Distinctions of political cultures and the international conflicts
Dr. Sci. (Philos.), Professor, Chief Research Fellow, Institute of Philosophy, Russian Academy of Sciences, firstname.lastname@example.org_id: 1435 |
The dramatic events in Ukraine frustrate the world order that seemed to have just been established and do not offer any conceptual evaluations of it. The crisis is mostly considered to be of purely political nature and is discussed far less thoroughly than, for example, the Cold War used to be analysed. This article offers a review of the positions of certain American researchers who only partly share the Washington’s point of view on the Ukranian crisis or disagree with it completely, though all fear the imminent changes. The study of their positions brings us to the understanding of concrete distinctions of the Russian and Western political cultures. All in all, Russia’s geopolitical position, clearly underpinned by the determination to protect the country’s national interests, clashes with the Western concept of democratic transformations, which, in turn, covers a desire for expanding the sphere of Western influence. The author attempts to demonstrate that the decisive concepts in interpreting the «West vs non-West» conflict are those implying conservation, in the West, of the idea of non- Western countries’ modernization catching up with the West. This vision is not adequate to the reality of many non-Western countries, and first of all of Russia and China, being deeply involved in national modernization models borrowing the experience both of the West and of the non-West on the basis of the use of their own culture as resource of development. From this point of view, democracy does not present itself as a ready-made project, but is built by each country with due regard for possibility of its adoption by the masses. The problem is thus raised of the Russian traditional values being an annoying obstacle for the West. It is demonstrated that such values are inherent in the West likewise, and their renunciation would have led to anomy in the period of transition to the modern. Analyzing contemporary Western political and, still more attentively, political-science discourse, the author distinguishes in it – and criticizes – a visible trend of reducing the concept of Europe to the bounds of the EU. To sum it up, both political cultures – the Russian and the Western – contain common elements, but differing dominants. Their serious and reciprocal discussion may produce upheavals capable of preserving from irrevocable changes.
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