The End of “Transitology”? (Reflecting on the First Post-Communist Decade as Subject of Theoretical Interpretation)


Kapustin B.G.,

Dr. Sci. (Philos.), Senior Lecturer, Yale University, USA, boriskapustin1951@gmail.com

ID of the Article:


For citation:

Kapustin B.G. The End of “Transitology”? (Reflecting on the First Post-Communist Decade as Subject of Theoretical Interpretation) . – Polis. Political Studies. 2001. No 4. P. 6 (In Russ.)



Abstract
The essay purports a critical analysis of “transitology” as a paradigm of post-soviet studies. The idea of “postcommunist transition”, in its multiple modifications, is in fact “the second edition” of the theories of modernization that flourished in the fifties-sixties but were largely abandoned later because of their intellectual inconsistency and political inadequacy. The adjustment of these theories to the study of postcommunism as it was determined both by the specific character of the subject matter and by certain ideological exigencies, resulted in intellectual impoverishment and moral insensitivity of “transitology” if compared with at least “revisionist” versions of the modernization theory that proliferated in the sixties - early seventies. The essay examines how these features of “transitology” shape (or thwart) the style of thinking manifested in the mainstream post-sovietology and in theories of democratization in particular. The essay concludes that a shift to alternative paradigms in post-sovietology is overdue, postmodernism being one of the most promising among them.

Content No 4, 2001

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Round Table of the «Polis» Journal, Belov G.A., Lebedeva T.P., Melville A.Yu., Nazarova Yu.S., Pokrovsky N.Ye., Ryseva I.A., Solovyov A.I.,
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Podvintzev O.B.,
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