Politico-Ideological Trends of Post-Soviet Societies: An Attempt of Generalization

Politico-Ideological Trends of Post-Soviet Societies:
An Attempt of Generalization

Letnyakov D.E.,

Senior Researcher, Institute of Philosophy, Russian Academy of Sciences, letnyakov@mail.ru

elibrary_id: 588916 |

DOI: 10.17976/jpps/2018.01.09

For citation:

Letnyakov D.E. Politico-Ideological Trends of Post-Soviet Societies: An Attempt of Generalization. – Polis. Political Studies. 2018. No. 1. P. 129-142. (In Russ.). https://doi.org/10.17976/jpps/2018.01.09


The paper is devoted to the analysis of ideological sphere of the former Soviet Union. The author argues that despite significant divergence of development trajectories of the post-Soviet countries, a number of general trends can be detected in their ideological sphere. In particular, we can highlight the role of nationalist ideology as the main symbolic resource for the post-Soviet elites that helps them to legitimize the status quo emerged after 1991. The importance of nationalism in the post-Soviet context is also manifested in the fact that nationalist discourse, being addressed primarily to the past, avoids talking about a project of the future, which, by and large, hasn’t appeared in any of the post-Soviet countries. Another common trend for the post-Soviet countries is the simulative character of political ideologies that are nothing more than Baudrillard’ simulacra. The author believes that the reason for this phenomenon is not so much the lack of democracy in the post-Soviet states, but rather the peculiarities of post-Soviet transformations as such, which have formed a kind of political elites aimed primarily at rent-seeking then at the public weal. 

former Soviet Union; Russia; ideology; nationalism; conservatism; modernization; democracy; political system.


Achkasov V.A. Transitology – Scientific Theory or Ideological Construct? – Polis. Political Studies. 2015. No. 1. P. 30-37 (In Russ.) https://doi.org/10.17976/jpps/2015.01.03

Balayan A. Politicheskie transformatsii v postsovetskoi Armenii: problemy adaptatsii i perspektivy integratsii v sovremennyi mir [Political Transformations in Post-Soviet Armenia: Problems of Adaptation and Prospects for Integration Into the Modern World]. Preprint M-29/12. St. Petersburg: European University at St. Petersburg Publ. 2012. 24 p. (In Russ.)

Balibar E., Wallerstein I. Race, Nation, Class. Ambiguous Identities (Russ. ed.: Balibar E., Wallerstein I. Rasa, natsiya, klass. Dvusmyslennye identichnosti. Moscow: Logos Publ. 2004. 285 p.)

Baudrillard J. Simulacra and Simulation. (Russ. ed.: Baudrillard J. Simulyakry i simulyatsii. Moscow: Postum Publ. 2016. 238 p.)

Beissinger M. Nationalist Mobilization and the Collapse of the Soviet State. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 2002. 503 p.

Bell D. The End of Ideology. On the Exhaustion of Political Ideas in the Fifties. Glencoe. 1960. 416 p.

Bobokhonov R.S. Civil war in Tajikistan (1992-1997). Causes, Course, Consequences and Lessons. – Social Sciences and Contemporary World Journal. 2011. No. 4. P. 74-83. (In Russ.)

Brubaker R. Nationhood and the National Question in the Soviet Union and Post-Soviet Eurasia: An Institutionalist Account. – Theory and Society. 1994. Vol. 23. No. 1. P. 47-78. https://doi.org/10.1007/BF00993673

Denisenko M., Kozlov V., Fattakhova A. Recent Trends in Remittances: Russia and the World. – Demographic Review. 2015. Vol. 2. No. 3. P. 5-29. (In Russ.)

Derlugian G. Bourdieu’s Secret Admirer in the Caucasus. A World-System Biography. (Russ. ed.: Derlugian G. Adept Burd’e na Kavkaze: eskizy k biografii v mirosistemnoi perspektive. Moscow: Territoriya budushchego Publ. 2010. 558 p.)

Development in Central Asia and the Caucasus: Migration, Democratisation and Inequality in the Post-Soviet Era. Ed. by S. Hohmann, C. Mouradian, S. Serrano, J. Thorez. 2014. London; N.Y. 399 p.

Fesenko V. Strength and Weakness of the Party System of Ukraine. – Political Science (RU). 2006. No. 1. P. 214-242. (In Russ.)

Formizano R.P. The Concept of Political Culture. – Pro et Contra. 2002. Vol. 7. P. 111-146. (In Russ.)

Fransua E. “Places of Memory” in German: How to Write Their History. – Ab imperio. 2004. No. 1. P. 29-43. (In Russ.)

Furman D.E. Moldavskie moldavane i moldavskie rumyny [Moldovan Moldovans and Moldovan Romanians]. – Doklady Instituta Evropy RAN [Reports of the Institute of Europe of RAS]. 2007. No. 206. Moscow. P. 278-315. (In Russ.)

Gadzhiev K.S. The End or Revival of Ideology? – Svobodnaya mysl’. 2016. No. 1 (1655). P. 93-104. (In Russ.)

Gaidar E.T. Gosudarstvo i evolyutsiya [State and Evolution]. – Vlast’ i sobstvennost’ [Power and Property]. St. Petersburg.: Norma Publ. 2009. P. 183-329. (In Russ.)

Hellman J.S. Winners Take All: The Politics of Partial Reform in Postcommunist Transitions. – World Politics. 1998. Vol. 50. No. 2. P. 203-234. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0043887100008091

Iskandaryan A. Armenia Between Autocracy and Polyarchy. – Pro et Contra. 2011. May-August. P. 19-28. (In Russ.)

Kapustin B.G. Postcommunism as Postmodernity (Russian Variant). – Polis. Political Studies. 2001. No. 5. P. 6-28. (In Russ.) http://www.politstudies.ru/en/article/2948

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. 6-26 (In Russ.) URL: http://www.politstudies.ru/en/article/2922

Karasev D.Yu. Charles Tilly’s Theory of Revolution. – Moscow State University Bulletin. Series 18. Sociology and Political Science. 2012. No. 4. P. 176-189. (In Russ.)

Karozers T. End of the Transit Paradigm. – Political Science (RU). 2003. No. 2. P. 42-65. (In Russ.) Katznelson I. Does the End of Totalitarianism Signify the End of Ideology? – Social Research. 1990. Vol. 57. No. 3. P. 557-569.

Khalid A. Postsovetskie sud’by sredneaziatskogo islama [Post-Soviet Destinies of Central Asian Islam]. – Konfessiya, imperiya, natsiya: religiya i problema raznoobraziya v istorii postsovetskogo prostranstva [Confession, Empire, Nation: Religion and the Problem of Diversity in the History of the Post-Soviet Space]. Moscow: Novoe izdatel’stvo Publ. 2012. P. 316-344. (In Russ.)

Malinova O.Yu. Konstruirovanie smyslov: issledovanie simvolicheskoi politiki v sovremennoi Rossii [The Construction of Meanings: The Study of Symbolic Politics in Present-Day Russia]. Moscow: INION RAN Publ. 2013. 421 p. (In Russ.)

Mandel R. Introduction: Transition to Where? Developing Post-Soviet Space. – Slavic Review. 2012. Vol. 71. No. 2. P. 223-233. https://doi.org/10.1017/S0037677900013590

Martin T. The Affirmative Action Empire: Nations and Nationalism in the Soviet Union, 1923-1939. Ithaca, London: Cornell University Press. 2001. 496 p.

Marx K., Engels F. Die Deutsche Ideologie. (Russ. ed.: Marx K., Engels F. Nemetskaya ideologiya. Moscow: Izdatel‘stvo politicheskoi literatury. 574 p.)

Miller A. Ot demokratii XIX veka – k demokratii XXI-go: kakov sleduyushchii shag? [From the Democracy of XIX to Democracy of XXI century: What is the Next Step?]. – Demokratiya i modernizatsiya: k diskussii o vyzovakh XXI veka [Democracy and Modernization: a Discussion on the Challenges of the XXI Century. Ed. by V.L. Inozemtsev]. Moscow: Europe Publ. House. 2010. P. 91-102. (In Russ.)

Moore D.Ch. Is the Post- in Postcolonial the Post- in Post-Soviet? Toward a Global Postcolonial Critique. – Publications of the Modern Language Association of America. 2001. Vol. 116. No. 1. P. 111-128.

Murzakulova A., Schoeberlein J. The Invention of Legitimacy: Struggles in Kyrgyzstan to Craft an Effective Nation-State Ideology. – Europe-Asia Studies. 2009. Vol. 61. No. 7. P. 1229-1248. https://doi.org/10.1080/09668130903068756

Musikhin G.I. Ocherki po teorii ideologii [Essays on the Theory of Ideologies]. Moscow: Higher School of Economics Publ. 2013. 284 p. (In Russ.)

Muskhelishvili M. Particularistic Democracy: a View from Post-Soviet Georgia. – Polis. Political Studies. 2001. No. 5. P. 29-53. (In Russ.) URL: http://www.politstudies.ru/en/article/2949

Natsional‘nye istorii v sovetskom i postsovetskikh gosudarstvakh. Pod red. K. Aimermakhera, G. Bordyugova [National Histories in the Soviet and Post-Soviet States. Ed. by K. Aimermakher, G. Bordyugov]. Moscow: AIRO-XX Publ. 1999. 445 p. (In Russ.)

Pantin I.K. Sud’by demokratii v Rossii [The Fate of Democracy in Russia]. Moscow: Institute of Philosophy, RAS. 2004. 194 p. (In Russ.)

Pastukhov V.B. Restavratsiya vmesto reformatsii. Dvadtsat’ let, kotorye potryasli Rossiyu [Restoration Instead of Reformation. Twenty Years That Shook Russia]. Moscow: OGI Publ. 2012. 526 p. (In Russ.)

Roeder Ph.G. Soviet Federalism and Ethnic Mobilization. – World Politics. 1991. Vol. 43. No. 2. P. 196-232. https://doi.org/10.2307/2010471

Rossiya v poiskakh ideologii: transformatsiya tsennostnykh regulyatorov sovremennykh obshchestv. Pod red. V.S. Mart’yanova [Russia in Search of Ideologies: Transformation of Value Regulators of Modern Societies. Ed. by V. Mart’yanov]. Moscow: Politicheskaya entsiklopediya Publ. 2016. 331 p. (In Russ.)

Ryabov A. The Time Stopped. – Profil’. 2016. No. 45 (978). P. 8-11. (In Russ.)

Ryazanova S. Political Mythology in Present-Day Uzbekistan. – Rossiya i musul’manskii mir. 2010. No. 8. P. 75-87. (In Russ.)

Shnirel’man V.A. Voiny pamyati: mify, identichnost’ i politika v Zakavkaz’e [Memory Wars: Myths, Identity and Politics in Transcaucasia]. Moscow: Akademkniga. 2003. 245 p. (In Russ.)

Slezkine Y. The USSR as a Communal Apartment, or How a Socialist State Promoted Ethnic Particularism. – Slavic Review. 1994. Vol. 53. No. 2. P. 414-452. https://doi.org/10.2307/2501300

Solov’ev A.I. Politicheskaya ideologiya [Political Ideology]. – Politologiya: leksikon. Pod red. A.I. Solov’eva [Political Science: Lexicon. Ed. by A. Solovyov]. Moscow: ROSSPEN Publ. 2007. P. 354-364. (In Russ.)

Solzhenitsyn A.I. Kak nam obustroit’ Rossiyu? [How Can We Equip Russia?]. – Solzhenitsyn A.I. Publitsistika: v 3 tomakh [Publicistic Writing in 3 Volumes]. Yaroslavl’: Verkhne-Volzhskoe knizhnoe izdatel’stvo. Vol. 1. 1995. 720 p. (In Russ.)

Starodubrovskaya I.V., Mau V.A. Velikie revolyutsii: ot Kromvelya do Putina [Great Revolutions: From Cromwell to Putin]. Moscow: Vagrius Publ. 2004. 510 p. (In Russ.)

Suny R.G. The Revenge of the Past: Nationalism, Revolution, and the Collapse of the Soviet Union. Stanford: Stanford University Press. 1993. 200 p.

Takane M. Economic Growth and the “End of Ideology” in Japan. – Asian Survey. 1965. Vol. 5. No. 6. P. 295-304. https://doi.org/10.2307/2642127

Tarkhan-Mouravi G. Political Parties in Georgia: The Protracted Formation. – Political Science (RU). 2006. No. 1. P. 243-267. (In Russ.)

Tishkov V.A. Uslozhnyayushchee raznoobrazie: kak ego ponimat’ i uporyadochit’ [Increasing Diversity: How to Understand and Organize It]. – Kul’turnaya slozhnost’ sovremennykh natsii. Otv. red. V.A. Tishkov, E.I. Filippova [Cultural Complexity of Modern Nations. Ed. by V.A. Tishkov, E.I. Filippova]. Moscow: Politicheskaya entsiklopediya. 2016. P. 7-18. (In Russ.)

Tsymburskii V. ZAO “Rossiya” [ZAO “Russia”]. – Russkii zhurnal. 2002. 08.09. (In Russ.) URL: http://old.russ.ru/politics/20020508-tzim-pr.html (accessed 07.07.2017).

Vcherashnee zavtra: kak “natsional’nye istorii” pisalis’ v SSSR i kak pishutsya teper’. Pod red. G. Bordyugova, V. Bukharaeva [Yesterday’s Tomorrow: How “National Histories” Were Written in the USSR and How They Are Written Now. Ed. by G. Bordyugov, V. Bukharaev]. Moscow: AIRO-XXI Publ. 2011. 247 p. (In Russ.) 

Content No. 1, 2018

See also:

Linetsky A.I.,
Russian Idea by Alexander Yanov (Polemical Notes in the Margins of the Same Title Two-volume Monograph). – Polis. Political Studies. 2015. No6

Kulpin E.S.,
The globalizing world and political modernization. – Polis. Political Studies. 2013. No3

Semenenko I.S.,
Nationalism, Separatism, and Democracy. New Patterns of National Identity in “Old” Europe. – Polis. Political Studies. 2018. No5

Makarenko B.I.,
Post-soviet party of power: the «United Russia» in a comparative context. – Polis. Political Studies. 2011. No1

Rabotyazhev N.V.,
Between tradition and utopia: left-wing conservatism in Russia. – Polis. Political Studies. 2014. No4



   2024      2023      2022      2021   
   2020      2019      2018      2017      2016   
   2015      2014      2013      2012      2011   
   2010      2009      2008      2007      2006   
   2005      2004      2003      2002      2001   
   2000      1999      1998      1997      1996   
   1995      1994      1993      1992      1991