Svetlana Neretina
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2017-3.1-34-53

The problem of the reliability of history, assessments of events and facts puts the researcher before the necessity of analyzing the very concept of history and its understanding as a bearer of the metaphysical. In the course of the analysis, a figure of the historian (Histor) - an elected arbitrator or an authoritative person, necessary for the initial court-judgment in a certain case was identified. Analysis of the Platonic dialogue "Sophist" allows us to discover the metaphysics of history through pairs of concepts such as: being and nothingness, movement and rest, identical and different, treating it as the art of creating images and as a myth caught and realized at the time of its appearance. Change of the image of history is facilitated by a speech that can change meanings. Historian (Histor) and sophist are two terms that have shown the limits of our understanding of being, which is atomic and which constantly forces us to make choices.

Madkhavan Palat
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2017-3.1-9-33

Hobsbawm’s modern world originated in the big bang of the eighteenth century, and it was extinguished in an implosion almost exactly two centuries later. To him these two hundred years were defined by the project of the Enlightenment which imagined a world that was equally good for all of humanity and not for just some part of it. More than revolution, the Enlightenment drove this world onward until it seems to have exhausted itself by the end of the twentieth century: the Marxist Hobsbawm is inspired more by the Enlightenment than by one of its consequences, the millenarian dream of revolution. Deriving from the Enlightenment, the conjoined industrial and French revolutions, known as the dual revolution in his work, generated all subsequent events. The industrial revolution assumed both capitalist and socialist forms, and the political revolution inaugurated by the French species spawned a series of bourgeois and socialist revolutions, attempts at revolution of both types, and revolutions against revolution, or counter-revolutions. They permeated not only the politics and the economy of the continent, but as much its social and cultural processes and the sciences and the arts. His magnificent oeuvre celebrates this universe bounded by the two revolutionary waves of the late eighteenth and the late twentieth centuries; but it is a celebration that broods on its dark side as much as on its stupendous achievements. His grand theme is the hope held out by the Enlightenment, the revolutions that sustained it, and the counter-revolutions that negated it. As this modern world drew to its close in the 1990s, a gloomy uncertainty hangs over the world, and his musings on the post-Cold War world reflect this unease.

Gennady Pikov
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2017-2.2-99-107

The article is devoted to the phenomenon of the so-called "people of culture" in two areas of Eurasia - Europe and East Asia. They appear as a product of cultural exchange between the "South" (the Mediterranean, China proper) and the "North", inhabited by people of a different mentality and economy. We are talking about a different perception of the so-called ancient culture, that is, the configuration of culture that developed in antiquity and became paradigmatic for the whole metaregion ("Christian World", East Asian Civilization Zone). As examples of such people are taken the largest figures of medieval culture I. S. Eriugena, who left a deep trace in scholasticism, and a member of the imperial clan Yēlǜ in the nomadic Chitan Empire Liao (907-1125) Tuǜ. People with unconventional looks on culture and complex destiny, they demonstrated a peculiar attitude to southern culture not as a form and means of education, but as a complex of ideas and recipes for building a new political and cultural reality.

I.S. Kuznetsov
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2017-1.1-180-184

The subject of analysis is the article by I.V. Zhezhko-Braun. It is useful to discuss the history of the Siberian city of science, taking into account the present state of the RAS. The author highlights the uniqueness of this historical phenomenon, where the appearance of certain structures of civil society could be even more important than scientific discoveries. The article is based on unique sources, the resources, used by the author, involved oral narratives, interviews with a number of contemporaries and participants in the events described. For further research it is recommended for the author to use more available sources, primarily documents of the party organs. The author has to deeper present the general context in which these events took place. It is very important to substantiate the application of the term «student movement» to the opposition phenomena in Novosibirsk Akademgorodok.

«VIEWS WHICH WE PROPAGANDIZED ARE OFTEN RIDICULOUS…» The post-war Commission of Party Control at the Central Committee of the All-Union Communist Party (Bolsheviks) against dissent of “soldiers of the Communist party”
Alexey Teplyakov
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2017-1.1-97-106

The article analyzes the implementation of the control by the Party Control Commission of the Central Committee of the CPSU(b) over the political behavior of the Communists in the postwar period. The moral resistance of the members of the ruling party to the authorities’ policy is one of the brightest phenomena of the Soviet era. Documents of the Party Control Commission mostly consist of decisions on appeals of the punished Communists, which allow us to see the characteristic manifestations of dissent from both ordinary party members and the officials. These people denied the brutality of the regime and the limitation of themes available for criticizing. The PCC (the Party Control Commission) brought to justice those responsible for violations of party discipline and ethics. The dissent and perseverance in defending their views were considered to be particularly serious violations of party discipline. The article shows numerous examples of frequent disagreements with the official policy of the backbone of the Communist party: the officials, the old Bolsheviks, army officers, security officers, propagandists. The party punishment was often followed by the charge of a crime. It is obvious that in conditions of terror, the party members tried to hide their views. That’s why the information about different forms of open protest during the period of late Stalinism becomes more valuable, when the numerous controlling structures carefully suppressed intra-party dissent.

Oleg Donskikh
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2017-1.1-118-127

This article examines the dynamics of the process of geographical perception of Siberia, in the aspect of the forming of the idea of Siberia as geographical and cultural unity. There are presented, in particular, quite legendary testimonies of foreign travelers who almost up to the end of the 17th century were getting pretty random information from Russian merchants; some data from the proper Siberian Chronicles is also given. Taking into account the idea of empire as a political structure that prevailed in the last 2,500 years of human history, author deals with the cultural and political factors which has determined the integrity of the idea of Siberia as a specific megaregion. Particularly the question of the nature of the development of Siberia in terms of the corresponding type of colonization is examined. It is concluded that the population of Siberia, despite the fact that it was used and even became in the first place famous as a region of exile, the consciousness of Siberians is not typical for colonial territory. Since the end of the 18th century the representation of a Siberian as a special group of the Russian population is firmly established.

A.I. Fet
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2016-4.2-146-160

This article is a continuation of the article "Russian Universities and the Russian Intelligentsia" Part 1, published in this journal, №3, 2016. The author discusses the problem of the Russian intelligentsia formation and the role, which the Russian university community played in the process. He also demonstrated the origins of the "groundlessness", which has always distinguished the Russian intelligentsia, and analyzed the reasons for its invariable opposition to any authority. The author proves the thesis that the revolutionaries of all stripes represented a semi-intelligentsia: instead of thick books, these people read the brochures, and they replaced the philosophy with the party ideology. Semi-intelligentsia played a leading role in all French Revolutions, and later in the Russian one. The article analyzes the destiny of Russian universities during the years of Soviet power. The years of "stagnation" meant already the agony of Russian universities, which had lost all the impulses to scientific activities. The experimenters were without instruments, theorists were without books ─ they were isolated from the world; they were under a bureaucratic ban. The author gives a brilliant analysis of the role and significance of the Russian intelligentsia in the Russian and world history. In his opinion, the main distinctive characteristic of the Russian intelligentsia was unselfishness. In the West, “freedom” and “equality” meant protecting group and class interests; in Russia, however, these words were understood as “brotherhood” with all oppressed people without any self-interest.

Irina Zhezhko-Braun
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2016-4.1-109-134

The students movement in the 1960s in the Novosibirsk State University (NGU), the longest open legal students movement of the Soviet period, is analyzed in this article.  The previous publications on this subject do not present the movement in its entirety, nor properly reflect the nature of the phenomenon. The civil movement in Akademgorodok (the Academytown) and, in particular, at the NGU was a by-product of the famous Siberian experiment. Nowadays, this by-product is quite topical in search for the best strategy of social change. The article reconstructs and analyses the preconditions and factors of the students movement, as well as the spectrum and directions of its political activities: self-organization and self-management, club activities, participation in choosing the Rector, protection of student political and academic freedoms, preservation of the autonomy of the university, etc. The conclusions about the nature of the movement are made based on numerous memoirs and available documents.

N.Yu. Pivovarov,  V.V. Shilov,  Irina Krayneva
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2016-4.1-135-155

Computer engineering became a reality in the USSR in the mid-1950s. Capabilities of this new branch, demonstrated in the Soviet Atomic Project, generated an urge to expand the production of computers not only in the defense industry but in the civilian economy as well. Since the USSR’s economy developed in confrontation to the capitalist world, the political cliché “to catch up and outdo” introduced by V.I. Lenin back in 1917 was reiterated by other Soviet leaders in different situations. In particular, it was popular after the Second World War and, among other things, was applied to computer engineering. The comparative production of computers in the USSR and in the West was not in favor of our country. Our modest success was primarily attributed to the general slippage in this area. The situation with computer engineering is an example of the catching-up nature of the Soviet technological development during the period of late Stalinism. Nevertheless, since computer production was launched, there emerged a need for specialists both in industrial production and maintenance. Hence, appropriate disciplines were introduced in the Soviet higher educational institutions. Computer specialists were trained in Moscow, Leningrad, Gorky, Kiev, Penza, and in other leading universities of the USSR. Dating back to this period, until the mid-1950s, there are three out of the four principal academic programming schools, based in Moscow, Leningrad and Kiev.  At the same time, A.A. Lyapunov laid back the foundations of the theory of programming and L.A. Lusternik organized, in 1950, a workshop on programming at the Institute of Precise Mechanics and Computer Engineering, USSR Academy of Sciences. Computer design was improved simultaneously with software development. From the very beginning, the civilian applications of computers took computer engineering beyond mathematical calculations, to automatic translation, and with time this tendency grew stronger. The new industry developed in the conditions of severe competition between the two establishments: the USSR Machine-Building Ministry and Academy of Sciences, each promoting their own project. Various means were used in this struggle, up to classifying information about computers in academic and mass media. The ideological pressure on some scientific areas of biology, genetics and physics, characteristic of the late Stalin’s period, did not have any serious consequences for computer engineering. Yet, computer advocates intentionally distinguished themselves from the “bourgeois” theories of computer animation. Computer applications in civilian branches of economy were artificially held back: no small share in this had the authorities’ stance to strengthen, above all, the national defense potential.

A.I. Fet
DOI: 10.17212/2075-0862-2016-3.2-155-169

The article "Russian Universities and the Russian Intelligentsia" was written at the request of Inna Kizhner to work with students. According to Inna, it was in 1996, when she was working with a group of economists. She might be wrong. I remember that year very well: A.I. Fet was in America for a long time and returned to Russia only in December. Apparently, he started writing this article not earlier than in 1997. He wrote about half of the text at once up to the chapter "Russian Universities before the Revolution and the Emergence of the Russian Intelligentsia," and then he gave it up for a few years. At some moment, Inna reminded him of her request. A.I. Fet half-heartedly returned to the writing of his manuscript, having marked in it that it is necessary to insert a certain section from "Instinct." At that time, he was absorbed in the work on the book, but, yielding to Inna’s insistence he wrote the last half, ending it with the words "Russian universities, Russian science and science education will have to be rebuilt. We need to overcome this tragedy quietly. You cannot be angry with these swindlers: they do not know what they do". As such, the article was ready in 2001; then A. I. Fet added the chapter "The Russian Intelligentsia" from "Instinct", prefacing it with a small foreword.