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Russia and Neighbors: Issues of Mutual Understanding

русская версия

Опубликовано на портале: 04-10-2006
Russia and Neighbors: Issues of Mutual Understanding (by Boris Dubin). The author examines the dynamics of mass evaluations of Russia's relations with the former Soviet Republics during 1991-2005 within the frameworks of CIS, union with Belarus, hypothetical rapprochement of Slavic Republics, etc. Russia and the Russians are characterized by residual, isolationist and defensive in its functions complex of imperial superiority over other Republics. This is connected with the basic structure of the Russians collective identity, with the attitude at the Great State domination, at treating partner exclusively in terms of rivalry when manifestations or expectations of interested or friendly relationships of equals are understood as "weakness", "treachery", "ingratitude" on the part of the other. Such pattern of self-conception and attitudes to others makes it impossible for Russia to consolidate on positive values, including the patterns of national and civil self-determination. In collective identification the manifestations of xenophobia predominate, that is suspiciousness in relation to other countries, their values and experience, keeping at a distance and shutting off. These phenomena are compared to the processes of national and civil population mobilization in Ukraine in course of "the orange revolution". The latter is viewed as condensation and general expression of over decade experience (what is especially important for youth) of existing in different from Russia social conditions: without militarized empire, without myths of great leader and specific way, without nostalgia for "the golden age" of Brezhnev's rule.
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