A Portrait of a Local Intermediary in Russian Central Asia
Author: Tetsu Akiyama
In The Qїrghїz Baatïr and the Russian Empire Tetsu Akiyama tells the story of Shabdan Jantay uulu (1839/40–1912), a local ruler from the northern Qїrghїz (Kirghiz, Kyrgyz) tribes. Akiyama explores Shabdan’s intermediary role in the Russian Empire’s military advance and rule in southern Semireche’e from the mid-nineteenth to the early twentieth century. Commonly portrayed as a faithful collaborator to Russia, he appears here as a flexible and tough intermediary who made strategic use of Russian dominance for his own ends. Based on a comprehensive study of primary sources, this interdisciplinary monograph dynamically reconstructs Shabdan’s biography, revealing the dilemmas faced by both Russian and Qїrghїz society, which were not only political, but also social, economic, and religious.
History, Societies & Cultures in Eurasia
Historical, socio-cultural, and political studies stretching from Eastern Europe to East Asia with the emphasis on cross-cultural encounter, empires and colonialism, gender and nationalities issues, various forms of Christianity, Islam, Buddhism, and other religions from the Middle Ages to the end of the Soviet Union.

Until Volume 14, the series was published by Brill, click here.
The series published an average of one volume per year over the last 5 years.
Georgian Astrological Texts of the 17th, 18th and 19th Centuries
In Christ Came Forth From India, Timothy Paul Grove offers a survey and contextualiztion of early modern Georgian writings on astrology, astronomy, and cosmology.
These texts include the widely distributed translations of the Almanacco Perpetuo of Ottavio Beltrano (1653), a text brought to the Caucasus by Roman Catholic missionaries, several texts attributed to King Vakht’ang VI of Kartli (1675–1737), and two 19th century manuscripts which incorporate much older material. The numerous Georgian texts are described and examined in terms of their chronology and interrelated content, their literary relationship to texts from outside the Caucasus, and their context within the astrological literature of Europe, the Near East, and the Far East.
Author: Thomas M. Bohn

Abstract

The article adopts an approach to the history of Belarus’, which plays with imaginations. It opens up two vistas concerning the past that are marked by fictional texts. The former belongs to developments before World War I and is connected with a short story by Jakub Kolas, whereas the latter attends to events of World War II and is related to a novel by Jerzy Kosiński. In both cases supplements to the main texts offer insights into Soviet history, on the one hand into the era of revolutionary culture of the 1920s, and on the other hand into the political thaw of the 1950s. The result is an illustration of the metamorphoses that took place in the transitional region of Central and Eastern Europe in the process of Soviet modernization.

In: Journal of Belarusian Studies
In: Journal of Belarusian Studies

Abstract

As extreme dependence of Belarus’s economy on Russian hydrocarbons poses a national security threat, the Belarusian Government decided to mitigate this challenge by constructing a nuclear power plant (NPP) that will cover two fifths of the domestic electricity demand and contribute to increased excess electricity generating capacity for export to the EU. This article assesses a combination of diplomacy and domestic adjustments to develop four scenarios representing the most feasible mechanisms to address the challenges associated with this excess capacity. Having evaluated each scenario’s advantages, drawbacks, costs, and probability, it concludes that, in the current political and diplomatic environment, Belarus will have to consume all its NPP’s energy domestically. This, in its turn, will necessitate significant economic adjustment.

In: Journal of Belarusian Studies
Author: Joanna Getka

Abstract

The dominant axiom of Belarusian historical linguistics holds that the Belarusian literary language was created in the 19th century. According to this perspective, the contemporary Belarusian literary language is a new entity, separate from the old writing tradition. Its supporters therefore sanction the thesis that this writing tradition was broken, despite recent research proving the continuity of the Belarusian language. The present analysis shows that the reproduction of cliches about ‘the breaking of the tradition’ in textbooks used for teaching Belarusian language cause significant cognitive dissonance. Modern conscious Belarusians are building their identity based on the tradition of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, feeling themselves its heirs. The building of a modern identity should, however, incorporate references to language which is an important component of it. The analyzed textbooks contradict this by maintaining that the Belarusian literary language has its roots in the 19th century.

In: Journal of Belarusian Studies
Author: Arnold McMillin

Abstract

The many-sided work of Michaś Skobla (b. 1966) takes a variety of forms, including that of prose writer, critic, editor, anthologist, parodist, translator, radio correspondent and lyric poet. The article aims to outline the main features of his writing, with particular emphasis on his parodies and lyric poetry, in this way showing his central role in the Belarusian literary process of today.

In: Journal of Belarusian Studies
Author: Kirill Petrov

Abstract

The phenomenon of color revolutions has occupied a prominent place in Russian politics for a good reason. The major threat of color revolutions as modern political warfare designed by Western countries deeply affected the political process in Russia since 2005. It may have appeared that the imperative of resisting them was the result of a non-democratic regime reacting to neighboring countries’ uprisings. Some portrayed it as authoritarian learning. This paper suggests that the counteractions stemmed from the interests of disunited Russian elite groups who were seeking opportunities to reinforce their dominance and capitalize on the idea of significant external threats. The phenomenon reshaped the balance within elite groups and led to the consolidation of law enforcement networks on the eve of Putin’s third term. Further, the prevailing perception of color revolutions discouraged any elite splits that could lead to proto-democratic rules.

In: Russian Politics
Author: Emily Look

Abstract

Recent concerns around the declining support for democracy worldwide add urgency to the question of why ordinary citizens desire a democratic system. An emerging theory is democratic knowledge, which argues that knowing more about the rights and liberties provided by a democratic system leads citizens to want democracy as a result. This paper tests this theory in Russia, Ukraine and Belarus, where conventional wisdom suggests that citizens will be less familiar with the features of a democratic system. Using the World Values Survey, it finds that democratic knowledge is a stronger predictor of democratic support than modernization, political learning or political socialization. Moreover, this effect is strongest amongst Ukrainians who grew up in the post-Soviet period, indicating that democratic knowledge is a powerful antidote to the disillusionment that flawed or limited democratization may bring.

In: Russian Politics

Abstract

This article is devoted to the analysis of public support for the contemporary political regime in Russia. The author points out the narrowness, artificiality, and instability of public support for the political regime of Vladimir Putin. Manipulation and bribery are regarded in the article as the main strategies of providing public support for the regime. The author shows that weakness of the Russian economy represents a serious problem for public support for the regime. In the conclusion of the article the author makes a forecast that in the nearest future in Russia are expected mass protests which may lead to the collapse of Vladimir Putin’s political regime.

In: Russian Politics

Abstract

This article addresses the political effects which the multidirectional activity of both the state and civil society institutions have on the voluntary movement. The state seeks to provide support with the purpose of indoctrination, whereas the aim of public organizations is civic activism. The authors of this paper confirm the hypothesis about the direct political impact of these efforts using the evidence of an empirical study of voluntary movements that was conducted in 2019 in the Khanty-Mansi Autonomous Okrug—Yugra. The authors conclude that just as state support provided to voluntary organizations does not incite the ‘pro-government’ discourse of their actions, so their ‘civil’ origin does not stir up oppositionist attitudes. Moreover, the state’s efforts to indoctrinate or block political socialization can trigger the opposite response, where volunteers start to act opportunistically and non-profit public organizations, designed to be the mainstay of civil society, can easily be transformed into agents of state policy.

In: Russian Politics

Abstract

The Russian Constitutional Court (RCC) has over time developed a practice of adopting so-called “Positive inadmissibility decisions” (Pozitivnoe Opredelenie) which complements (but also undermines) the existent formal procedure of only delivering decisions on merits with Judgments (Postanovlenie). The paper explores the uses of this peculiar practice. I show that the Positive inadmissibility doctrine is used by the Court to overcome the rigidity of the formal procedure where this is necessary for reasons of inter- or intra-organizational expediency. To do that I construct and analyze quantitatively a unique comprehensive dataset of all decisions handed down by the RCC in 1995–2015. I show that “Positive inadmissibility decisions” are handed whenever a subpar case is deemed too important to be simply dismissed: in particular, if it is submitted by a powerful petitioner, or when the case is assigned to a longer serving member of the Court for judicial report.

In: Russian Politics
In: Southeastern Europe
In: Christ Came Forth from India
In: Christ Came Forth from India
In: Christ Came Forth from India
In: Christ Came Forth from India
In: Christ Came Forth from India
In: Christ Came Forth from India
In: Christ Came Forth from India
In: Christ Came Forth from India
In: Christ Came Forth from India
In: Christ Came Forth from India