Abstracts 2, 2013

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Russian Polity

Yuri Plusnin

LATENT SOCIAL STRESS IN RUSSIAN SOCIETY

Keywords:  latent socialstress, sentiment, disconnection, value shift, attitude towards reforms, protest intentions

The article introduces the concept of latent (hidden) socialstress as the most important and longest phase of the social tension, identifies and describes its main components. Having considered the key indicators of social tension and their interdependence, Yu.Plusnin refers to the analysis of the level of the latent social stress in the Russian province, revealing its dynamics over the period from 1992 to 2010, and identifies socio-professional and age groups, the activity of which is to the largest extent responsible for the development of destructive processes in society.

DOI: 10.30570/2078-5089-2013-69-2-6-38


Ivan Grigoriev

REASONS FOR FIRST CONSTITUTIONAL JUSTICE PROJECT FAILURE IN POST-SOVIET RUSSIA

Keywords: Constitutional Court, regime transformations, post-communism

The article is devoted to the analysis of the first constitutional justice project in the post-Soviet Russia. Resting upon the theory that links institutional characteristics of the Constitutional Court and its relationship with the government, with the configuration of elites initiating the formation of this body and the prospects of them holding grip onto power, I.Grigoryev considers a set of hypothetical scenarios of constitutional justice formation and shows that Russia failed to implement any of them. According to his assessment, such a turn of events can be explained by the fact that the Russian Constitutional Court was established even before the emergence of the political landscape of a new Russia. Its creation was driven by the desire to strengthen the national as opposed to the Union level of government rather than an aspiration to introduce an impartial arbiter into politics, which provoked the elites’ suboptimal moves that reached catastrophic proportions resulting in the collapse of the whole project.

DOI: 10.30570/2078-5089-2013-69-2-39-49

Russian regions

Leonid Bliakher

ARE SPONTANEOUS ORDER AND POLICE STATE RECONCILABLE? State versus local community in small towns of the Russian Far East

Keywords: territorial community, spontaneous order, police state, modernization, social network, the Far East

The article discusses versions of spontaneous order that emerged in the small towns of the Far East against the background of the state control weakening, types of confrontation arising from the “return” of the dirigiste state as well as the conditions under which such confrontation might end up with the interests reconciliation. It is shown that although state and local communities interests are rarely the same, such a situation does not necessarily produce conflict. The decisive factor here is an institutional opportunity to articulate community specialty and interests that in its turn hinges upon the availability of a legal and legitimate “negotiator” as well as space for negotiations. However, the long-term alignment of interests is hindered by inarticulate interests of the state itself. Such circumstances make it extremely difficult to avoid the perception of the state version of the public weal as a form of structural violence.

DOI: 10.30570/2078-5089-2013-69-2-50-73


Alexander Salagaev, Sergey Sergeev

REGIONAL ELITE OF REPUBLIC OF TATARSTAN: STRUCTURE AND EVOLUTION

Keywords: ruling elite, regional elite, sub-elite group, Tatarstan

The paper analyzes the structure and evolution of the political elite of Tatarstan. According to the authors’ assessment, the regional elite includes groups varying in their recruitment character that can fight with each other and at the same time step up as a united front against the federal center. In the face of the central government pressure, it managed to preserve its own mechanisms of self-reproduction blocking appointees from outside to any significant positions, but still wielded the most-favored treatment in obtaining federal funding. Bringing back regional governors’ elections opens up novel prospects for the Republic sub-elite groups leaders, but it is only real competition between the ruling and counter-elite that can improve qualification and moral level of regional elite.

DOI: 10.30570/2078-5089-2013-69-2-74-85

Ideologies

Sergey Allenov

IMAGE OF RUSSIA AND FORMATION OF POLITICAL WORLDVIEW OF YOUNG JOSEPH GOEBBELS Russia, you are a hope of the dying world! (19231924)

Keywords: Goebbels, Russia, Dostoevsky, socialism, Christianity, Nazism

The article discusses the development of Goebbels’ Russophile views emerged from his fascination with the Russian literature, especially the works by F.Dostoevsky. Relying on the diaries of the future Nazi propaganda chief, S.Allenov traces the transformation of Goebbels’ ideas borrowed from the religious and ethical preach of Dostoevsky's “Christian socialism” into the political ideology of national socialism demonstrating the pattern of similarity between the system of masses manipulation constructed by Goebbels thereafter with the utopias that were well-known to him, i.e. Shigalevschina and the Grand Inquisitor’s Kingdom. According to the author’s conclusion, the young Goebbels’ initial hatred for the liberal West facilitated not only his perception of Russia’s image borrowed from the literature as an antipode of the “demising” Europe, but also his comprehension in the Germanized form of the Russian myth about the spiritually revived people that is soldered together by the bonds of the highest order and destined for the world leadership.

DOI: 10.30570/2078-5089-2013-69-2-86-106

Antithesis

Roman Ruvinsky

DILEMMAS OF STATEHOOD AND NEW WAR OF ALL AGAINST ALL

Keywords:  state, crisis, natural state, law and order, sovereignty

The article is devoted to the assessment of nation-state changing position under the crisis conditions of the present world order. Relying upon the modern interpretation of T.Hobbes’ ideas, R.Ruvinsky poses a question on whether today state is quite an efficient tool that is able to prevent society from sliding into the war of all against all. The main emphasis is placed on the dilemma regarding state usage of the emergency response measures to tackle challenges of modernity (spread of new information technologies and weapons of mass destruction, international terrorism, globalization, economic crisis). The author draws an ambiguous conclusion: noting the inefficiency of prohibitive and repressive policies, he nevertheless points to the need for nation-states to fight for sovereignty, economic independence and rule of domestic law.

DOI: 10.30570/2078-5089-2013-69-2-107-118


Leonid Fishman

IS SPIRITUALITY OF HELP TO RUSSIAN CAPITALISM?

Keywords: social capital, spirituality, capitalism, religion, cultural heritage, peripherality

The article considers the recent Russian talks about the need for the “spirituality” revival from the “social capital” conception viewpoint. It is shown that expatiations about spirituality constitute a self-delusion spurred by a desire to at least somehow regulate the process of industrial society disintegration and objective reality of the peripheral capitalism with its “raw authoritarianism” and “underdevelopment”. According to L.Fishman, the current situation is characterized by the destruction of opportunities to produce “social capital of the future” and objective impossibility to reproduce “social capital of the past” that would help to retain the remnants of the industrial society or to build capitalism at least similar to that in the first half of the 20th century.

DOI: 10.30570/2078-5089-2013-69-2-119-128

Historical Retrospective: Reflections and Hypotheses

Vasily Shishkov

SOVIET UNION POLICY AS IMPERIAL PROJECT

Keywords: empire, Soviet Union, Russian Empire, modernization, nationalism, ideology

The article presents an attempt of the analysis of the Soviet Union policy in comparison to the Russian Empire. The author proposes and justifies an argument that the Soviet Union used to be a peculiar type of the empire. The comparative analysis of the Soviet Union and the Russian Empire is conducted on the basis of three parameters that are of major significance for the 20th century imperial formations: modernization, nationalism and ideology. According to the author’s conclusion, despite the fact that the Soviet Union achieved remarkable success in fulfilling its geopolitical aspirations, it failed to efficiently solve the problems that played a decisive role in determining the empire’s fate. The global crisis allowed the Soviet Union to gain the status of superpower, but after having proved incapable of bearing the imperial burden under the global confrontation with the U.S. it collapsed due to the failure of the imperial policy.

DOI: 10.30570/2078-5089-2013-69-2-129-141


Irina Sokhan, Dmitry Goncharov

SOCIO-CULTURAL ENGINEERING OF TOTALITARIANISM: SOVIET GASTRONOMIC PROJECT

Keywords: utopia, totalitarianism, atomization, Soviet gastronomic project

The paper attempts to explore the everyday gastronomic practices prevailing in the Soviet Russia as a tool providing for the socio-cultural and institutional support for the system of totalitarian social and political mobilization. On the basis of the thorough analysis of the Soviet “gastronomic project” the authors show that although many components of the project (idea of universal solidarity, change of women social status, etc.) might have looked attractive for a representative of the early industrial society, its historical task was different – it was intended to create a social mechanism for isolating an individual from other equal actors, depriving him/her of the prospect of personal autonomy and subordinating him/her to the vertical structures of totalitarian control.

DOI: 10.30570/2078-5089-2013-69-2-142-155


Gubernatorial Readings

MODERN MUNICIPALITY: MANUFACTURE OF SERVICES OR PLATFORM FOR CIVIL SOCIETY? Twelfth Gubernatorial Readings. Tyumen, March 19th, 2013

Keywords: local self-government, normative foundation, social reality, Tyumen region

The material published here is a report on the twelfth Gubernatorial Readings held in Tyumen, March 19th, 2013, under the framework of the joint project conducted by the journal Politeia and the administration of Tyumen region with the topic of the readings being position, role and functions of local self-government institution in modern society and a lecturer – Doctor Emil Markwart, President of the European Club of Experts in Local Self-Government, Chief Consultant at Consulting Company Ost-Euro GmbH, Deputy Dean of Department of Municipal Government at Perm Institute of Municipal Government.

DOI: 10.30570/2078-5089-2013-69-2-156-176

Book Review

Leonid Polyakov

RUSSIAN POLICY IN LIGHT OF CONSTITUTION (Fundamentals of Constitutional Order in Russia: Twenty Years of Development / Ed. by A.N.Medushevsky. M.: Institute of Law and Public Policy, 2013)

Keywords: Constitution, government form, political regime, political practice, constitutional reform

In his review of the monograph L.Polyakov attributes its most important advantages to the fact that the authors avoided following the beaten path where the discussion (and often – criticism) of the current Constitution serves as a mere pretext to promote one’s own constitutional project. According to Polyakov, the rigorous analytical work that the authors performed in order to identify the “spirit and letter” of the current Constitution and compare them with the political practice of the past two decades is invaluable for all contributing authors followed a unified research scheme, the logic of which is sufficiently clear and transparent (although sometimes controversial).

DOI: 10.30570/2078-5089-2013-69-2-177-189


Academia

THIRD INTERNATIONAL SOCIOLOGICAL SCIENTIFIC-PRACTICAL CONFERENCE CONTINUING GRUSHIN Event overview

Keywords:  international scientific-practical conference, Grushin, VCIOM, public opinion

The Third International Sociological Scientific-Practical Conference “Continuing Grushin” took place in Moscow, February 28th – March 1st at the initiative of the Russian Public Opinion Research Center and with the participation of the Fund for Public Opinion Studies Promotion Vox Populi and the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration. The material published here contains an overview of main events held during the conference.

DOI: 10.30570/2078-5089-2013-69-2-190-194