Contents and abstracts

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The Ukrainian Junction

Leonid E. Grinin. The Ukrainian state as an uncompleted political project: the past and the present (рр. 5–37).

Many hard-to-explain facets of current Ukrainian foreign and domestic policy are related to the aspects of Ukraine’s state formation. These factors and their role at various stages of the Ukrainian history are investigated in this paper.

Keywords: Ukraine, statehood, territory, culture, language, separateness, policy.

Vitalyi Yu. Darenskiy. Regional mental types in the Ukraine as a source of conflict (рр. 38–55).

In today’s Ukraine one observes an evident psycho-social strife. This conflict has been exacerbated by regionalism. The author discusses the social-historical context of modernization in Ukraine’s regions. Under the Russian Empire and the USSR there was intensive development of cities and industry in eastern Ukraine, while modernization in western Ukraine was related to Ukrainian nationalism (the “Ukrainian Idea”). It seems that the present conflict might be overcome through a general reconceptualization of the Eurasian social, economic and cultural environment under new conditions of multipolar world development.

Keywords: mentality, conflict, Ukraine, modernity, tradition, regional types, “the Ukrainian Idea”, Donets Basin.

Andrey V. Korotayev. Possible psycho-economic factors of the 2014 Ukrainian revolution (рр. 56–74).

The period of very fast economic growth observed in Ukraine between 2000 and 2008 led to an equally fast growth in expectations. The Ukrainian citizens (especially in the south-eastern part of the country) expected a rapid economic growth to resume with Yanukovich's victory in the 2010 presidential elections, as it occurred during his previous years as the premier (2003–2004 and 2006–2007). Against the background of stagnating per capita income, these hopes were bound to lead to an increase in the gap between the expected and the available, which, according to Davies’ J-curve model, produces mass frustration and political aggression.

Keywords: revolution, Ukraine, Yanukovich, Davies J-curve, psychology, economics, destabilization, economic growth, crisis, demographic structural theory, inequality, poverty.

Histories of the Future

Akop P. Nazaretyan. “National idea”: Russia in global scenarios of the 21st century (рр. 75–91).

A series of independent calculations have predicted that around the mid-twenty-first century an abrupt phase transition is expected, the one that will make the civilization’s advances rather difficult. The present tensions in world geopolitics and the sustainability of human civilization are discussed. The author argues that Russia may play a stabilizing role in the 21st century and compares it to the role the Soviet Union played in the 20th century. He discusses the relevant corrections in conceptual, political and information sectors that could contribute to such national and global stabilization.

Keywords: Mega-History, the twenty-first century, polyfurcation, attractors, geopolitics, system, sustainability, Russia, national idea, patriotism, cosmopolitism, messianism.

Gennady L. Apanasenko. Planetary evolution and human health (рр. 92–101).

The humanity is facing a public health crisis. The significance of this problem has not yet been sufficiently recognized or addressed by either the general public or by scientists. The problem is socially manifested in larger elderly populations, a decrease in natural fertility and reproduction, an epidemic of chronic noninfectious diseases, etc. These are the consequences of reducing sustainability of the non-equilibrium system (living matter) caused by the mitochondrial insufficiency of cells. Individual problems lead to social problems, and therefore, they impact the Homo sapiens species and its current stage of social evolution.

Keywords: society, evolution, thermodynamics, health, chronic noninfectious diseases, aging regime, mitochondrial insufficiency.

Conceptions of History

Eduard E. Shultz. The reasons of revolutions: “Head or purse?” (рр. 102–119).

Why do revolutions occur? The author analyzes the hypotheses that have been proposed over the last three hundred years and discusses contemporary approaches.

Keywords: revolution, theory, sociology, reason.

Nikolai S. Rozov. Historical polemics in Russia: Cultural sociology and mental dynamics (рр. 120–138).

Political and ideological struggle in Russia today employs many historical references in its rhetoric. Advocates from all sides often cite well-known events to gain public support. The author describes an approach that provides for the integration of historical references, the one that includes the search for consensus of facts, theoretical explanations, macro-social paradigms, and historical interpretations.

Keywords: history, politics, epistemology, ideology, mental dynamic, integration, fact, explanation, interpretation, paradigm.

Social-Psychological Surveys of History

Esma A. Gurgulia. Metamorphoses of identity in the imperial context (рр. 139–146).

Social mobility can be observed not only in democratic countries of the Old World. Slaveholding states and empires also provide extraordinary examples of upward and downward mobility. Among these examples one can name Hayreddin al-Tunisi (1825–1890) from the highland village of Bambora (Abkhazia). An orphan who was sold as a slave at the Istanbul marketplace, he rose to graduate from the military academy, became a brigadier general, a minister of the Tunisian navy, an author of constitutional reforms, and Grand Vizier of the Ottoman Empire.

Keywords: slavery, Abkhazia, Hayreddin al-Tunisi, bey, constitution, reforms, Istanbul.

Alisa V. Tolstokorova. Traveling between the past and the present. Reflections on a book by Edith Gowing – Edith and I: On the trail of an Edwardian traveler in Kosovo (2013) (рр. 147–150).

This book by an English anthropologist Edith Gowing tells us the story of Edith Durham and women’s tourism as a form of gender emancipation in the 20th century.

Keywords: travel, Kosovo, travelogue, Edith Durham.

Science and Esoterics

Yuri M. Serdyukov. Near-death experience devoid of quasi-scientific and "esoteric" speculations (рр. 151–170).

The article considers contemporary conceptions of near-death experience (NDE). Particular attention is paid to the psycho-neurological theory of NDE proposed by the Russian-Israeli physician Lev Litvak. He argues against the commonly held theory, which claims that NDE is a psychosis developing during terminal states of consciousness. Instead, he postulates about specific attributes characterizing NDE. The sources of NDE are proposed to be images created by spontaneous brain activity, the most vivid and persistent impressions obtained by the person before clinical death, and basic perinatal matrices.

Keywords: near-death experience (NDE), terminal state of consciousness, clinical death, subjective reality, psyche, image-spatial thinking, oneiric experience.

Scientific Heritage
(Towards the 100th Anniversary of the First World War)

Peter N. Durnovo. Memorandum (рр. 171–191).

In February 1914, Russian statesman Peter Durnovo (1845–1915) wrote a memorandum to Tsar Nicolai II that forewarned him against involving the Russian Empire in the coming European war. The memorial described two scenarios, based on victory or defeat at the front. The author showed that in both cases the Russian Empire was courting disaster. This outstanding document of political analysis advanced the methodology of forecasting in its time.

Keywords: Russia, Germany, England, war, Empire, disruption, nations, Slavs, social democracy, extremists, World War I.

Elena S. Senyavskaya. The trench life in the First World War: A sketch of daily life at the front (рр. 192–219).

Using primary documents (letters, diaries and memoirs), the author reconstructs the Russian army’s daily life at the front during the First World War. This study analyses physical and psychological stress, diet and provisioning, goods and monetary allowances, housing, leisure organization and holidays, sanitary and hygienic conditions, etc. The effectiveness of the Russian army is shown from the point of view of “soldiers sitting in trenches” for whom any transport delay had bad consequences.

Keywords: First World War, Russian army, front daily occurrence, soldier's life, army supply.

Contents and abstracts (pp. 220–222)

Authors of the issue (p. 223)