Vol 16, No 1 (2016)

Cover Page

Full Issue

Theory, Methodology and History of Sociological Research

Terrorism as a slap in the face of the civilized world

Šubrt I., Černý K.


The article summarizes the key scientific approaches to the study of terror in the contemporary world focusing on the concepts of (de)modernization, (de)civilization, and the revival of religious movements with rational economic aims under the slogans of “just war” or “cosmic war” with the forces of evil. The author starts from Norbert Elias’ work on the civilization process and the formation of the modern state as a pacified society to underline that the problem of violence lies outside Elias’ scope, and demonstrate the existing approaches to supplementing his theory with (a) the definition of decivilization trends and the criteria for the identification of decivilization processes; (b) the description of the role and place of brutal violence in modern society; (c) a comprehensive but also heterogeneous picture of terrorism, especially suicide terrorism, i.e. its causes, manifestations and consequences. The author agrees with S.P. Huntington, that we live in a world with an increased risk of conflicts between civilizations and cultural strains rooting in the religious tradition (the re-politicization of religion and religious nationalism are considered attempts to fuse traditional religion with modern politics). Thus, the author concludes that the contemporary terrorism and especially its suicidal form is not only a specific form of (political) struggle, but also - metaphorically speaking - a “slap in the face” of the civilized Western world, an effort to challenge, shake and undermine the stability and the patterns of life in modern society. However, terrorism wants to influence not only the power system of society, but also the collective psyche of large groups and parts of the population to create a sort of theatre of horror with the rationally designed, staged and performed means of violence.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(1):7-19
pages 7-19 views

Ethical identification of the subject, and “techniques of the self” in the works of Michel Foucault

Yatsutsenko Y.V.


We are used to the image of an individual as getting into the social reality created before and without him; however, Michel Foucault questions the genealogy of the modern subject, and states that within a ready-made social reality an individual is not given even to himself. Foucault considers processes and practices of individual self-identification, and modes of subjectivation , i. e. the ways, by which an individual seeks and finds his place in an already and completely configured system of social relations. Foucault develops a specific conceptual tool - “techniques of the self” as sets of representations and practices, by which an individual changes oneself and integrates into some ethical systems (of knowledge, rules of behavior, power relations). “Techniques of the self” are purely social, they do not constitute any ethical identity; on the contrary, they provide a socially determined self-identification. Foucault’s “techniques of the self” let us conceptualize the coincidence of the seemingly anonymous processes of governing and individual self-definition; these techniques serve as indicators of individual ethical normalization. Identification of the “techniques of the self” in subjects’ actions helps to define the governing processes not as a violent submission, but as a basic state of the social interaction systems. In order to verify the heuristic potential of the “techniques of the self” concept, the author considers ancient and early Christian models of subjectivation, which Foucault opposed as two ethical models of subject’s access to the “truths”. With the ancient ethical “techniques of the self”, a subject is a full-fledged ethical agent; with the early Christian techniques, he is to accept one’s ontological inability to establish the righteousness based only on one’s personal experience. For example, such an opposition helps to explain differences between tutorship forms and self-control goals.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(1):20-33
pages 20-33 views

Contemporary society: the urgent issues and prospects for development

Identity, non-governmental organizations, and religion in the European integration

Mudrov S.A.


The signing of the Treaty of Maastricht (1992) has strengthened a non-economic component of European integration and has objectively reinforced the position of social constructivism among the theories of European integration. Thus, it has become possible to take into account the role of identity, non-governmental organisations and religion in the process of unification of Europe. The role of religious factors was particularly pronounced in article 17 of the Treaty of Lisbon (2009), which established open and regular dialogue between the European Union (EU) and the Churches. This article emphasises that identity is present in the EU in the form of national and European identities. Religion and values are among the parameters of identity. The role of non-state actors is explained by the desire of the European Commission to strengthen its legitimacy, and by the necessity of wider consultations, in view of growing complexities of the issues at the EU agenda. The role of Churches has been defined by the presence of the above mentioned parameters and by the meaning of religion in history of Europe. Churches contribute to integration as non-state actors and as participants of identity formation. At the same time, Churches are different from other actors, since they have their own ‘agenda’, formed by the moral and theological doctrines. In general, one can note the increasing role and meaning of religious factor at the European level.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(1):34-49
pages 34-49 views

The current Russian model of social development, and economic growth

Paramonov V.V.


Although the Article 7 of the Constitution of Russia adopted in 1993 defines the country as a social state, the contemporary social and economic situation is significantly different from this declaration. The author considers the current situation focusing on the foundations of the welfare state. The indicators of social inequality and stratification that allow to identify the country as a social state prove the widening gap between the rich and poor. In recent years, nothing has been done to achieve the more equitable distribution of income and national wealth, which led to the further growth of social inequality exceeding the global indices. The author believes that the high level of social inequality negatively affects the economic growth. Based on the studies of Russian scientists he concludes that equal distribution of income provides higher rates of economic growth and prosperity of the country. The modified theory of the factors of production explains this interconnection, and adds a few more factors, including such a specific resource as sales market, to three factors introduced by J.B. Say at the beginning of the XIX century. The huge social inequality and, consequently, a significant number of the poor deprive the country of such an important resource. To change the situation, the author proposes to return to the progressive tax scale and introduce the zero rate of income tax for the poorest groups in order to create prerequisites for the growth of consumer demand under the economic crisis.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(1):50-58
pages 50-58 views

Transformation of business values in Russia and Iran: A comparative perspective

Blagova A.S.


The article considers the transformations of business values in Russia and Iran defining the entrepreneurship as a driving force for both economic sphere and social life in general. The author believes that business values can be considered a practical example of the social perception of the state traditional axiological complex. Therefore, on the basis of statistical data of the international research center «GlobeScan», independent sociological Fund «Public Opinion», and analytical organization “Levada Center” the author studies the causes for the Russian society rejection of entrepreneurial values. The article presents the business values of the Islamic Republic of Iran in the comparative perspective focusing on the history of economic system reorganization in accordance with the principles of «tawhid economy» («economy of divine harmony») in order to reduce the vulnerability of the national economy under the globalization values and trends. The author analyzes business activities of Islamic funds («bonyad») as instruments of the state for promoting the necessary set of values, and explains the division of business according to the degree of European values acceptance depending on the affiliation with various political forces.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(1):59-71
pages 59-71 views

Actualization of the intercultural dialogue in the Internet

Lipatova M.E., Bogatyreva A.A.


The article considers the main directions of the intercultural dialogue in the Internet. Based on the analysis of the nature of intercultural communication in the Internet the authors identify features that characterize the Internet as a tool for intercultural communication providing its users wide opportunities for implementing the idea of intercultural dialogue. The authors analyze new types and forms of communication that change and improve the cross-cultural interaction in the Internet; the online network communities that turn to be the continuation and a new dimension of traditional structures of social and cultural life, and represent a special socio-cultural space, in which the existing social reality transforms and develops into a new form of everyday life. The article considers different approaches to the study of the current role of the Internet as a means of intercultural communication, including the specifics of the Russian Internet in achieving this goal; the resources of intercultural dialogue, in particular visual communication as a nowadays tool for intercultural communication in the Internet. The authors show the widest range of possibilities for the dialogue provided by various social networks today - these resources can act as both a platform for communication of large social groups and a service for correspondence between individuals.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(1):72-84
pages 72-84 views

Elections to the European Parliament through the prism of social media as an electoral resource

Katkina A.N.


The article considers the social media as a relatively new tool for electoral and political activities for creating a positive image of political parties and candidates (on the example of the European Parliament). The social media are becoming increasingly important in the nowadays world politics due to the growing number of the Internet users, the fall in the popularity of traditional media, and the fast spread of new media as well as the transformation of the Internet into the area for active political actions. The key role in the formation of the political image belongs to political institutions (parties, government agencies), certain politicians and public figures, as well as to representatives of the electorate, i.e. population. The analysis of the efforts of various political actors in the social media allows to identify their three basic functions: a tool to increase voter turnout; a tool to increase the popularity of candidates and parties; a tool to increase public awareness of the political and electoral processes in general. Currently the most serious obstacle for strategic studies of social networks is the tremendous pace of their technological development that complicates long-term predictions in the field. However, despite the lack of universally accepted criteria for assessing the efficiency of political activities in the social media, the author believes that the key success factor is the so-called “permanent presence” of electoral subjects in the Internet.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(1):85-91
pages 85-91 views

Surveys, experiments, case studies

Career and technical education system: Estimates and opinions of the graduates

Gasparishvili A.T.


The article is based on the results of the project “Education, labor market and social behavior of the youth under the current economic situation”, in which the sociological study of the professional orientations and plans of the Russian career and technical schools graduates was conducted. The graduates explained their reasons for the career choice, and what factors influenced such a decision, discussed their plans after graduation, expressed their opinions on the quality of education and the educational level necessary to be successful in life. According to the research data, the graduates aim to pursue a higher education degree to become more competitive in the labor market. For most of them, the career and technical education system is an intermediate, “secondary” step in the planned life trajectory. The research data also show significant differences in the motives of certain groups, for instance, students of medical and pedagogical colleges are more committed to the moral values of serving the society than those who plan to work in the commercial sector, service sector, etc. Thus, the data of the study is useful for planning and changing the state and departmental policies in both career and technical education and higher education.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(1):92-110
pages 92-110 views

Problems and prospects for the future career: “Public and municipal administration” students’ estimates

Muhametzhanova V.S., Ivlev E.A.


In recent years, in Russia both official and media discourses have emphasized the need to modernize, optimize and reform the institutions of public and municipal administration as basic means of socio-economic and political development of the country. Unfortunately, quite often different organizational forms within the system of social management encounter not only institutional or objective obstacles, but also subjective problems determined by the “quality” of human resources. For decades, the concept “official” in the Russian public opinion retains its negative connotations; at the same time, the corresponding professions are extremely attractive for the younger generations as a guarantee of not high income, but rather of a stable financial and social status. The authors compare the results of two surveys conducted in 2011 and 2015 on the samples of “public and municipal administration” students in the Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia to reveal if they are committed to the stereotypes of mass consciousness on the problems and prospects of the state and municipal employees as a professional group with specific formal and informal corporate rules and requirements, which tends to remain closed for a common man. The authors recognize the limits for comparing two surveys data due to the modification of the questionnaire; however, they identify a number of important trends in the future state and municipal employees’ perception of ethical requirements, public expectations and claims to their work.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(1):111-129
pages 111-129 views

Social responsibility of small and medium-sized business in Russia

Neverov A.V., Davydenkova E.S.


Corporate social responsibility has become an important part of business activities of many organizations. Despite the fact that the corporate social responsibility as an institutionalized organizational management process has existed for more than 50 years, it has not yet received the deserved scientific attention, and its various aspects are still subject to debates. Given that small and medium-sized business organizations play an important role in the socio-economic development of the country, such a problem can become a significant barrier for increasing the efficiency of interaction of main actors and stakeholders of business activities in the country. Thus, it is crucial to study the priorities of small and medium-sized organizations in the corporate social responsibility field. The authors conducted an empirical exploratory study of the Russian small and medium-sized business organizations and found out that their representatives do not have a clear understanding of the directions and methods of implementing the social responsibility model. For instance, the standards developed for large organizations to implement the ideas of corporate social responsibility are too global and too costly for small and medium-sized businesses, however the latter in Russia still do not have their own technologies and algorithms for implementing an appropriate model of social responsibility (except for some types of charity and requirements to retrain workers, which are considered rather external claims).

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(1):130-140
pages 130-140 views

Sociology of management

Rationalizing social technologies

Scherbina V.V.


The article considers the problem of defining the specifics and types of social technologies (hereinafter ST). The author pursues the following objectives: first, to clarify the specific features of social technologies; second, to identify the grounds for classifying the existing types of social technologies; third, to describe the basic characteristics (functions, tasks, tools, the scope and limits of application, and ideological bases) of social technologies; fourth, to identify the basic features of one group of social technologies - the rationalizing social technologies (hereinafter RST); fifth, to define the specifics of one of the most important, but poorly studied subtypes of the rationalizing social technologies, which is associated with the task of rationalizing management activities and is denoted by the author as a subtype of the “goal-providing rationalizing management social technologies” (hereinafter GPRMST). Thus, the article attempts to reduce, at least partially, the scale of the chaos that reigns in the theory of social technologies and is particularly evident in the ambiguity of interpretations of social technologies and vague distinctions between different types of social technologies and their specific functions, etc.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(1):141-162
pages 141-162 views

Efficiency of the state youth policy in the Republic of Khakassia

Shigolakova T.B.


The article considers the efficiency of the state youth policy in the Republic of Khakassia in 2010-2013 focusing on the changes in the number of specialists in the field of youth policies, and representatives of public associations that completed the advanced training and retraining programs; on the percentage of young people aged 14 to 30 involved in volunteer activities and projects for promoting ideas of patriotism, civil responsibility and tolerance, as well as in business activities and student groups; on the number of projects and programs submitted for the grant competition of the Government of the Republic of Khakassia in the field of youth policies; and on the measures to support talented young people, etc. The author identifies key indicators to assess the situation in the different spheres of the youth policy in terms of its focus and priorities. For instance, to evaluate the efficiency of measures to combat drug abuse and illegal drug trafficking we are to compare the annual numbers of young people involved in activities to prevent drug abuse, and to consider the dynamics of decrease of drug trafficking; to evaluate the efficiency of crime prevention, and maintaining security and public order we are to consider the rates of crimes committed by minors and young people; to assess the development of innovative, scientific and applied activities we are to check the dynamics of the number of young researchers involved in such activities, as well as the number of scientific schools in Khakassia, etc.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(1):163-174
pages 163-174 views

Sociological lectures

Contradictions and conflicts of the contemporary Russian education

Akulich M.M.


The article considers the contradictions and conflicts of the contemporary Russian education focusing on the opportunities for conflict management. The research is based on the institutional and system approaches, in particular on the sociological conceptions of social conflict and social cohesion. The author conducted a historical and sociological analysis of social conflicts and social cohesion in the educational sphere, and such conflicts seem to be the result of the contradictions inherent in this social institution. The article identifies basic types of conflicts in the Russian education, and the ways of resolving them by the subjects of the educational system for such conflicts are manageable, especially within the interaction of educational system and society. To verify the proposed typology of conflicts in the contemporary Russian education the author conducted an empirical study to develop a system of practical measures that will help to improve the quality of learning of pupils and students, and will have a positive impact on the functioning and development of the contemporary Russian society. Thus, the article may be useful to sociologists, teachers, educational managers and readers interested in the specifics of social conflicts and the ways for resolving conflict situations.

RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(1):175-188
pages 175-188 views


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RUDN Journal of Sociology. 2016;16(1):207-208
pages 207-208 views

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