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scientific journal
RUSSIA XXI

< Issue No 5 from 2012 yr. >

Who will Fix the Situation? On the Eve of the Civilizational Disaster

The author deals with the extremely difficult situation that has emerged in the contemporary Russian domestic policy. Nonfeasance of authorities and intelligentsia, growth of protest moods and spirits, religious extremism that lifts its head up, revitalization of inland subversive forces — all that create pre-conditions for collapse of the Russian Federation. The danger is quite real. In this moment one has to understand what forces it is necessary to rely on in order to save the country that is sliding to the social and economic abyss. The role of the national intelligentsia is as great as it had never been earlier because intelligentsia has to turn the protest in a positive direction and to prevent the ultimate disaster.

Education in the Present Day Russia: Ascending the Descending Stairway? (Traits to the Portrait of our Reforms)

The article deals with strategies of the Russian education. The focus is made on these strategies adequacy to the real challenges Russia confronts now. The inevitable multiple and relative character of crises in education in the environment of the present day dynamics of social history is emphasized. The author concludes that prevailing in Russia nowadays strategies of education development are haphazard, non-systemic and that ideas and practices of the 1990s radical Liberalism dominate in these strategies due to the inertia. The issue of necessity to correct strategies of the Russian Federation education development, with real peculiarities of the current stage of the Russian civilization transformation including acute demand to formation of the Russian national identity taken into due account.

«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.

«Socialism» American Style. On the Creation of the Tennessee Valley Authority

Based on rich material the article is the first comprehensive history of the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA) written by the Russian historian. It is a telling case study of the TVA creation in 1933 and its organizational evolution from the New Deal years to the final stage of the World War II. The author traces the central issue of the New Deal’s most dramatic project aimed to expand the governmental control over the economy and natural resources through public power, regional planning and new intellectual ideas for the transformation the New South area. President Roosevelt and the leading personalities in the board of directors of TVA (and among them David E. Lilienthal) had four principal goals. The first was to provide cheap electricity to homes and farms. The second was to provide jobs for unemployed. The third was to save from devastation the large territory of the depressed region in the South. And there was a fourth more ephemeral goal: that through public power, governmental ownership of some other services and publicly-owned distributorship could be created a model for a new and more prosperous form of society. Some contemporaries deeply believed that TVA was a big step to American sort of socialism.

The Fatherland’s Sons: On Shaping of the Decembrist Ideology

The article is devoted to study of social and political views common to members of the Russian officers corpus. Officers' attitude toward the Emperor and peasants is investigated on the basis of the Fatherland and the Fatherland’s son notions semantics analysis. Change of these views in the post-war period (1814−1825) is traced. It is demonstrated that under the impact of wars waged in 1812−1814 this postulate transformed: the Emperor quitted to be associated with a son of the Fatherland while, on the contrary, officers started to perceive peasants as sons of the Fatherland. It is this transformation where origins of the Decembrist ideology are discovered.

Images of the French Revolution in the 19th Century Russian Social and Political Thought

There are many testimonies that allow us to speak of emotional and deep perception of the French revolution events by several generations of Russian people. Values, system of images and symbols begot by the French revolution served as a «guide» of a kind to the future that dazzled and at the same time scared. Having put a clear-cut line between conservatives and radicals discussions on the optimal way of the West European norms adoption brought about formation of the «Russian idea» and contention that Russia needed a peculiar civilization. One line expressed itself in the Orthodox and monarchic ideal where the Enlightenment principles were connected with motives of national identity (formula «Liberty, Equality, Brotherhood» was replaced with triad «Orthodoxy, Autocracy, national authenticity»). The other line was an alloy of the European Socialism and ideals of communality that were focused on the ancient communal way of life. The intelligentsia associated the way to the bright future with results of its own activity. The Russian people just had to accept the results of choice made by the intelligentsia.

Origination of Double Standards in the Soviet Ideology

While Stalin was alive only he could be equal to the truth and only he could know the truth. Upon his death an ideological corporation emerged and this corporation took it upon itself to exercise control over the truth. Yet every functionary authorized to trace congruence of «practice» and «theory» knew that his functions of control were limited. The ideological apparatus of the Party inherited monopoly rights to the truth as a corporate heir. It was precisely the corporation which started to claim to the knowledge belonged to the caste. This knowledge released «the elected few» of unnecessary formalities. Answers to citizens concocted at the «Kommunist» journal were not different from answers produced under Stalin. However discussions within the editorial board (minutes started to be composed since January, 1954) are characterized by an important distinction: name of Stalin was nearly absent in these discussions. N.S.Khruschev in his report to the CPSU 20th Congress uncovered the terrible truth about the cult of Stalin’s personality to the communists yet still clung to the deep-seated double standards: his report was a «secret» one and its content was meant for «our crowd».