Economic theory

Financial Development and Economic Growth: Analysis of Approaches to the Problem
Alexander Novikov,  Irina Novikova
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2020-12.4.2-251-266

The article deals with debatable questions about the relationship between economic growth and financial development. Both foreign and Russian authors have opposite points of view on the relationship between economic growth and financial development. The article states that financial development for developing countries is a factor of economic growth. The authors give a review of the literature proving the influence of financial development and its mechanism – the financial market – on economic growth. To illustrate this conclusion, they analyze the research aimed at studying the theoretical aspects of assessing the ratio of the level of financial market development and economic growth. The authors also investigate the formation of a methodological framework for assessing the impact of the level of financial market development on economic growth; identify the methods to quantitatively measure the level of financial market development and economic growth. The article analyzes the recommendations to develop measures to enhance the significance of financial market for economic growth of the country.

Is This the Right Way to Teach Economics to School Students?
Grigory Khanin
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2020-12.4.2-267-276

Due to the extremely low level of current Russian economic scientists and practitioners, we can only place our hope on the younger generation. In this regard, the article considers the textbook on Economic Theory recommended by the Ministry of Education of the Russian Federation for students of 10-11th grades, currently in its 26th edition. The textbook arouses no interest, only antipathy to Economics among school students. It is unjustifiably focused on economic theory, not practice. The textbook is too complicated and boring, almost completely ignoring the economic problems of Russia and Third World countries.

It is argued that the course of Economics for high school students can be not only informative and useful, but also involving. The Soviet and Russian economies are full of mysteries, which can make use of the enthusiasm school students have for solving mysteries and puzzles.

The author suggests a program for a course in Economics for school students, comprising 10 new chapters, as well as a summary of the new chapters.

The author also presents economic entities interested in high-quality school textbooks.

The textbook recommended by the Ministry of Education of the Russian Federation is compared to the previously published more informative and involving textbooks for high school students.

The State of Mechanical Engineering in the Modern Russian Economy
Natalia Bozo,  Ekaterina Malysheva,  Nadezhda Filatyeva
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2020-12.4.2-277-290

Machine building is a leading industry in advanced countries. It provides many industries with machines and equipment as it is the main link in the system of intersectoral linkages. Innovations in engineering create the basis for increasing production and qualitative changes in the structure of industry, that creates a synergistic effect for the economy as a whole. Thus, it secures full employment for highly skilled employees, promotes the growth of the level of educational background of the population and contributes to the development of the scientific and technological potential of the country. However, underinvestment in innovation technologies and processes, a limited character of the import substitution model and an insufficient support of the export model greatly hinder rapid and effective development of the machine-building industry. Specific peculiarities of the machine building development such as R&D intensity, labor intensity, and the intensity of metal use, the need in cooperation and consumer orientation influence their geographic location. Despite the decline in the number of enterprises and employment in the machine-building industry, the industry’s contribution to the GVA is stable. At the same time, the state’s interest in the development of all sectors with high added value will influence the future of engineering. In statistics innovative activity in mechanical engineering began to be considered relatively recently. The highest rates of innovation are high-tech engineering. The state’s share in supporting innovation in both manufacturing and engineering is increasing. The coefficients of specialization are calculated for all Federal districts and each of the 85 subjects of the Federation for the period from 2007 to 2017. Calculations were carried out for all types of economic activity, according to the classifier of OKVED. The specialization industries for each of the regions are identified. The group of regions where engineering is concentrated is defined. These 19 regions did not change their industry of specialization during the analyzed period from 2008 to 2017.

Issues of Typology of Municipal Infrastructure
Tatyana Skripkina
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2020-12.4.2-291-310

The subject of this work is the uneven development of infrastructure in municipal districts of the Russian Federation. The article presents the author’s method of typology of municipalities by the level of infrastructure development, which allows overcoming the shortcomings of the information base of municipal statistics using the data imputation algorithm. The proposed approach solves the problem of weak population structure using a combination of four methods of multidimensional statistics (cluster analysis, factor analysis, metric multidimensional scaling and discriminant analysis) in the framework of a combination of variational and aggregate concepts of data typology. The idea of the considered method is that if an object falls into the same type as a result of applying different typology methods, then it is a stable representative (“core”) of this type. A set of such objects for each type is used as training samples for discriminant analysis, which allows you to typologize the remaining transition objects using mathematical tools. The methodology was tested on a set of municipal districts of the Russian Federation (in 2018). There are 4 types of municipal districts with high, satisfactory, insufficient and low level of infrastructure development. As of 2018, 89 (5.1%) municipal districts of the Russian Federation have a high level of infrastructure development, 308 (17.6%) – satisfactory, 570 (32.6%) – insufficient, 783 (44.7%) – low. The inverse relationship between the level of infrastructure development of municipal districts and the degree of urbanisation of the territory is shown: the largest number of districts with highly developed infrastructure is located in territories with a significant share of the rural population.

Social ideal and social consciousness

Moral Principles in the Life of Society, or “Metaphysics of History”
Vladislav Cheshev
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2020-12.4.2-311-329

The article investigates the influence of moral principles on historically developing social relations. The appeal to this problem is based on a conceptual approach to the origin of human morality, which arises in the course of sociogenesis as a set of behavioral principles that provide the intraspecific cultural (non-genetic) solidarity necessary for human societies. It is noted that the moral consciousness of individuals, which regulates interpersonal relationships, is a necessary but insufficient means for transmitting moral principles. Morality is expressed in the relationship between society and an individual. Society solves the problem of reproduction of moral regulators, it brings them into the nature of social relations by necessity. In this regard, attention is drawn to the role of elite groups in solving the aforementioned problem, in particular, it points out the peculiarities of the formation of an elite layer in Russian history. The elite is the bearer of moral images of social behavior, which expresses the attitude to public goals, interests, historical meanings of social life. The task of the elite is the implementation of these principles in the nature of social relations. The egoism of individuals and social groups can impede the solution of such a problem. Overcoming difficulties of this kind can be achieved by an awareness of history, which provides the basis for public consensus. The article focuses on the ethos of the “spirit of capitalism”, which enters into the social environment through the principles of the organization of economic activity. The paper shows the relevance of the problem of interaction of economic ethics and moral foundations of society as a systemic whole.

An Ideal Religion for an Ideal State
Anna Afonasina
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2020-12.4.2-330-350

All of us have an idea of the ideal conditions in which we would like to live. They will vary according to the degree of ambition and level of education. However, people have common wishes since we don’t live in isolation (perhaps with rare exceptions) and we require guarantees from other people that they are willing to accept certain rules and conditions for the best possible coexistence. Plato was the first to look for such general or even necessary requirements to create an ideal social structure. He considers different aspects of social reality – the division of society into classes, the specifics of upbringing and education, even the physical structure of the city and its religion. The article is devoted to the consideration of religious practices, associated cult activities and holidays.

In ancient Greece, religion permeated all areas of human life. It would be more correct to say that religion simply did not exist separately from everyday life. Of course, we can distinguish major religious events in the form of solemn organised processions marking the change of seasons, dedicated to the harvest or some other memorable dates. But more often, religious practices were tightly woven into people’s lives, so that even political and military actions were accompanied by an offering to the gods or consultation with the oracle. Understanding the role that religious activity plays in educating citizens, Plato does not seek to create an entirely new popular religion, but as a philosopher interested in the common good, he begins to interpret the images of traditional Greek gods differently. He focuses most of his attention on Zeus, Dionysus and Aphrodite. By comparing traditional notions of the gods with the way Plato portrays them, we conclude that the philosopher has done serious work to rationalise their images. Zeus ceases to be a famous womanizer and head of Olympus, and acquires the traits of a creator, the only good god who is incapable of any evil or injustice. The raucous fun, dancing and intoxication that used to be the cause of many misfortunes and associated with Dionysus are now being declared useful in terms of testing strength and honesty on the one hand, and, on the other, are understood as a necessary means of getting rid of negative energy and bringing people together. The uncontrolled erotic desire sent by Aphrodite is seen by Plato as behavior that is unacceptable in the citizens of an ideal state, and so he develops the doctrine of the two Aphrodites, heavenly and vulgar, in which the heavenly Aphrodite is declared to be a certain stimulus that leads the soul to the supreme good.  

Analytics of Spiritual Culture

Augmented Reality: Breaking into What World?
Vladimir Ignatyev
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2020-12.4.2-351-371

The article considers the phenomenon of augmented reality as a special hybrid reality and a part of social space. The author compares the differences in approaches to the interpretation of reality in philosophy, social theory and natural science. The provisions of phenomenological sociology are used as a methodological basis for the study. The author substantiates the necessity of conjugation of ontological and epistemological perspectives of interpretation of the “multilayer” social reality. The lack of concentration of attention in most studies on distinguishing these angles leaves the category of social reality on the periphery of the construction of social ontologies. And this is not a paradox, but a desire to avoid difficulties in choosing a research position when solving a problem of a certain class each time that arises: either to build ontological models of each layer of the social, or to re-enter into polemics about the permissible limits of avoiding solipsism.

The article shows one of the possible ways out of the vicious circle of polemics about the demarcation of ontology and epistemology by presenting the concepts of ‘social reality’ and ‘social actuality’ as a means of separating research angles. Their application makes it possible to establish that the environment formed by augmented reality is much more complex than it seems to the individual in his direct perception. It includes four spaces: 1) the objective world; 2) the mental world; 3) a hybrid world as a symbiosis of real and imaginary worlds; 4) symbiosis of fragments of the real world - torn apart in space and time and combined with the help of technologies in devices, which make it possible for an individual to be present while observing their combined existence and to operate with them. The author comes to the conclusion that this feature of the organization of space with the help of augmented reality implies the specificity of the changed social space in which individuals have to interact. There is a transformation of the basic ‘cell’ of society - the system of social interaction. It has been established that augmented reality technologies provide additional, qualitatively new opportunities for influencing individual pictures of the world. Augmented reality also complicates virtual reality, introducing, in addition to fictional characteristics, the content of practical actions. Augmented reality not only ‘comprehends’ the world, but is in direct practical contact with it, turning into a special side of constant reality. It was found that the interaction of augmented reality with social reality is reversible. Thanks to this process, social reality from ‘augmented’ reality is transformed into a ‘complex’ one, the qualitative determination of which can be designated as ‘hybrid social reality’. Its mode of existence is more complex than that of the human community, and is inaccessible to them as long as they retain the biological substrate of their corporeity. But no less significant consequence for social and anthropogenic transformation is the emergence in society of its new structural unit - a techno-subject, as an actor of a new species and a new agent that forms a hybrid society. It has been established that the user of augmented reality transforms the provided visual effects in his imagination into really (beyond imagination) existing things and phenomena (ontologization). A reverse movement also takes place - from illusions fixed in the imagination as objects (created by augmented reality), back to pure illusions (reverse hypostatization). The distinction between the observed and the hidden through the introduction of the concepts of social reality and social actuality makes it possible to discover a more complex structure of the social - its multi-layered nature, supplementing the ontology of social reality and, in particular, P. Donati’s relational theory of society, with ideas about such layers as actual and potential, virtual and valid. The article considers the possibility of extending the idea of ​​the heterarchical principle of the structure of society (developed in the works of I.V. Krasavin on the basis of the model of W. McCulloch) to the further development of the augmented reality ontology. The formation of space connections using AR technology is a continuation of the embodiment of the heterarchy principle, which brings the social structure beyond the structures of a constant society.

Three links in a Golden Chain
John Bigelow
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2020-12.4.2-372-393

One of Plato’s dialogues, the Timaeus (ca 370 BCE), describes an abstract numerical pattern that is said to have guided the creative work of an artisan, the Demiurge, who designed both the soul that animates the material world as a whole and the souls of each of the sentient beings that live within this world. Any artist or artisan who took this creation story seriously might reasonably be motivated to take guidance from this same numerical design in his or her own creative work, hoping thereby to mirror the macrocosm in the microcosm of a work of art. Have any artists in history tried to do that? Three likely candidates will be examined here. The first is Plato himself (in a short narrative of the generation of the pantheon of Greek gods, which he recounts in the Timaeus). The second is an unknown Medieval author of an epic poem about Charlemagne (The Song of Roland, ca. 1100 CE). The third is Iris Murdoch (in a novel, The Unicorn, 1963).

Rock-Culture as a Method of Entering into Post-Industrial Culture
Sergey Dyukin
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2020-12.4.2-394-411

Rock-music and rock-culture, which is formed on its basis, are methods of entering into culture of post-industrial society described by D. Bell, E. Toffler, F. Fukuyama and others. The correlation between rock-culture and post-industrial culture is established in the aspects of values, rules, practices and identities. In rock culture we can see the formation of the following values: creativity, initiative and individualism. Independence of creativity becomes an ethic imperative. It is more important than techniques and professionalism, which are characteristic of industrial culture. Exaggerated prevalence of innovation over playing tradition strengthens the status and role of the author striving for the permanent re-creation of his own image and style. Another quality, which helps rock culture penetrate into postindustrial society, is assimilation of daily routine by creative activity. This factor initiates consciousness emancipation and breakdown of hierarchical social structures. Rock-culture, as well as post-industrial society, experiences decentralization, de-synchronization and de-standardization. Such social-cultural disorder correlates with marginalization of rock-culture. It forms amateurism as a normative attitude that is opposed to professionalism. Finally the above-mentioned changes entail the collapse of the existing “big” identities, which are substituted by “small group” identities in rock-culture characterized by small potential for internalization. This change of identities, their overlapping triggers the formation of mental plurality, tolerance to mutually exclusive values, normative settings, practices and symbols. Mental pluralism allows a person to change quickly life strategies, respond to external challenges. The stable boundaries between private and public, between art and everyday life are being destroyed in the rock-culture. At the same time, the author highlights the fact that within rock culture entering post-industrial culture is carried out by non-linear way, with expenses and contradictions.

Leonardo Da Vinci. The Apology of Eye
Ekaterina Mayorova
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2020-12.4.2-412-428

The article is devoted to Leonardo da Vinci’s “eye is less deceived than any other sense” maxima. Leonardo’s belief about painting being the most perfect instrument for one’s ontology and epistemology is shown. Based on Leonardo da Vinci’s “Treatise on Painting”, a compilation of Leonardo’s works, the author explores how visual arts (and painting in particular) had come up to the forefront of the Italian Renaissance. Moreover, it is shown how painting takes a leading cultural role in Europe even to this day following the Renaissance. The article reveals why Leonardo da Vinci viewed painting to be better than science, mechanical arts and other liberal arts. The article considers the possibility of transforming personal experience into the universal experience of mankind. It also considers the focus on experience, direct comprehension of reality and varietà concept. The article is dedicated to the peculiarity of Leonardo’s art style, including its unique sfumato technique and chiaroscuro. The article also deals with the idea of Leonardo being the personification of the Renaissance’s creativity. As a result, he was the one who encapsulated the Renaissance period and simultaneously laid the foundation for further development of the arts for several centuries.

Ritual as a Way of Transmitting the Ideas of New Spirituality
Fedor Redin
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2020-12.4.2-429-450

The article is focused on the ritual practice of “NamMaReal”, the analysis of which allows to make a conclusion, that contemporary spirituality (also known as “new”, “post-secular”) can be transmitted through the ritual, which is similar to a religious one, despite the fact that religion and spirituality are mostly contraposed nowadays. The article presents the results of a qualitative study of “NamMaReal” based on the method put forward by A. Strauss and J. Corbin, with the help of which the author makes a conclusion that “NamMaReal” can be considered as a ritual of contemporary spirituality. The process of gathering the data and analytical procedures demonstrated great potential of qualitative research strategies in the empirical study of the phenomenon. The observation that lasted for one year and a series of interviews with participants in the practice and the subsequent categorization of the data obtained empirically revealed the presence in the worldview of participants of such semantic units as monism, the holistic nature of the worldview, the paramount role of personal experience and the path to individual truth, focus on achieving comfort and success in earthly life. It is established that NamMaReal has a pronounced three-part structure “concept-climax-denouement,” which, in accordance with their actual content, can be described in terms of the pre-liminal, liminal, and post-liminal stages highlighted by V. Turner in his theory of ritual. The presence in the structure of the event and specific symbolic actions of the elements of creativity of all participants, regardless of their ritual status, the dramatic filling of what is happening with their interactions and experiences, allows us to define NamMaReal as performance and agree with R. Schechner in his view on the performative foundations of ritual practices.

Three Origins of Poetry
Andrey Ivanov
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2020-12.4.2-451-472

The article substantiates the existence of three types of poetic creativity: technimatic (gaming), social-confessional and sophian. The personal-subjective aspirations of poet and playing with the language are the sources of technimatic poetry. The social-confessional line in the world poetry originates from the Chinese “Shijin” (“The Book of Songs”). The source of this type of poetry is a deeply personal reaction on the events taking place in the world, and the need to inform other people about personal experiences, contemplations and thoughts. Particular attention in the article is paid to the sophian line in world poetry. Its source is the eidetic super-personal reality. The poet creatively “connects” himself with this reality and introduces the reader to it through artistically revealed word. The feeling of the super-personal status of the created verses is one of the important attributes of sophian poetry. Homer, Dante, Avicenna, Rumi, V. von Eschenbach, Li Bo, Goethe, Tagore, Rilke, D. Andreev and Iqbal can be attributed to it. In Russian poetry of the 19th – 20th centuries Pushkin and Lermontov, Tyutchev and V. Solovyov, Blok and Gumilyov adjoin the sofian poetic line; Leopardi and Hesse –in the eastern and western poetic tradition. Sophian poetry performs important functions in culture. It is able to return to the words their original living meanings, familiarizing themselves with the essence of things and with the super-empirical reality of Cosmos. It also opens up new evolutionary horizons for language and national literature. The position of the sofian poet is twofold, which gives his work intense dynamism, and his life a tragic character. He simultaneously lives in two worlds: earthly and super-mundane, sensual-bodily and eidetic-semantic. From the eidetic layers of world existence, he is forced to convey knowledge to other people in the words, images and metaphors available to them. At the same time the inspirations and insights of the sofian poet are always preceded by intense professional work, the humility of one’s pride and vain passions.

Problems of national discourse

National-Cultural Organisations in Contemporary Siberian Cities: Issues of Ethnic Representation
Victor Dyatlov,  Iraida Nam
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2020-12.4.2-473-491

The so-called ‘national-cultural’ (natsional'no-kul'turnye organizatsii, NKO, or natsional'no-kul'turnye avtonomii, NKA), or ethnicity-based organisations, that started to emerge in Russia at the turn of the Soviet and the post-Soviet epochs have become an ordinary attribute of the country’s urban space. We were interested in the question of why and how these organizations have found themselves at the intersection of ethnic and migration discourses. For nearly 30 years we have been studying the case of Tomsk and Irkutsk national-cultural organisations (based on observations, participation in the events and activities organised by NKO/NKA and in the meetings of specialised advisory boards, interviews and surveys, materials released by national-cultural organisations and municipal authorities, mass media reports, etc.). This allows us to understand what role migrants themselves had to play: whether they were subjected to paternalistic care or contributed to accumulation of social capital by leaders and activists of national-cultural organisations, or both. Local authorities have come to see such organisations as a convenient tool to manage ‘diasporic’ communities, that is, organised ethnic groups, whose membership is associated with one’s ethnic origin or ethnicity and which are entitled to act independently as agents of social relations. NKO/NKA leaders are considered to be ‘diasporic bosses’ exercising the right to control and regulate their ‘diaspora compatriots’. That these organisations serve to meet specific ethnic groups’ cultural needs is not their single and possibly not even their main function. Their legal status (resulting from a special law on organisations of this type and a law on public organisations more generally) allows them to be in close contact with the authorities, and, in fact, to have a symbiotic relationship with them. As a result, these organisations have come to be informally tasked with assisting adaptation of migrants in Russian cities. Enthusiasts developing national/ethnic culture (‘ethno-entrepreneurs’) enjoy a certain degree of power given by the state and receive limited but important material and symbolic resources to present their activities as a consolidated ethnic group (‘diaspora’) in urban space. Leaders of ethnic organisations can also benefit from their status in both symbolic and material terms, serving as intermediaries between the ‘diaspora’ they construct and the authorities, and maintaining a relationship with their historical homeland.