incorporation of historical facts into the folklore imaginative system, to what archetype images historical characters are related — these are just a few issues the authors of the article address to. Some folklore «portraits» of historical personalities that placed themselves in the memory of the people and in the «oral history» (princes of the Ancient Rus, Peter I, Katherine the Great and Napoleon) are presented in the article. The article is based on the materials derived, first and foremost, from archive and field sources.

The Subject of the Philosophy of Mythology and Emergence of the Discipline in Russia (the end)

In the second part of his article the author analyses social, cultural and ideological prerequisites of the Russian philosophy of mythology emergence. This discipline emerged and developed in the second half of the 18th century and in the early 19th century in the works of the first Russian historians and myth creators. It was aimed at search and elaboration of basic methodological and worldview orientations for concrete scientific cognition of the Slavic mythology. Period of empirical and theoretical prerequisites accumulation of the philosophy of mythology in Russia grew up into process of its immediate emergence and went on until appearance of the «mythological school» in the Russian folklore studies (the 1840s and 1850s). This school developed well beyond limits of specific theoretical generalizations related exclusively to the Slavic mythology and achieved the level of conceptual abstracts of the general theory of myth. Results and achievements of the Russian philosophy of mythology have not lost their significance down to recent times.

«Images of no Image»: To the Evolution of Medieval Russian Ideas of Angels and Demons in the 17th Century

The author studies medieval Russian concepts that concern the world of angels and demons — nature, origin, abilities of the immaterial spirits and their influence upon the world of men. The relevant notions of medieval authors are researched in their evolution from the Middle Ages to the Early Modern Time. The author reconstructs significant ideas of ancient Russian literature in the context of works of early-Christian authors that were popular in Russia and traces the evolution of those ideas in the «transitional» XVII century. Can a demon kill, create or alter material things? What are the limits of demonic power in the earthy world? Can an angel err, sin or not obey the will of God? What are the limits of his freedom? Medieval scribes and authors of the XVII century found different answers to the questions that were of principal importance for the culture. Modifications that penetrated in traditional concepts in the XVII century appear to be very interesting and often unforeseen. The study of these themes helps deeper understanding of the originality of the epoch that lies between the Middle Ages and the Modern Time.

«Images of no Image»: To the Evolution of Medieval Russian Ideas of Angels and Demons in the 17th Century (the end)

In the final part of his article the author seeks for studying the evolution of canonical Christian ideas, common for medieval Russian literature, in some famous sources of the 17th century. Two autobiographical Lives of the first ideologists of the Old Belief schism, archpriest Avvakum and coenobite Epiphany, written in Pustozersk earthen prison, prove to present two different models of relations between man and God. While Avvakum followed the traditional hagiographical patterns in descriptions of miracles that had happened to him, Epiphany created a story, filled with bright ideas that appear to be both typical and new for the Old Russian literature. The phenomenon originally reflects the process of evolution that kept altering medieval Russian culture throughout the «transitional» century.
Using oral versions of the Armenian folk epic ‘David of Sassoun' the author explores the first part of the epic which contains the narrative on birth from the rock of two ancestors of the Sassoun tribe heroes. Details given in these oral versions allow diving deep into mythological sources of this episode. These sources can be traced back to the most ancient periods of the Armenian nation formation and, at same time, have much in common with mythology of neighboring peoples and even of ancient Slavs. The author demonstrates that legends that emerged around the Armenian St. Grigor Narekats’i, are not just permeated with these mythological images but, in their turn, brought to bear mutual influence on the further development of the epic itself.

Metaphysics of Boycott in Moscow University

Conflict situations that occurred in Moscow University in the late 19th century and were caused by insistent urge of medical department students to assert their rights to the full-fledged higher education and to get instruction from worthy and respected teachers. These situations are investigated on the grounds of archive materials, first of all, on the basis of Moscow law protection department’s files. The article describes how the most famous Moscow therapeutist, distinguished ordinary Professor G.A.Zakhar'in had to resign in result of students' boycott.

Blossom and Berries. In Connection with the 40th Anniversaryof «Youth Revolution»

Un 1960s Western Europe and USA were convulsed with youth riots. A fanciful mix of rock-n-roll, pacifism, anarchism, Maoism and exotic mystics slopped over streets. So called Paris spring became the peak of the movement. Flat 40 years passed since that time. Jubilee publications are written in romantic and nostalgic tones. Que faire? Picturesque and naïve «flower children» could not survive in stone ju7nggles. Their idealism proved to be incompatible with harsh expedient laws of economics and politics. Some iconoclasts died, others «sold themselves to the bourgeoisie» and sit in European parliament. From the author’s point of view, many pillars of the contemporary global world order are realized slogans of the Paris spring. One would think what can the Russian Federation Ministry of education officials have in common with Paris students who marched out under slogans «Professors are out of date!» and «Two times two doesn’t equal four any more!» Meanwhile the orientation to «emancipation» of young people from «superfluous knowledge» lies at the basis of the contemporary so called ‘reform of education'. We confront a paradox: progressive (even too progressive) movement has turned into obscurantist reaction, while long-haired fighters for «total emancipation' didn’t not lose at all and didn’t sell themselves. The social order which asserts itself nowadays in place of capitalism owes a lot to rioters of 1968. If one takes a look form this point of view one will see that finally they conquered hated bourgeois. However by God it would be better if they hadn’t done that…

The Central Rada of Ukraine as the Subject of Myths in the Contemporary Ukrainian Historiography

Attempts undertaken by researchers of Ukraine and Russia to eliminate the gap that emerged between historiography schools of Russia and Ukraine after disintegration of the Soviet statehood not just failed. On the contrary, the gap is getting to increase. The principal reason for that is hidden in the Ukrainian historiography basic ‘paradigm' aimed at ever increasing ideological and mythological components of the Ukrainian history as well as at forgery of the most contradictory facts. Emergence, political nature, and activities of the Central Rada as a political institution from the contemporary Ukrainian statehood takes its ideal origin is one of the most mythologized moments of the 20th century Ukraine history moments. Myths about the Central Rada invented by Ukrainian historians have not a historical but obviously political character and are targeted to forgery of the common historical past, unsubstantiated accusations of the Russian government, and victimization of the Ukrainian party. Such myth invention is easily disclosed by virtue of genuine scientific and objective approach to study of history. Unfortunately, however, until creation of myths, not scientific examination of historical facts will dominate in the Ukrainian historiography the dialogue between historians of Russia and Ukraine will be exceptionally hampered.

«The Silver Age» in Duplex Perspective of the Memory: By the Example of Textbooks on Cultural and Civilization Studies

The author deals with problems of the present-day cultural studies. This discipline contributes to creation of the new, post-Communist man and «man of culture». The civilizational approach to history develops in close connection with cultural studies. The author focuses on problems of the Silver age discovered by representatives of the civilizational school of the Russian humane studies. For the authors of textbooks on cultural studies the Silver age is connected primarily with the Russian religious thought. Culture as religion is the old idea of Symbolists re-discovered by the present-day specialists on cultural studies. This trend of humanitarian and philosophical reflection and theory considers the end of the 19th and the early 20th centuries as an age of spiritual upsurge though attained at the expense of failure to investigate specific historical facts, in isolation from the actual economic, political and ideological context. The Silver age is becoming a Utopia in the present-day Russia and this Utopia is offered as an effective model which pretends to be a role model. The article is a discussion reflection on approbation of the past which is being performed for ideological purposes.

Figure of a Minister in the Popular Perceptions

The confessional dimension of the ‘my own / alien' opposition is one of the principal factors of self-identification. This peculiarity is most vividly manifested in multiethnic and multiconfessional areas where the tradition of Christian Slav population’s neighborhood with representatives of other religions persisted for centuries. Regions where the field studies were carried out (from Bukovina to Grodno region) are exemplary in this respect because Orthodox Christians, Catholics, adherents of Eastern rite Roman Catholicism, and Jews resided in close neighborhood in such regions for a long time (up to World War II). Experience of direct neighborhood could not but leave traces in the popular perceptions of ethnic neighbors' faith and religious rites. Image of a minister in the popular world picture acquires folklore and mythological features.

«An Old Man Passed by…»: Veneration of Saints in the Popular Culture

The author examines the peculiar nature of veneration in the popular tradition on the basis of sources published earlier (in the 19th and 20th centuries) as well as the most recent unpublished folklore records made by the author and his colleagues and kept in the folklore archives of various scientific establishments. On the basis of the popular myths, beliefs, calendar signs, recitations of the book saints' lives and similar texts the author demonstrates components of a saint’s image formation in the popular culture and what attributes, characteristics and deeds of a saint are relevant for the folklore culture and what are irrelevant. Among such features the author points out the appearance and social status of a saint, his deeds and speech behavior, saint’s name and its interpretation etc.
In polemics with J. Sherrer I.V.Kondakov notes that Sherrer has offered a prejudiced interpretation of the present day Russia’s cultural development. The picture of scientific and social life in Russia painted by Sherrer is far away of the reality. The Russian culturology is not a single flow phenomenon and the Russian academic community is split in their outlook and in conceptual terms.

Myth at the Higher Education Institution’s Chair: the Fate of the «Silver Age» in the Historical Materialism

The author follows the critical line of Jutta Sherrer’s argument on the current textbooks on culturology. According to the author, the principal deficiency of these textbooks is the absolute break with the historic realities that are substituted with various contrived abstract concepts. Eventually that brings about disturbance of natural relationships among the real, the imaginable and the symbolic in the young generation’s eyes. The author demonstrates on the specific examples how poor is knowledge of the present day specialists in cultural studies (many of them were specialists in ‘historical materialism' and ‘scientific communism') of the historic realities, to what extent are unfounded their claims to generalizations of all kinds. The author thinks that, by and large, the current textbooks on cultural studies can play a role no less harmful tan the bygone courses of scientific communism.

On Culturology, the «Silver Age» and Jutta Scherrer’s Article

The author considers Jutta Scherrer’s article and responses to it produced by V. Bouldakov and I.Kondakov. Jutta Scherrer’s opinion that the present day culturology is a ‘servant-girl' and an ideological tool of the current Russian authorities is challenged. The idea that the present day culturology is creating a myth of the ‘Silver Age' (and, in the first place' of N.A.Ber-dyaev' philosophy) and these efforts are manifestations of the fundamentalist national self-identification is perceived rather critically. The author emphasizes the complex and totally non-fudamentalist origins of the Russian culturology (it developed under strong influence of the Tartu-Moscow school etc.) which contains trends that are very distant from totalitarianism and fundamentalism.

«The Scrag of the developed Socialism»

The article is devoted to M.A.Suslov, one of the leading politicians of the USSR. The author undertakes the first attempt to offer an answer to the question why this man war so attractive for the first leaders of the party and the state and why I.V.Stalin, N.S.Kruschev and L.I.Brezhnev who regarded such Suslov’s purely human traits as excessive formality of communication and the absolute lack of predisposition to backslapping and to foul language perhaps critically and even disdainfully nevertheless appreciated Suslov’s extensive and retentive memory, ability to grasp complicated international and ideological issues, diligence and efficiency, lack of exorbitant ambitions that brought to ruin carriers of many other colleagues in the top Soviet leadership. The article also deals with the issue to what extent the fame that Suslov was the embodiment of the mean aspects of the regime which fostered Suslov who tried his best in serving to the regime with no fear or reproach (this fame was ascribed to Suslov by the efforts of the liberal intellectuals) corresponds to the reality.

At What Square did Decembrists March out?

Analysis of historical sources demonstrates that in the Decembrists' time the square where they staged their uprising was called in three different ways: it was referred to as the Senate square, St. Isaac’s square and Petrovskaya square. Name ‘the Senate square' has never been the official name. However the historical facts are irrelevant for those who live with and by a myth of historical memory. The struggle for historical memory is a way of the struggle for power. The recent renaming of Decembrists' square in Saint-Petersburg is a vivid episode of this struggle. «Restoration» of historical name is a terminological special operation aimed at discrediting of the Decembrists' metaphor of uprising which the intransigent opposition tries on itself. The Confucian «correction of names» has brought about only emphasizing of the rebellious symbolism ingrained in the memorial place around the Copper Horseman. For a long time the Senate square is not just an urban place-name. It is one of the most important cross-points of national historical time and space. The time is stopped there. The Senate square mentioning within any context revitalizes the glorious day of 14 December 1825, in the Russian people’s memory.
The author examines two great epics of the Ancient world: the Epic of Gilgamesh and Iliad. Though both compositions were created on the mythological basis they differ from each other substantially by their pathos. Iliad is a hymn to war. Its battle scenes are replete with pictures of atrocities, mutilated corpses, streams of blood. The epic praises deeds of valor performed by kings whose meaning of the life was reduced to looting and protection of spoils of war. On the contrary the Epic of the Person, Who has seen everything, places friendship and cooperation on the high pedestal because friendship and cooperation are the guarantee of the humankind’s triumph over hostile elements. Sumerians' outlook and religious beliefs were in many ways alien to individualism. Hence a great difference between Sumerians' mentality and that of the Western civilization people. The Sumerians' world was wide and embraced natural being. It places nature and its vastness above the kindred, self-centered interest. That world balances the material and spiritual and raises the sensual above the rational which is usually brought in by act of an empowered individual’s will or by his striving but such persons are self-interested.

«Trustworthy Person»: Prince Sergei Troubetskoy as Conspirator and a Man of Service

The article deals with official performance of Prince Trubetskoy, a prominent figure in the secret societies of the 1820s. Analyzed is his trip to England in 1819, his service as aid-de-camp in the General Staff of the Russian army, as well as execution of military-police duties in his capacity of on-duty staff officer of the 4th Infantry Corps quartered in Kiev (1825). The conclusion is reached that his official activities were often associated with performance of special missions for the government. The experience gained in the service, Trubetskoy used to organize an anti-government plot, as well as to neutralize the enemies of this conspiracy.

«Anathema to Those Who Dare to Mutiny and Treason against Them». «Decembrists» Mythologeme in Writings of the 21th Century Orthodox Monarchist Publicists

The political rhetoric in Russia relies on two ‘principal' myths, myth of power and myth of opposition. In the myth of power the first person of the state is presented as an embodiment of Saint George crushing the serpent of the external enemies and their internal agents. In the opposition myth fighters against the establishment are presented as knights-Decembrists who took the unequal fight against the dragon of autocracy. When the myth of power is attached to the Decembrist rebels it transmutes into the counter-myth. The criticism is carried on from two standpoints that are hardly compatible. The first standpoint is the standpoint of pragmatists in power. Technologists of power understand that transfer of the Decembrists to the ranks of «bad» heroes of the black-and white historical memory is tantamount to elimination of extremely important symbolic foothold of all dissidents. So they, with no excessive enthusiasm, are engaged in re-writing of history within limits set out in the office circular. Political writers clustering around the various Orthodox organizations of national-patriotic orientation act in a quite different way. The Orthodox monarchists are disinterested romanticists of the isolationist authoritarian regime. They believe that the Russian people will begin in accordance with notions of Orthodoxy, autocracy and national spirit if the Decembrists are erased from the historical memory.

Sevastopol’s Defense 1854−1856 in the Memory Space

The Crimean War (1853−1856) was a contradictory event in the eyes of its participants, contemporaries and eyewitnesses. However, in the Russian cultural memory the events of this war became the national Myths, the heroic triumph, the holy war for the faith. Sevastopol became the element of the national pride and glory, the symbol of the sanctity. The fallen soldiers and officers became the saints, the men of the God. This article shows the influence of the Christianity images on the heroic discourse of the Crimean war and Sevastopol siege. Author focuses attention on the evangelical stories and Easter subjects, and images of a soldier, a seaman, a mother, a commander.

Intelligentsia-4: Past and Present

The author considers such multi-valued notion as «intelligentsia» and the corresponding phenomenon of intelligentsia as a specific phenomenon in the social, political and cultural history of the old Russia, the USSR and present-day Russia. The author demonstrates that ambiguity and vagueness, non-terminological character of this notion reflect the real historical situation in which intelligentsia has emerged not so much as an objective entity as an entity that is defined, in the first place, through self-awareness, self-identification and through idea of a special mission. The author considers reasons that determined erosion of intelligentsia in the meaning indicated in the post-Soviet Russia.

«Phantoms» and «Illusiones»: Devil’s Delusions in Texts and Iconography

The medieval Devil is not only the father of lies but also the father of illusions and expert in transformations assuming multiple masks (from insects and wild beasts to humans and angels) lengthy described in the Byzantine and Old Russian hagiography. The article explores the role of the illusionist transformations in the Old Russian demonological imagery and compares their functions in Eastern Orthodox and Western Catholic contexts. It focuses also on the methods the medieval artists used for visualizing the illusions described in the lives of saints and explores the inevitable gap between the textual and visual narrative strategies.

«Phantoms» and ««Illusiones»: Devil’s Delusions in Texts and Iconography (the end)

In the second part of the article the authors continue to explore the functions the concept of devilish illusions played in the Eastern Orthodox and Western Catholic religious imagaries. They analyze the methods the Medieval artists used to visualise the demonic transformations and explore the inevitable gap between the textual and visual narrative strategies.

Interpretation of «Moscow as the Third Rome» Theory in the Russian Culture of the Modern Time Revisited

The author deals with ‘Moscow as the Third Rome' theory and with its perception in the culture of the Modern time, first of all in the Peter the Great epoch. The author demonstrates inconsistence of opinion set forth by Yu. M. Lotman and B. A. Uspensky who suggested that theory of Philophei, a scribe from Pskov, influenced ideology of Peter I and, in particular, formation of Saint-Petersburg concept as the new Rome. The author adduces new arguments in favor of ‘Moscow as the Third Rome' theory interpretation in purely religious concept that belonged to philosophy of history and not to political or ideological dimensions.

Admiral Nakhimov in the National Memory

Formation of historical images is a complex process of information contained in sources of various kinds smelting in a peculiar ‘historiographic' smelter. Regime of this furnace functioning depends on changing political, scientific and cultural realities of a respective epoch. The historical portrait of Admiral Nakhimov we have was created by efforts of several generations of historians, publicists and politicians. Nakhimov’s life and activities have become a part of the Russian national historic myth where real events, their adequate and inadequate appraisals as well as political constructs topical for different epochs are interwoven. The author demonstrates how very different circumstances of different kinds have contributed to Nakhimov’s ascension to the very top of the national pantheon, how socio-cultural realities of the 2nd half of the 19th century and the early 21st centuries allowed this undoubtedly meritorious man to become a symbol of the Russian naval glory.

Folklore Versions of the «State Building»: Legends of the Power Making

The author investigates motives related to making of the state and state power as these motives were presented in the Slavic folklore legends and oral narratives. In the popular narrative tradition these motives are inseparably connected with the motive of faith choice. This motive is present in folklore legends of different chronological periods. Reflecting the plot borrowed form medieval literature sources the popular narratives emphasize the inseparable connection between choice of «right» faith with accession of the «right» potentate to power and consolidation of his power. In greater part of these cases such texts are results of literature sources adaptation for folklore, of textbooks, popular books and local studies retelling. Nevertheless such adaptations become assets of a local «oral history» and are transferred to «local legends» codes.

Vladimir Kalligraf – a Cristian Jew in the Church Hierarchy of Russian Empire

The article is devoted to one of the least investigated aspects of the Russian-Jewish mutual relations, i.e. to participation of Christian Jews in the Orthodox church life in the early Modern times Russian Empire. The author focuses on one figure, Vassily Krizhanovsky, a Jew who was baptized in 1716 and got name Vladimir Kalligraf as a monk. His biography is a unique source for study of such key issues as adaptation to and integration of neophytes of Jewish origin in the Russian socio-cultural environment, the Orthodox intellectuals' and representatives of the state power perception of such neophytes.

Young Andropov’s Career Agony. How Andropov «Washed» his Past off

Gennady Kostyrchenko, a prominent historian, challenges the authenticity of the official biography of Yuri Vladimirovich Andropov who was in charge of the KGB for many years and by the end of his life became a head of the USSR and the CPSU for a short period. Having scrupulously examined numerous historical evidence and documents, including documents from the state archive collections the author demonstrates in detail how this prominent political leader «corrected» his own personal data for the sake of a successful career and concealed his true social background that could be dangerous at those times. Andropov carried out this first special operation on creation of his own legend so neatly and fundamentally that it is still impossible to reveal his real past to the very end. It remains just to speculate about his real parents, his ethnic origin, and place of his birth.

Sheikh-Mansour: A Glance through the Mist of Ages. Reflections of a XXI Century Historian

The article revisits the image of Sheikh-Mansour one of the most enigmatic figures of the Chechen history, who by the close of the 18-th century, to quote John Baddeley, «dropped, as it were, from the clouds full grown, a warrior, preacher and prophet» to lead the resistance movement against Russia. The mere fact that Mansour gave an armed response to the advent of the Russians serves for many scholars an irresistible temptation to cast him both as a precursor of the 19-th century Caucasus War and a typological predecessor of the renowned Imam Shamyl. The author of this essay argues against what seems to him a far-fetched comparison between the two mountaineers' leaders belonging to different epochs and having different kinds of perception of their political, ideological, and military missions.

Technologies of Myth Creation: Notes on Publication of V.S.Grossman's Novel «Life and destiny»

The authors deal with the history of V.S.Grossman's novel «Life and destiny» publication considered in relation with the history of novel «For the right cause» edition. Relations of Grossman with I.V.Stalin, K.M.Simonov, A.A.Fedeev, A.T.Tvardovski, V.M.Kozhevnikov, A.Yu.Krivitski, S.I.Lipkin and with other coevals. The authors demonstrate that judgments of memoirists on the causes of «Life and destiny» sequestration are not confirmed with documents.

Sheikh-Mansour: A Glance through the Mist of Ages. Reflections of a XXI Century Historian (the continuance)

The article revisits the image of Sheikh-Mansour one of the most enigmatic figures of the Chechen history, who by the close of the 18-th century, to quote John Baddeley, «dropped, as it were, from the clouds full grown, a warrior, preacher and prophet» to lead the resistance movement against Russia. The mere fact that Mansour gave an armed response to the advent of the Russians serves for many scholars an irresistible temptation to cast him both as a precursor of the 19-th century Caucasus War and a typological predecessor of the renowned Imam Shamyl. The author of this essay argues against what seems to him a far-fetched comparison between the two mountaineers' leaders belonging to different epochs and having different kinds of perception of their political, ideological, and military missions.

The Chocolate Hare. The Intelligentsia’s Pushkin-Decembrist Myth at the Turn of Millennia

The Pushkin-Decembrist myth of the Soviet times, according to which the national poet did not find his way into the conspirator ranks solely due conspirators' careful attitude to Pushkin’s literary genius, is being subject to a comprehensive revision nowadays. The higher power and Orthodox monarchists who enjoy the power’s support are creating an image of a consistent and coherent admirer of the empire and the loyal son of the Church. Such person could have only short-term and superficial relations with Freemasonic Decembrists. The intelligentsia is also creating a new design of the myth, and this design provides no place to revolutionary moods. Liberal Pushkin does not share his more resolute friends' opinions about a coup d’etat and even more so their ideas about a regicidal dagger. Though Pushkin’s opinions diverged from opinions of his friends he had friendly feelings to them and called upon harsh but just Czar Nicholas to demonstrate mercy to them. In this interpretation interrelation of the Soviet myth characters is being changed. Pushkin is no longer a younger friend and a like-minded man of revolutionary Decembrists. Vice versa, now Decembrists are considered as an element of Pushkin’s environment. Indifference to self-giving Decembrists (as they were presented by A.I.Herzen and since his times had been seen as the archetype of the Russian intelligentsia) is an evidence of rapid estrangement of the current ‘creative class' from the tradition of a selfless life for the sake of the people’s enlightenment. Properly speaking, intelligentsia as a social group which unites people who are ready to sacrifice their time, money, freedom and even their lives for the sake of social interests and common good does not exist any longer. Heroic loners are unable to influence a demoralized majority of ‘very special people' (as A.I.Herzen defined them) of creative professions who are absorbed, along with ‘the trash' they despise so much, in the values of comfort.

Sheikh-Mansour: A Glance through the Mist of Ages. Reflections of a XXI Century Historian (the end)

The article revisits the image of Sheikh-Mansour one of the most enigmatic figures of the Chechen history, who by the close of the 18-th century, to quote John Baddeley, «dropped, as it were, from the clouds full grown, a warrior, preacher and prophet» to lead the resistance movement against Russia. The mere fact that Mansour gave an armed response to the advent of the Russians serves for many scholars an irresistible temptation to cast him both as a precursor of the 19-th century Caucasus War and a typological predecessor of the renowned Imam Shamyl. The author of this essay argues against what seems to him a far-fetched comparison between the two mountaineers' leaders belonging to different epochs and having different kinds of perception of their political, ideological, and military missions.
The article is devoted to one of the most original thinkers of the 17th century, d’yak (clerk) Ivan Timofeev (Semenov), the author of the «Chronicle», the book that had to provide an answer to the challenging question concerning the causes of the Time of troubles in the Russian state. The plan of the work came to Ivan Timofeev’s mind in Novgorod. This city lived through a long Swedish occupation and all vicissitudes of the state crisis that brought Russian on the brink of national disaster. It was precisely the time when the Metropolitan of Novgorod blessed Timofeev to write the Time of troubles chronicle which had to prevent oblivion of the Russian history tragic period when usurpers, «slave czars» and «Hellenes» of alien faith contributed to the supreme authority renown’s fall. Yet Timofeev produces not a dry chronicle of events but an excited lyrical monologue, confused, irregular in contexture, and does that by extremely difficult language and style. Timofeev failed to write a well-structured historical work. But he was the first of the Russian medieval authors who employed the traditional hagiographic general judgments and techniques of time and space organization for description of the civil history events. Also he was the first who began to consider a historian’s method.

The War of Monuments and the War Against Monuments

Destruction of monuments is one of the most vivid characteristics of revolutionary events. Raging crowds enthusiastically overturn bronze figures of hateful rulers and their servants and destroy other visible hostile symbols. During radical political transformations not only the power is seized in the center of a state and all over a country and not just control over armed forces and important facilities is established. A victory in symbolic dimension has an enormous significance because such victory exerts tremendous impact on people’s minds and hearts, mobilizes masses. A city belongs to a person whose monument stands at the central square of a city.

The Dark Ages of the Caucasus History

The author is well aware that by trying to immerse the reader into the murky ages of the Caucasus history he embarks upon a risky travel. The overwhelming part of academic knowledge on that subject-matter is doomed to remain either plausible hypothesis or dubious theories. To verify them with absolute correctness seems next to impossible. Nevertheless we are not going to give up hope to have the picture of the past more vivid and trustworthy. Our cautious optimism is based on the belief that historical sources, for all its impressive quantity, have not yet parted with many of its secrets.

«Without Decembrists there would be no Communists»: Lenin’s «First Generation» in the CPRF’s Myth Desiging

The author considers employment of memory about Decembrists in the CPRF propaganda, correction of Lenin’s concept of «three generations» in accordance with challenges of the time, i.e. «quest for ethnic roots», «struggle against terrorism».

The Formation of the Image of Petrograd-Leningrad at the Tour Literature of the 1920-s

This article analyzes the 1920s methodological guidelines to conduct tours of Petrograd-Leningrad. Key themes for the formation of the city’s image and the recommendations for sightseeing for the local and visiting tourists are identified. Author concludes that there were four main ideas of the excursion literature for Petrograd-Leningrad in the early Soviet period. Firstly, the City as the center of the revolutionary movement; secondly, historical significance of the former capital was also quite important; thirdly, the city was seen as a center of culture; and finally, Petrograd-Leningrad was presented in textbooks as the economic center of the country, and the large industrial city.

«Heh, Howard…»: Literary Story of Howard Fast’s Severance of Relations with the USSR

Making use of archive documents that previously were classified the author seeks to understand the background of complex conflict emerged in the second half of the 1950s between leaders of the USSR and the Soviet writers' union on one hand and Howard Fast, the prominent American writer, on the other hand. Trying to comprehend why Fast was the most published and the most highly paid foreign writer in the most cruel years of Stalin’s rule and why he, as if suddenly decided to put the end to his relations with the Communism and the USSR (and did that in the scandalous way) in the earlier years of Khrushchev’s liberalization the author presents his own documented version of this contradictory situation that does not lend itself to an univalent assessment.

«Lermontov's Great-Uncle»: History of One of the Ancient Artifacts from the Decembrist Myth

During the soviet era it was allowed to include historical figures in the research related to Decembrists. The cultural momentum maintains the use of the «acceptance» in the modern world. Such an inclusion by modern researchers of the D.A.Stolypin, the granduncle of the M.Yu.Lermontov to friends and associates of the P.I.Pestel is very noticeable. On the one hand, this «fact» is gain access to the authoritative biographical reference books; on the other hand, it is based on very dubious sources. In the process of «translation» the original «message» has acquired additional figurative details.

«Philistinism» and «Platitude» in Literary-Philosophical Controversies of the Modernists and the Positivists in the Early 20th Century

The author deals with the debate that unfolded in the early 20th century between the Modernists and the Positivists about notions of philistinism, platitude, and cynicism. It seems that these notions are uncontroversial: everybody is sure that the meaning of the terms is clear and definite. However this certainty is just an illusion. So a great discussion about understanding of these notions evolved in the early 20th century. And this debate demonstrated that the Russian society was deeply divided into two worlds: ideas of Individuality’s rights, ideas of Renaissance through supra-personal foundations of culture were proclaimed and affirmed in one world while another world adored the Humankind and worshiped it. What is higher, a Person or the Humankind? The future of Russia, to a considerable extent, depended on a decision of the question. The future of the 20th century, terrible and bloody, can be seen in these controversies.

«Philistinism» and «Platitude» in Literary-Philosophical Controversies of the Modernists and the Positivists in the Early 20th Century (the end)

Responses and comments to Gorki’s letter with the demand to knock already prepared stage play on F.M.Dostoevski's novel «Demons» off the Moscow Art Theater’s repertoire expressed the modernist attitude to infringement of personal freedom in the space of culture. Virtually everybody who responded to the situation censured Gorki for violence against freedom of creativity. However, the revolutionary young people who acted in the open discussions of Gorki’s letter, rather supported than condemned the writer. In his answer to critics Gorki himself did not admit any fault and accused his opponents of «philistinism», «cynicism» and «platitude». The article deals with the deep-seated foundations of differences in explanations of these concepts. The differences resulted from the polar perceptions of Russia’s progress and Russia’s future.

«Substitute» Elements in Religious Practices (Based on Recollections of GULAG Prisoners in the 1920-s — the 1940s)

The article deals with the problem of religious practices adaptation to conditions of the Soviet imprisonment and prison camp detention in the 1920s — the 1940s. Christian religious practices are taken as example. Actions, items, spaces, texts of religious life mutated under impact of interdictory conditions: religious procedures and rites were simplified and reduced down to substitution of action with narrative about action; items of religious attributes were made of make-shift materials and divided into parts; each part began to symbolize the whole or these parts were excluded altogether; lack of special spaces for religious rites and actions led to their conduct virtually in any point of space accessible to prisoners.

Замысел горбачевской «перестройки». Попытки реконструкции

В статье рассмотрены вопросы, связанные с выявлением замысла «перестройки» в СССР 1985–1991 гг. в источниках и историографии. Показана актуальность темы для изучения современной истории России. Обозначены основные подходы к проблеме, представлена аргументация их сторонников. Сделан вывод, что острота дискуссий по проблеме не утихает, а подходы исследователей и участников событий сохраняют полярность. Основной нерв дискуссии связан с вопросом о наличии самого плана «перестройки» и его содержании. В последнем случае исследователи расходятся во мнениях, был ли этот план изначально направлен на разрушение советского строя или такой результат стал следствием объективных процессов. В статье представлены предложения по методологии исследования проблемы, включая методы критики исторических источников.

XX съезд КПСС: чехословацкое эхо (1956 год)

В статье дается общая краткая характеристика ХХ съезда КПСС, и прежде всего «секретного» доклада Н.С.Хрущева о культе личности и его последствиях, значения решений съезда по этому вопросу для страны и мира, влияния на состояние и развитие мирового коммунистического движения. Показано, как освещалась проблема в российской историографии в последние четверть века. Рассмотрено восприятие решений ХХ съезда КПСС Коммунистической партией Чехословакии, стоявшей у руля правления страной и чехословацким обществом. Прослежена эволюция взглядов руководства КПЧ в течение 1956 г. на то, как следует претворять в жизнь решения ХХ съезда КПСС о культе личности Сталина, чтобы не поколебать основы существующего в Чехословакии социалистического строя, построенного по советской модели. Выявлены внутренние и внешние факторы, приведшие в конце 1956 г. к возвращению властей Чехословакии к политике «твердой руки».

Первая Государственная дума как «зеркало русской революции». К 110-летию рождения и гибели

Полтора десятилетия назад автору настоящей статьи уже приходилось обращаться к проблемам исторической судьбы Первой Государственной думы императорской России. Их социальная острота в тех условиях напрямую коррелировалась с волновавшими все общество процессами разработки принципов земельной реформы в Российской Федерации, утверждения Земельного кодекса РФ (2001) и закона «Об обороте земель сельскохозяйственного назначения» (2002). Прошедшее с тех пор время не снизило исследовательский и социально-практический интерес к углубленному познанию вопросов становления первого в истории страны представительного учреждения с законодательными функциями, дерзко заявившего свои права на первичность и независимость от своеволия монарха и диктата подчиненной ему исполнительной власти. Почему все-таки первый блин оказался комом? Почему он не ознаменовал начало серьезного дискурса власти и общества, в том числе и в первую очередь по самому животрепещущему вопросу – вопросу о земле? Проблеме актуальной, более того – злободневной по сей день. Ибо время не способно «отменить» бесспорную, абсолютную справедливость тезиса П.А.Столыпина: «Земля – это залог нашей силы в будущем, земля – это Россия».

Зигзаги судьбы: профессор А.В.Флоровский и его советские коллеги

В настоящей статье, первой из серии, посвященной русскому историку А.В.Флоровскому, рассказывается о попытках ученого установить научные связи с советскими коллегами в послевоенные годы. Его движущим мотивом был интерес к изучению эпохи Петра Великого. В статье рассказывается о коммуникациях А.В.Флоровского с А.И.Андреевым и его научной группой, которая занималась изданием «Писем и бумаг императора Петра Великого». Показано, как и в научные планы, и в судьбы людей вмешивается политика. В СССР разгораются идеологические кампании. Коллеги А.В.Флоровского оказываются под огнем критики.

«Конструируя советское»: событие и память постсоветского субъекта (по дневникам Светланы Вольской)

Статья посвящена постсоветскому субъекту и его памяти. Основываясь на дневниках Светланы Вольской, сторонницы Ельцина в 1991 году и защитницы Верховного Совета в 1993 году, автор исследует ее идеологическую и политическую эволюцию. Используя подход Мориса Хальбвакса к социальной памяти и философию События Аллена Бадью, автор предполагает, что переопределяя собственные воспоминания о «советском» этапе своей жизни, Светлана в 1993–1996 годах таким образом формировала актуальную политическую позицию. Говоря более абстрактно, реинтерпретация исторических событий заменяет постсоветскому субъекту политическую и социальную рефлексию сегодняшнего дня.

Зигзаги судьбы: профессор А.В.Флоровский и его советские коллеги (продолжение)

В статье рассказывается, как «железный занавес» прервал контакты А.В.Флоровского с советскими коллегами. Он смог возобновить их только в годы хрущевской «оттепели». В 1950-е гг. историк познакомился по переписке с А.А.Новосельским, Б.Б.Кафенгаузом и другими советскими коллегами. Одной из главных тем их общения становится подготовка издания «Писем и бумаг императора Петра Великого». В статье анализируются историографические и источниковедческие советы А.В.Флоровского относительно этого издания.

Лиля Брик. В жерновах мифа о Маяковском

Гюстав Флобер утверждал: «Не прикасайтесь к идолам... их позолота остается у вас на пальцах». Но этому предупреждению не вняла главная героиня этой статьи – возлюбленная поэта Владимира Маяковского Лиля Брик, которая, дабы спасти от забвения его творческое наследие, обратилась в 1935 г. за помощью к живому советскому кумиру – Сталину, объявившему тогда Маяковского «лучшим и талантливейшим поэтом нашей советской эпохи». Однако Лиля Брик недолго грелась в лучах этого пропагандистского мифа. Уже с середины 1950-х гг. она превратилась в объект организуемых сверху перманентных пропагандистских проработок: будучи космополиткой по мировоззрению и сексуально раскрепощенной в личной жизни, да к тому же еще и еврейкой, Брик явно не вписывалась в официальный образ верной и идейно выдержанной подруги революционного пролетарского поэта. О том, как партчиновники и ангажированные ими литературоведы пытались задним числом переписать историю любви Владимира Маяковского и Лили Брик, превращая последнюю в роковую женщину, виновную в смерти поэта, и рассказывается в данной статье.

Зигзаги судьбы: профессор А.В.Флоровский и его советские коллеги (окончание)

В заключительной статье серии рассказывается о развитии научных контактов А.В.Флоровского с советскими историками в конце 1950-х – 1960-х гг. Особое внимание уделено его общению с Е.П.Подъяпольской, которая взяла на себя редактирование «Писем и бумаг императора Петра Великого». Освещается поездка А.В.Флоровского в СССР в 1967 г. В статье приводятся аргументы, согласно которым закрытость советской науки стала одной из причин, тормозивших изучение петровской темы. В заключении осмысляется специфика научных контактов А.В.Флоровского.

«Повесть о Дракуле» и представления о добродетельном и «злом» государе в древнерусской книжности

В статье рассматривается один из интереснейших памятников литературы и общественной мысли Древней Руси XV в. – «Повесть о Дракуле». Обыкновенно исследователи интерпретируют это произведение как апологию сильной власти и как оправдание репрессий в интересах государства и общественного благополучия. Оценку главного героя, валашского (румынского) господаря Дракулы, принято считать неоднозначной: Дракула соединяет в себе черты деспота и садистскую жестокость с храбростью, справедливостью и государственной мудростью. В статье доказывается, что оценка главного героя произведения исключительно негативная, а его методы управления представлены не только как греховные, но и как вредоносные. В идейном плане «Повесть о Дракуле» вписывается в древнерусскую традицию и не имеет ничего общего с социально-политическими представлениями таких апологетов «грозной» власти, как публицист Иван Пересветов и царь Иван IV. Оригинальность «Повести» заключается не в авторской позиции, а в средствах ее выражения: автор побуждает читателей самих понять, почему Дракула – деспот, служащий дьяволу.

«Повесть о Дракуле» и представления о добродетельном и «злом» государе в древнерусской книжности (окончание)

В статье рассматривается один из интереснейших памятников литературы и общественной мысли Древней Руси XV в. – «Повесть о Дракуле». Обыкновенно исследователи интерпретируют это произведение как апологию сильной власти и как оправдание репрессий в интересах государства и общественного благополучия. Оценку главного героя, валашского (румынского) господаря Дракулы, принято считать неоднозначной: Дракула соединяет в себе черты деспота и садистскую жестокость с храбростью, справедливостью и государственной мудростью. В статье доказывается, что оценка главного героя произведения исключительно негативная, а его методы управления представлены не только как греховные, но и как вредоносные. В идейном плане «Повесть о Дракуле» вписывается в древнерусскую традицию и не имеет ничего общего с социально-политическими представлениями таких апологетов «грозной» власти, как публицист Иван Пересветов и царь Иван IV. Оригинальность «Повести» заключается не в авторской позиции, а в средствах ее выражения: автор побуждает читателей самих понять, почему Дракула – деспот, служащий дьяволу.

О финансовой стороне издания газеты «Правда» (март–май 1917 г.)

Статья посвящена проблеме финансирования газеты «Правда» после возобновления ее издания в марте 1917 г. Анализируются доходная и расходная части бюджета газеты за март–май 1917 г., приводятся сведения о финансовых источниках приобретения большевиками собственной типографии в издательстве «Труд».

Столица как репрезентация империи и мифа о «самодержце-реформаторе»

На основе анализа немецкой литературы 30–40-х гг. XIX в. автор рассматривает процесс формирования «Петербургского» нарратива в контексте консервативного дискурса о России как амбивалентный конструкт, основанный на личных впечатлениях очевидцев, с одной стороны, и на политических мифах и идеологемах, с другой.

«Сказание о призвании варягов»: в поисках «исторического ядра»

В статье исследуется знаменитая летописная легенда о призвании варяжских князей. Автор оспаривает вывод ряда исследователей о том, что летописное сказание основывается на юридическом акте (договоре). Приводятся аргументы в пользу положения об исключительно фольклорном происхождении сказания.

«Сказание о призвании варягов»: факты, гипотезы, домыслы

В статье рассматриваются различные интерпретации летописного сказания о призвании варягов, в частности концепция Е.А.Мельниковой и В.Я.Петрухина, доказывающих, что в сказании сохранились сведения о договоре, заключенном Рюриком с призвавшими его народами. Также анализируется критика «договорной» гипотезы различными исследователями. Показано, что «договорная» гипотеза опирается на ряд весомых аргументов, однако не лишена некоторых уязвимых мест. Бесспорное признание реальности договора Рюрика с местным населением или отрицание его существования затруднительно из-за отсутствия необходимых данных.

Варварский мир глазами античных авторов (к вопросу об особенностях взаимовосприятия)

Тема, вынесенная в заголовок статьи, как предмет исследования принадлежит античному времени. По крайней мере, формально. Но, поскольку автор поднимает проблему взаимовлияния разных по уровню и содержанию культур (античной и варварской), это приобретает актуальность в свете современных дискуссий о масштабах и пределах негативных последствий того феномена, который вот уже четверть века именуется «столкновением цивилизаций».

«Левша» Н.С.Лескова и русская национальная мифология

В статье анализируется рассказ Н.С.Лескова «Левша». Показано, что лесковский рассказ обладает во многом амбивалентной семантикой и что авторская оценка главного героя и России не может быть признана как безусловно позитивной, так и абсолютно отрицательной. Своеобразие трактовки Лесковым мотива противостояния русских и англичан и оппозиции Россия – Англия объясняется полемикой автора с русской национальной мифологией. Доказывается, что идеологическими подтекстами для рассказа являются теория официальной народности и славянофильство, отношение автора к которым окрашено иронией. «Левша» создавался как предостережение против национального самодовольства и чванства, для которых такие идеологические построения могут явиться питательной почвой.

Modernist Novels of the Early 20 th Century: About Love... or About Violence?

Love novels by Mark Krinitski (1874–1952), a bright representative of the Russian Modernism, in the Soviet times were designated as dime fiction that were deprived of any sense but entertainment. The post-Soviet literary historians inherited such characterizations uncritically. Meanwhile these books had no trashy content from the start. For Krinitski narrated not only about love, not about conjugal fidelity or infidelity, not about preservation of family and household pillars but about lack of individual freedom in man-female relationships, about love in which the patrimonial elements that stifle the love. These novels put philosophical issues of the ultimate freedom and therefore all love stories in one or another way relate not only the high feelings but the violence over these feelings. The strong man cult was a peculiar Modernist cult. However, this speculative cult was just a project of the family and society transformation and their conversion to new societal grounds. The strong man cult made a call for the man who had become the initiator of love liberation from the oppression of custom and patrimonial mode of life.

Refuge from Fears and Projection of Hopes. Image of Russia as an element of the conservative «style of thinking» in Germany in the second quarter of the XIX century

Based on analysis of German conservative literature about Russia, as part of the political discussions in Germany in the second quarter of the 19th century, the paper discusses these polemic works as an example of a conservative "thinking style" that shaped the worldview of its bearers and attitudes towards Russia.

«The Last Hope of Europe». Russia in German Journalism of the First Quarter of the XIX Century: Literary-Philosophical Discourse

In the first quarter of the 19th century for the first time for all history of interaction between Russia and Europe, Russia’s positive perception began to acquire a mass character in Germany regardless of political preferences of most of Germans. On the basis of the analysis of German artistic and philosophical writings on Russia, an attempt is made to trace how during a period of the sharpest political crisis the process of transformation of the image of Russia in German public opinion from the «Russian threat» complex to the «last hope of Europe» began, laying down trends that were still relevant in subsequent years.

Christians Rakovsky in the Revolutionary Events in Ukraine (1918–1923): the Search for Modern Scientific Accents

The article attempts to briefly characterize and objectively assess the role of the prominent figure in the international revolutionary movement, H.G.Rakovsky, in the development of social processes in Ukraine during the Civil War and the time of the head of the Soviet government of the republic on the basis of an analysis of historical facts and documents. In the last decades, this page of his life receives controversial lighting.
keywords: Ukraine; revolution; Civil War; USSR; Council of People's Commissars; KP (b) U; national question; Ukrainian communism; USSR; federation.

Between “Great Fear” and “Great Hope”. Russia in the Perception of the German Elite Before and During the Patriotic War of 1812: National-Patriotic Discourse

On the basis of the analysis of private and journalistic written sources of character, an attempt is made to trace the transformation of the image of Russia in the national-patriotic discourse of Germany during the anti-Napoleonic wars, based on the changes in the attitude to the Russian empire among the most prominent representatives of Prussia’s military, political and intellectual elite who had a great influence on formation of public opinion in the German lands.
keywords: Russia; Germany; Prussia; anti-French coalitions; Alexander I; Napoleon; national liberation movement; Patriotic war of 1812.

Culture, Revolution, War. The “Cultural Dimension” of the Crisis of 1917–1922 in Modern Russian Historiography

This work deals with contemporary historiographic rethinking (both in Russia and abroad) of the cultural context of war-revolutionary crises in Russia, 1917–1922. This problematic field helps to shape the answer to the main question of the topic: why did the “red project” turned out to be more successful, than the “white” one, and what was the role of cultural factors, demands and collisions in this process. The crush of traditional values system; formation of Bolshevik’s new sacrality; reality and utopia of democratic alternative in Russian revolution; the causes of weakness of the liberal politics; conspirology and mythology of Bolshevik’s upheaval; the discussion on the cultural essence of Bolshevism; mutual responsibility of society towards culture and culture towards society in the turning moment of Russian history – these are the main topics of the world’s historical science of this problematic sphere.
keywords: Revolution in Russia; 1917, the Civil War in Russia, 1917–1922; modern historiography of the revolution and the Civil War in Russia; Bolshevism as a political-cultural phenomenon, Russian liberalism; conspirology and mythology of Bolshevik’s revolution Russian culture in 1917–1922.

Christians Rakovsky in the Revolutionary Events in Ukraine (1918–1923): the Search for Modern Scientific Accents (the end)

Proposed publication covers activities of the Soviet Ukraine Government Chairman H.G.Rakovsky at final stage of Civil War and in the first two and a half years of peaceful socialist construction, assesses his position and role in the unification movement for USSR creation.
keywords: Ukraine; Civil War; USSR; Council of People's Commissars; KP (b) U; national question; Ukrainian communism; USSR; autonomy; confederalism; federation.