№ 3, 2010
The article considers the prospects of Russia’s transition towards the innovational type of development. Apart from stating that the main obstacle to modernization of a country is conservatism and stagnancy within the socio-political practices, Yu.Krasin argues that in Russia there are certain opportunities for the innovational type of modernization. He supposes that nowadays Russia finds herself in a somewhat “reformational situation” encouraging the ruling elite to think about how to change the method of governing. The pressure coming from the plethora of challenges and threats that cannot be fought by the autocratic methods leads to fissures and niches in the political system broadening its public sphere. Krasin states that these looming tendencies can be viewed as a hint at the stepwise democratic evolution of the political system and the emergence of new democratic alternatives that are capable of altering the authoritarian vector of the federal policy.
№ 2, 2010
Yu.Krasin argues that one of the main advantages of the reviewed monograph is its consistent and compelling argumentation of the idea of civil society and therefore democracy being of polyvariant nature and their dependence on the historical experience of the Western and Eastern countries. Although expressing some extent of disagreement with the author of the book, Krasin evaluates the latter as a fundamental work on the problems of civil society that elucidates difficulties of the development of democracy in the modern world. According to him, everyone who is interested in the acute issues of democracy and civil society should take a look at it.
№ 1, 2009
On 12 November 2008 the Institute of Sociology of the Russian Academy of Sciences held a round table discussion that analyzed the reasons and possible social and political consequences of the world economic crisis. Despite the fact that crisis processes only started gaining grounds when the discussion was held, all the participants agreed that this crisis in terms of its scale could be compared to the Great Depression of 1929–1933. At the same time, the statements underlined that, unlike the Great Depression that only affected capitalist countries with high and medium levels of development, this crisis has right away become worldwide not metaphorically, but literally. The discussion also drew attention to the crisis’s resistibility in relation to the regulating impulses that earlier allowed to deal with crisis phenomena. Participants at the round table concluded that, unless efficient anti-crisis tools are found, the crisis might create serious difficulties for the acting government or even for the whole social system, especially in the countries with poorly developed or transitional economies.
№ 2, 2007
The author analyzes the impact of social inequality on the Russian political process. Yu. Krasin speaks about the Russian phenomenon of “excessive inequality” conditioned by poverty and scrutinizes such its consequences as “culture of inequality” that penetrating into politics creates the atmosphere of intolerance and confrontation, stays in the way to national unity and destroys the basics of civil solidarity; and “political poverty”, i.e. the exclusion of the bigger part of the population from the public sphere, the loss of the ability to represent one’s interests in front of the society and the state. And although “poor Russia” keeps silence, in the depth of the society dangerous processes are engendering and the energy of protest is being accumulated, without getting openly into the political sphere it is expressed in socially deviant behavior (drug addiction, alcoholism, crime, religious fanaticism, etc.). Yu.Krasin believes that such forms of protest are as detrimental as a revolt since they exhaust the creative potential of the people thus challenging the future of Russia.
№ 3, 2004
According to the author the public sphere of modern Russian society is still in the initial stage. It is not consolidated at the national level and divided into loosely connected links. It is deformed by the state bureaucracy interests, and its own influence on the state politics is rather limited.
Nevertheless, the public sphere exists and functions, although due to the rise of authoritarian tendencies its prospects are not so bright. That is why it is important for the public policy to be able to defend itself through appropriate institutional instruments.
№ 1, 2003
Public tolerance: needs and obstacles.
The authors are convinced that the culture of tolerance is a necessary condition for strengthening of young Russian democracy, which is currently surviving a deep crisis. It is especially important since modern development polarizes private interests, and it is getting more and more difficult to reduce these to the common denominator. The corner stone of tolerant attitude to private interests and opinions, to groups and individuals expressing them is to recognize otherness as something natural and integral. The article covers the review of the social component of tolerance. An emphasis is made to the historical specifics of Russian tolerance.
№ 3, 1998
The article, that presents a synopsis of the book by the same authors «Russia on the Crossroad: Authoritarian Rule or Democracy: Possible Models of Development» (published in 1998) analyses the reasons for the growth of autocratic tendencies in the Russian political elite and the society in general and considers the negative consequences of a potential autocratic evolution of the political system. This scenario is counterbalanced by still non-exhausted possibilities of the democratic development of Russia.
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