The Discussion of the Concept of Progress in the Modern Society
Kondratyeva Maria
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2021-13.3.1-176-187
Abstract:

The article explores the idea of social progress in the context of the history of human society. The author considers the concept of progress in interrelation with the three revolutions. The first revolution was an agrarian one, which established the dominant religious consciousness and dependence on the divine intervention. Accordingly, the idea of progress as opposed to the perfection of God was not dominant. The world of nature is born, develops, and dies. This approach prevailed for about seven thousand years: from the first civilizations to the XV - XVIII centuries. According to the Judeo-Christian tradition, after the fall, the world fell away from God. This understanding corresponds to the primordial approach and is also opposite to the idea of progress. In the Renaissance, the secularization of consciousness and culture begins. Culture and values are formed on the basis of religious Judeo-Christian values, but a man becomes the bearer and guarantor of these values. The ideas of humanism and worshipping of a human being as the main creator are reflected in philosophy, art, and painting. In accordance with this approach, the idea of progress is born. The idea of progress is fully formed and takes possession of the masses in the age of Enlightenment. During this period, the industrial revolution is taking place. In European culture, the primacy of rationality, machine labor and equality is asserted. But at the same time, the industrial revolution entailed many social crises that are still relevant today. The United States and Europe were gradually able to overcome the challenges of the industrial revolution and create a system of “capitalism with a human face”, while partially imposing their system on other countries where production is cheaper. Therefore, the problems of the so-called “wild capitalism” still take place in the third world countries.

By the middle of the XX century, science became the leading factor in manufacturing. Society is changing from industrial to post-industrial. The article focuses on the problems and opportunities of the modern post-industrial society with all the accumulated baggage of the previous stages of development. Humanity has achieved great technological success, and the scientific and technological revolution has brought material benefits to society. But at the same time, the consumer society creates many problems. What is progress in the context of modern discourse? The answer to this question is the purpose of this article.

The Final Stage of the Minority Revolution in the United States. Upward Mobility of Minorities to the Corridors of Power
Zhezhko-Braun Irina
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2021-13.2.1-62-91
Abstract:

This article is the third and final in a series dealing with the birth of a new political elite in the United States, the minority elite. In previous articles, the mechanism of its appearance was analyzed, as well as its ideology, goals, program and values. The black movement, as the most co-organized of all protest movements, is entering the final phase of its development, being engaged in the placement of its representatives in state and federal governments, political parties and other social institutions. The women’s movement has recently been taken over by ethnic movements, primarily blacks, and has become their vanguard. This article describes new social elevators for the promotion of minority representatives into the corridors of power. The logic of promoting people of their own race, gender and nationality to the highest branches of power began to prevail over other criteria for recruiting personnel. During the 2020 election campaign, a new mechanism for promoting minorities in all branches of government was formed. It is based on numerous violations of local and federal electoral legislation. The mechanism of pressure on the US electoral system is analyzed using the example of the state of Georgia and the activities of politician Stacey Abrams. The article describes Abrams’ strategy to create a network of NGOs that are focused on one mission - to arrange for the political shift of the state in the elections. These organizations circumvented existing laws, making the state of Georgia the record holder for electoral irregularities and lawsuits. The article shows that Abrams’ struggle with the electoral laws of her state is based on the political myth of the voter suppression of minorities. The author identifies a number of common characteristics of the new elite. The minority elite does not show any interest in social reconciliation and overcoming racial conflict, but rather makes efforts to incite the latter, to attract the government to its side and increase its role in establishing “social justice” through racial quotas and infringement of the rights of those social strata that it has appointed bearers of systematic racism in society. As the colored elite increases and the government’s role in resolving racial conflicts grows, the minority movement is gradually condemned, it ceases to be a true grassroots movement and turns into astroturfing.

The “Flight” of Soviet Elites to Opposition in the Late 1980s – Early 1990s: Macro-Sociological Analysis
Filippov Sergey
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2021-13.2.1-92-109
Abstract:

The article deals with investigation into the conditions of the defection of the national Soviet party-state functionaries to opposition in the USSR (late 1980s – early 1980s) that is an important indicator of the loyalty of the national elites towards the central government.

The analysis is based on comparing two contrastive cases – the Soviet elites of Latvia and those of Kazakhstan in their interactions with the central government as well as local population. Despite seemingly obvious cultural and historical differences, both cases are similar regarding some important aspects such as socio-demographic, economic as well as cultural dynamics in the late Soviet period. In both republics, the proportion of migrants in the whole population as well as in the elites was relatively high. The intensive migration in the post-war period was a result of the rapid industrialization and the Virgin Land campaign in the case of Kazakhstan. The Soviet elites both of Latvia and of Kazakhstan were loyal to the Union center, Russian-speaking and more international than national oriented. Besides, the national movements in both republics were practically nonexistent at the beginning of the perestroika.

Nevertheless, many Latvian national ruling cadres joined the opposition in the late 1980s – early 1991s whereas Kazakh national elites remained mostly loyal to the Union center up to the dissolution of the USSR (Kazakhstan declared its independence only on 16 December 1991, as the last republic to leave the USSR) – although Kazakh national party-state functionaries did not have less reasons to get rid of the tough control from Moscow than national elites of Soviet Latvia.

As the theoretical basis the author applies the R. Collins` state-centered theory of ethnos elaborated in the framework of the Weberian paradigm. The analysis showed that decreasing loyalty of the Latvian national elites in the late 1980s – early 1991s was due to the success of the protest movement in this republic including the violent confrontation with its rivals in January 1991 (“The Barricades”). A broad support of the protest movement striving for the reestablishment of the independence from the Soviet Union was based on anti-immigration ideological alternative to official Soviet internationalism attracting different social and ethnic groups of Latvian population.

A relatively high level of the loyalty of the Kazakh national elites to the central government was caused by the effective suppression of the Kazakh youth riots in December 1986 that triggered the purge of the national ruling cadres in Kazakhstan initiated by Moscow. A relatively low social support of the protest movement in the republic was due to the lack of a broad ideological basis that could create solidarity between different social and ethnic groups that made up the population of Kazakhstan. Besides, the protest of 1986 with Kazakh students as the main participants was perceived by local population in the logic of ethno-territorial conflicts very common in the late Soviet Kazakhstan and evoked therefore not solidarity but fear and anger.

On the Formation of the Axiological Content of the Spatiotemporal Structure of Human Existence
Politov Andrei
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2021-13.2.1-110-125
Abstract:

The author considers the foundations of the origin and formation of the axiological content of the spatiotemporal structure of human existence. The object of the research is a human being and culture at the turn of the twentieth and twenty first centuries. The theoretical and methodological foundation combines a number of approaches characteristic of the social humanities: the scientific research program of cultural centrism aimed at understanding the complex subject of social and humanitarian problems and allowing to reveal and describe its unique, individually expressed properties; the relational concept of time and space, according to which the latter exist only in mutual connection with objects and, therefore, in inseparable unity with human being; dialectical model, within the framework of which the universe is an integral organic evolving process, all structural elements of which are dialectically interconnected; the theory of chronotope affirms the immanent unity of time and space. All that has been noted makes it possible, within the framework of the presented study, to interpret space and time as a complexly structured evolving multilevel chronotopological organization immanent to human being. Human existence appears as a temporal component of the chronotopological structure, and the spatial axis of the latter is the locus of human existence and the world around a person. The value content of human space and time arises and receives its development according to their relational essence, due to their inextricable dialectical relationship with human existence. The evolution of space and time is inseparable from the evolution of human being, is an integral component of his existence, which appears as personal, aesthetic and value development, experiencing the world around him, existentially and ethically determined communication with him. Forming and evolving together with a person, time and space not only act as accidents and modes of his being, but become his value-structured life-world, interconnected with the social and cultural spheres.

Public and Private on a Social Media Profile through the Lens of Sandra Petronio’s Theory
Sapon Irina
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2021-13.2.1-126-142
Abstract:

A profile on a social network site (SNS) containing the user’s personal information qualifies as both a personal and public space, which raises the problem of delineating, what is private and what is public in this virtual domain. The paper attempts to identify privacy boundaries in the social media environment and the actual ownership of personal information disclosed on users’ profiles. The stated problem is considered through the lens of Communication Privacy Management theory, an influential approach to the study of privacy in the online environment proposed by Sandra Petronio. The terms and concepts of the theory are applied to analyze the peculiarities of privacy management of the user’s personal information on the pages of the social network VKontakte (i.e. in the context of ‘one-to-many’ communication). The peculiarities noted are as follows: the presence of social media administration as a co-owner of the data (i.e. the user is not granted exclusive ownership of their personal information); difficulties with discussing information ownership rules with other social media participants; the presence of such phenomena as ‘online friends’ and ‘the imagined audience’ making it difficult for the user to recognize the composition of their actual audience and set proper privacy boundaries. It is also shown that the social network provides what can only be described as rather vague collective privacy boundaries (if the term privacy is even applicable to the social media environment). All the information shared by the user on the social media profile crosses the personal privacy boundaries and is moved almost uncontrollably to the collective ownership domain. The further theoretical research of privacy management of personal information on social media profiles should aim to critically examine the concept of collective privacy in the digital space and determine the ownership rights of original owners of personal information gone public.

"Project 1619" as an alternative to "American project"
Zhezhko-Braun Irina
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2021-13.1.1-80-111
Abstract:

Тhis article is the second in a series on the birth of a new elite in the United States, called ‘the minority elite’. The previous article hypothesized that what is happening is not so much the replenishment or evolution of the old elite, but the emergence of a new one, grown on the basis of the Affirmative Action Program, the culture of ‘woke capitalism’ and decades of the minority protest. The process of elite change intensified on the wave of protest activity of black minority, primarily ‘Black Lives Matter’ movement, in the summer of 2020, which coincided with elections to all branches of government. The new elite need to create their own version of American history and their liberation mission. The ideological paradigm of the black movement includes several social doctrines: ‘The 1619 Project’, critical race theory, Black liberation, theories of white privilege, white supremacy and anti-racism. ‘The 1619 Project’ clearly demonstrates how the new elite understand the past, present and future of the United States and their place in the social structure. This article analyzes the theses of ‘1619’, and also contains the main conclusions of the professional criticism of this project. The goal of the project, according to its authors, is to reframe American history. It places slavery and systematic racism at the very center of US history and thereby denies the foundations on which the ‘American project’ is based. ‘1619’ is considered in the article as a socio-engineering project that includes various programs: curricula for colleges and schools, podcasts for radio, TV shows and films, interviews and speeches in universities, exhibitions, press publications, ideological themes for elections and trainings for organizations and social movements. The unprecedented speed of implementation and the scale of financing of the new version of American history in all spheres of society without its professional assessment indicate that this large-scale action was prepared in advance. The article deals with the fundamental factual errors in the presentation of history, analysis and interpretation of economic data in ‘1619’, including those that were uncritically borrowed from the school ‘New History of Capitalism’. It also addresses the doctrine of anti-racism. The analysis of the project showed a low level of evidence of the revision of history conceived in it. The author shows by the example of ‘1619’ that scientific research is not combined with ideological tasks, since the latter inevitably lead to adjustment to the given answer, a decrease in the level of the applied scientific apparatus and simplification of the conclusions drawn. Criticism of the project was heard only in the academic sphere, but did not get into the media. One of the most serious consequences of the project is the creation of a new mythology, supplanting from the public consciousness a version of American history based on the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution and proven historical facts. The black movement, albeit temporarily, managed to impose its own narrative on public opinion and create a rationale for moving into power and receiving new privileges.

Abuse of Right: Historical and Theoretical Research
Usoltsev Egor
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2021-13.1.1-112-129
Abstract:

Abuse of right is one of the most complex phenomena in legal science, the study of which requires the use of a wide range of methods of cognition, both general scientific and private law. The author of the article makes a generic analysis of the concept “abuse of right”, disclosing the history of its appearance and development. However, special attention is paid to the discussion of scientists about the essence of abuse of right, in which, as in a “multi-layered cake”, more and more narrow subjects of the discussion are layered, but at the same time, they are all permeated with a common goal – to determine the place and role of the phenomenon in the modern legal order. Historically, the first debate arose on the validity of the very concept of abuse of right, caused by a combination of two words that were opposite in meaning: “right” and “abuse”. This discussion has been going on for more than a century and takes place both in Russian civil law and in foreign legal doctrine. There is also no consensus among supporters of the concept of abuse of right: some attribute abuse of right to a variety of lawful behavior, others call it an offense. This problem is currently urgent and complex. Finally, there are disagreements about the branch of abuse of law: is this concept inter-branch in nature or is it exclusively inherent in the civil law branch? As a result of comparing all points of view, the author in each of the above discussions reasonably takes this or that position. As a result, a complete understanding of the phenomenon under study is formed.

Conditions of the National Elites Loyalty towards the Central Government in the Soviet Period of Russian History
Filippov Sergey
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2020-12.4.1-230-248
Abstract:

The article deals with the analysis of the Soviet national policy from a historical perspective with a focus on investigating into conditions of the loyalty of national elites towards the central government in the last period of the USSR existence. The indicators of the low level loyalty are as follows: supporting the ideas of national sovereignty and independence, participating in the national movement by ruling cadres, influential intellectuals and population. The author shows low sympathy of both groups of representatives: elites and broad population to nationalist ideas. The analysis is based on comparing contrastive cases – the Soviet elites of the Baltic republics (Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia) and Belorussia in their interactions with the central government as well as local population in the period from 1945 to 1991. These republics, their population and elites were similar regarding some important aspects such as historical and cultural as well as demographic characteristics in the case of Belorussia and Lithuania; some important features of the industry (big export-oriented enterprises) regarding Estonia, Latvia and Belorussia. At the same time, these cases showed a different level of the loyalty towards the Union center, namely, relatively high among the Belorussian Soviet ruling cadres and population and relatively low in the Baltic republics by the end of 1980s.

The important aspect of the Soviet national policy was establishing new national elites, educational and cultural institutions preserving their native languages as well as the promotion of native cadres into the positions of power in the regional administration. In some respects, this policy was similar to the “indirect rule” implemented in the imperial period of Russian history and consisted in the cooperation between the central government and local elites as the main approach to administrating a multinational state. However, in comparison with the previous practice tending to include national elites in the imperial nobility, the post revolutionary approach considered the creation of national elites through promoting local cultural and educational institutions that offer quite prestigious but specific positions occupied mostly by representatives of the respective ethnic group.

Creating local elites reduced the competition for “universal” positions since socialization and career of “national staff” were oriented towards national institutes. However, increasing numbers of “national staff” with limited positions for them had negative social consequences (elite overproduction). Intra-elite tension increased due to the migration from other regions (in the case of Latvia and Estonia). The other reason of this phenomenon was pursuing socialization strategies oriented to the places of origin (in the case of Lithuania). The attractiveness of the Baltic republics both for local population and migrants from other regions of the USSR was caused by a relatively high level of living standards in these union republics.

Location of big export-oriented enterprises in the territory of Belorussia created conditions for preferring socialization strategies oriented towards integration with the Soviet Union economy and, therefore, enhanced loyalty towards the USSR center from both elites and population. Besides, the administrative apparatus of the Soviet Belorussia was recruited extensively among participants of the Soviet partisan movement 1941–1944 what explains the devotion of the Belorussian elite to the Soviet symbols and values. At the same time, the base of the legitimization of the Soviet Lithuanian elite was its ability to control the anti-Soviet (nationalist) movement as well supporting national culture and language.

Sociality of Modernity and the Phenomenon of the “Left”
Rozin Vadim
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2020-12.4.1-145-161
Abstract:

The article analyzes the views of the “left” and criticism of these views by the famous journalist, writer and analyst Yulia Latynina. In addition, the author cites the objections by Latynina from other journalists and political scientists: Andrei Loshak and Evgenia Albats. The author does not consider the disputable arguments to be solid and undertakes his own analysis. It offers a concise outline of the genesis of the modernist culture, starting from the crisis of antiquity and the Middle Ages. Several prerequisites of this culture are highlighted: the need to obtain funds for warfare and at the same time establish order in the territory under control, the processes of reform and counter-reformation, the transfer of the center of power from heaven to earth and, as a result, the formation of a new semantic project, the formation of a new European personality, the development of the economy and cities, the invention and the formation of the state, the struggle of citizens for their rights and ideals. The causes of the crisis of modern culture itself are also discussed: social life has become much more complicated (as a result, it has diverged from the initial ideas of modernity) and technologies have been created that allow the state, society and law to be used differently than intended. As a result, a need arose to build a new semantic cultural project. Such a project was formed by the “left”. It contains two basic principles: the requirement of social justice for all and the socialist organization (distribution, redistribution, taxation, benefits, pensions, etc.) as a way to implement these requirements. In addition, the “left” insist that the rich should share with other citizens. The author shows that the “left” see and think in the framework of the new cultural project that they have created, and therefore do not accept criticism of them. In conclusion, he discusses the anthropological conditions of a possible future culture. On the one hand, it is culture and sociality that determine the value orientations of people, and on the other hand, since a person makes a contribution to sociality, partly depends on his activity whether good prevails over evil.

The New Upper Class: Revolutionary Elite Rotation in the USA
Zhezhko-Braun Irina
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2020-12.4.1-162-190
Abstract:

The article analyzes the emergence of a new political class or elite in the United States, which is called the minority elite. This article is the first in a series dedicated to this topic. The author formulates three interrelated prerequisites that have caused the emergence of the new elite: the spread of the Affirmative Action (AA) to all spheres of public life and, above all, to the education system; the phenomenon of “woke” capitalism; a long history of minority protest movements. Experts take the current protests for a revolution; the author proves the opposite statement: protests are a direct consequence and one of the stages of a step-by-step revolution. Its roots lie in the long-term training of personnel for the revolution and social technologies for it, in the creation of financial, informational and organizational infrastructures of protest movements, and in moral defeat and the surrender of the intellectual class. Over the decades, hundreds of protest movements of various sizes have been co-organized in the United States and dozens of professional protest organizations have been formed. One of them, Black Lives Matter, has its own program, strategy, tactics and a solid budget. The goal of the organization is to create its own ruling elite. The Protestant (WASP) elite ruled the country for more than two centuries, in the second half of the 20th century it was replaced by the so-called intellectual elite. Harvard University, by its decision to raise the level of acceptance tests in the 1960s, spawned new, intellectual elite, California universities, by abolishing tests in the 2010-2020s, bring to power a new social group – the beneficiaries of the AA. The black movement is confidently entering the final phase of its development – the placement of its representatives in state and federal authorities, political parties and other social institutions. Ideologues of identity politics, primarily racial, have arrogated to themselves the position of mentors and experts on social justice and the protectors of civil rights in society. Other protest organizations have joined the BLM, with socialist-oriented organizations in the lead. These organizations have effectively “hijacked” a wave of protests and are already working on a socialist agenda for the Biden-Harris administration, if elected.