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Russia between East and West

Scholarly Debates on Eurasianism

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Edited by Dmitry Shlapentokh

Throughout most of Russian history, two views of who the Russians are have dominated the minds of Russian intellectuals. Westerners assumed that Russia was part of the West, whilst Slavophiles saw Russia as part of a Slavic civilization. At present, it is Eurasianism that has emerged as the paradigm that has made attempts to place Russia in a broad civilizational context and it has recently become the only viable doctrine that is able to provide the very ideological justification for Russia’s existence as a multiethnic state. Eurasians assert that Russia is a civilization in its own right, a unique blend of Slavic and non-Slavic, mostly Turkic, people.
While it is one of the important ideological trends in present-day Russia, Eurasianism, with its origins among Russian emigrants in the 1920s, has a long history. Placing Eurasianism in a broad context, this book covers the origins of Eurasianism, dwells on Eurasianism’s major philosophical paradigms, and places Eurasianism in the context of the development of Polish and Turkish thought. The final part deals with the modern modification of Eurasianism. The book is of great relevance to those who are interested in Russian/European and Asian history area studies.