The Russian Sociological Review, 2017 (3) en-us Copyright 2017 Sat, 30 Sep 2017 23:54:57 +0300 Экономическое развитие, социально-политическая дестабилизация и неравенство Еще М. Олсон и С. Хантингтон предположили, что обнаруженная ими для слабо- и среднеразвитых стран положительная корреляция между подушевыми доходами и уровнем социально-политической нестабильности может частично объясняться ростом экономического неравенства по мере экономического развития в этих странах. Проведенная нами серия эмпирических тестов в общем и целом подтвердила обоснованность этой гипотезы. Вместе с тем наши тесты обнаружили и достаточно определенные пределы этого объяснения. Тесты выявили для экономически слабо- и среднеразвитых стран хоть и статистически значимую, но не слишком сильную положительную корреляцию между ВВП на душу населения и уровнем экономического неравенства. Между тем, ранее для этих же стран нами были выявлены заметно более сильные положительные корреляции с подушевым ВВП по некоторым важнейшим компонентам социально-политической дестабилизации, таким как интенсивность политических убийств, политических забастовок и антиправительственных демонстраций. Вполне очевидно, что сильно выраженную среди слабо- и среднеразвитых стран тенденцию к росту интенсивности этих компонентов социально-политической дестабилизации по мере экономического роста при помощи заметно более слабо выраженной тенденции к росту экономического неравенства можно объяснить в любом случае лишь в высшей степени частично. Кроме того, проведенные нами эмпирические тесты позволяют предполагать наличие на шкале индекса экономического неравенства Джини порогового значения в районе 40 пунктов, после прохождения которого наблюдается тенденция к скачкооброзному росту социально-политической дестабилизации в целом, и интенсивности террористических актов/«партизанских действий» и антиправительственных демонстраций в особенности. По данным Всемирного банка, Россия по данному показателю находится как раз в этой зоне, что заставляет предполагать, что дальнейший рост экономического неравенства в нашей стране может привести к скачкообразному росту политической нестабильности. Young Towns: Scaling Sites of Memory It has been assumed to regard young towns built during Soviet times as possessing only a “short history”. To deal with the sites of memory of such settlements, an especial research approach is elaborated integrating both theoretical resources of memory studies and scale studies. According to this approach, sites of memory are analyzed as a), in temporal and space coordinates, and b), from the perspective of “ordinary” people. Two groups of scales, 1) worldwide and national, and 2) regional and urban, are considered as the materials of the empirical research in the four young Ural towns of Kachkanar, Krasnoturinsk, Lesnoy, and Zarechny. The main methods of data-gathering were go-along interviewing and photo mapping. The data sources include the archives of the local, regional, and central printed presses, archival documents including minutes of Communist Party meetings, the official website of each town, and others. As our research has shown, the most time-depth, up to centuries and millennia, is characteristic of the sites of memory on a regional scale; in other cases, memory extends no further than the biography of two or three generations. Large scales provide the residents of small settlements with a portal to the big world, helping them to feel a connectedness with other cities and countries. Local-scale sites of memory symbolically unites people in a single community, allowing a shared perception of space and local competence. In conclusion, the analytical traps inherited from the original concepts are discussed as well as the opportunities to overcome them and the prospects for further research, such as the study of scaling as a process, coming from above and below, purposefully and spontaneously, or formally and informally. Of particular interest are the scales intersections, the slip of the sites of memory on the scales, and the fixing by the effects of understatement and exaggeration of scale (scale-ups and scale-downs). Friendship as a Practice in Distinction (an Example of the Intellectual Milieu of Yekaterinburg) The paper examines specific manifestations of friendship relationships in the contemporary Russian intellectual milieu. It aims to re-conceptualize the notion of friendship as a social-aesthetic phenomenon, that is, as an ensemble of practices of distinction guided by social tastes. The goal of this reconceptualization is to separate friendship from a powerful theoretical tradition where it is related to the idea of the common good, social integration, and the public sphere, and to offer an alternative view of friendship as a selective practice. The selective and exclusive aspects of friendship are not articulated in the discourse, but are widely present at the level of everyday practices. Based on deep semi-structural interviews with a number of intellectuals of Yekaterinburg, such practices as rapprochement/keeping a distance, building and protecting symbolic boundaries, and emotional involvement in communication have been analyzed. Friendship relations in the intellectual milieu differ by the degree of openness/closeness, and by the degree of the instrumentality/symbolic functions. The analysis allows for the questioning of the uncritical usage of the concept of “community” and for replacing it with the model of “web of friends” or “circles of friends”, with more or less stable symbolic borders that separate different social styles. The solidarity that emerges during the communication between friends is a result of the sensible recognition of the others, and does not refer to a higher level of communities (such a gender, class, profession, and so on). In this context, friendship can be understood both critically, as an exclusive social practice, and positively, as a unique good that has an antidemocratic nature and can not be reduced to any sort of common good. The Russian Revolution as an Experimental Refutation of Socialism: Max Weber’s Version Max Weber was one of the first social scientists to give a critical analysis of the socialist experiment in Russia from 1917 to 1920. The fundamental importance of this segment of Weber’s heritage today is that Weber makes his interpretation of the 1917 Russian Revolution not only from a practical-polemical standpoint, but also from a theoretical-sociological one. The main focuses in the article are Weber’s analysis of the Russian revolution from the point of view of the practical results of Bolshevik policies, and his comparison of the policies of the Bolsheviks during the Russian Revolution and Civil War of 1917–1920 with the doctrinal propositions of Marxist socialism. The article also deals with Weber’s thesis of the unavoidable bureaucratization of socialist society, and with his comparative analysis of the market and the planned economy. In conclusion, we formulate the idea of the heuristic potential which Weber’s analysis of the experience of the practical implementation of socialism in Russia might have for contemporary studies of the history of Soviet society. Life Conduct: A Systematic Sketch in the Context of Max Weber’s Research Program The article focuses on one of Max Weber‘s central concepts known in German as Lebensführung(i.e., life conduct, though often mistakenly translated as life style in English). The author of this article begins with a rather paradoxical statement that this key concept remained without either a strict definition or a detailed elaboration in Weber’s sociology. He demonstrates the importance of lifefor Weber’s scientific research program, putting it into the complex context of the intellectual history at the turn of the century where the German Neo-Kantianism of the Baden School, philosophical anthropology, and the philosophy of life played significant roles. He continues with the reconstruction of the functional place of Lebensführungamong the analytical tools Max Weber applied in his studies of Western rationalization, understood as a process of the total disenchantment of the world. Müller distinguishes between three main aspects of the rationalization of life in the situation of Modernity: the scientific-technological, the metaphysically-ethical, and the practical forms of modern rationality. He points to the poly-semantical meaning of Lebensführung, while, at the same time, noticing that there is no special attention paid to the concept in current studies of the forms and styles of life. After a concise analysis of similar problems, he in turn formulates ten different forms of Lebensführung in the globalized world, proper to the people in Western countries. These forms are related to trans-nationality, laborization, flexibilization, project-based activity, acceleration, instability, creativity, social control, digitalization, and reflexivity. In conclusion, from his analysis, he draws far-reaching consequences regarding the heuristic capacity and operationalization opportunities of Max Weber’s concepts. “Pro-disciplinary” and “Anti-disciplinary” Networks in Late Soviet Society This article is aimed at revealing a kind of methodological narrowness in the descriptions of social networks in Soviet society. In sociological research, the term “social network” usually refers to a complex of close and distant acquaintances that connect people in a certain geographical locality, and/or in a certain social cluster. However, if regarding the studies of Soviet and post-Soviet society, sociologists and political scientists usually use this term referring to the networks of corruption, coat-tails, a shady economy, etc., that “corrode” modern social and political institutes, hindering modernization. These can also refer to the secret networks of samizdat and dissidence in the 1960–70s. All of these networks can be defined as “anti-disciplinary”. Apparently, in both the late Soviet and post-Soviet societies, networks of different types existed, and examples of these are described in the article. Nevertheless, all other networks aside from the “anti-disciplinary” ones are studied significantly less, and were never studied systematically. There are at least two types of causes that have entailed this “blind spot”. The “hidden” networks in the late Soviet and post-Soviet societies were and are of great political significance and of a specific organization; thus, they are considered as structures unavoidable for the understanding of Russia’s social dynamics and power relations. Secondly, Soviet society was based on a very complicated combination of modernizing and “archaizing” trends. This tension can be designated as “conservative modernization”, as coined by the demographer Anatoly Vishnevsky. A study of the interrelation between “pro-disciplinary” and “anti-disciplinary” networks demands a reconsideration of some the basic theses of the theory of social networks. Here, I use Harrison White’s theory in order to demonstrate the limits of its applicability to late Soviet society. “I Still Exist!”: Late Soviet Cinema Through the Prism of the Relational Sociology of Harrison White (Et Vice Versa) The article is devoted to the popular Soviet cinema of the 1970s and 1980s, and examines the prevalent modes of the representation of social identity and social interaction in the culture of late socialism. The author selected the relational sociology of Harrison White as her theoretical framework. Attention is primarily paid to White‘s concept of identity. He associates identity with the seeking of control, and attaches a crucial meaning to the process of switching between different “netdoms”; in the process; an interiorization of the “social noise” (contradictory, inconsistent, and without corresponding social roles and images of social reality) is inescapable. Based on White’s theory, the author of the article concludes that such a process was extremely hindered in the conditions of a totalitarian society when an attempt of political monopolization of control was undertaken. The Stalin-era official narrative implied the elimination of any “social noises”, that is, any contradictions between the various domains of Soviet life and the adjusted anthropology of Soviet man, who is obliged to be absolutely identical to himself (and to the normative prescriptions) in different contexts. At the same time, the destruction of the horizontal ties and the increasing social atomization had a place in the pre-narrative levels the of social reality, so the mechanism of switching could not have been sufficiently operative as well. The article demonstrates that in post-totalitarian late Soviet cinema which arose after the dissolution of the canons of the Stalinist “Grand Style”, the forms of representation of social domains became substantially more complicated, but the mechanism of switching between them seems to be broken. This was reflected in the fact of the conglutination of different contexts of the social interaction (“formal” and “informal”, for example), the vagueness of the role and interpersonal boundaries peculiarly longing for the “authentic self”, and the regular escaping from the role interaction to the imaginary spaces of dream, reminiscences, etc. Editorial Ethnomethodological Studies of Visuality The article considers how ethnomethodology (EM) studies visuality. Historically, there were four approaches to visuality in EM, those of visuality as observable activity, as images, as practices of vision, and as language constructions. Harold Garfinkel’s idea of witnessability implies that the phenomena of order exist in observable methods of their production. Observability, or witnessability, at this point can be an equivalent for visuality because it suggests an opportunity to be studied with visual methods. In such a case, any ethnomethodological study is a visual study because it implies a description of observable methods of order production. Besides this idea of observability, three separate projects of visual research were developed in EM from 1980s to the 1990s by Michel Lynch, Charles Goodwin, and Jeff Coulter. They all tried to present the practical approach to visual perception (in contrast with perception as an individual psychological process), but found solutions in studying different aspects of visuality, which were images, practices of seeing, and language constructions describing different modes of perception. This text considers the relationships between the three conceptions and Garfinkel’s initial idea of observability. It analyzes ideas which Lynch, Goodwin, and Coulter added to Garfinkel’s ethnomethodological program, and shows how other ethnomethodologists use these additions. The article demonstrates that together they produced EM’s approach to visuality, although none of these projects were completely realized inside EM. It is based on Garfinkel’s idea of observability, supplemented by the opportunity to study perception as a practical social achievement situated in local interactional contexts. Ethnomethodology of Videogames: Phenomenal Field in Game Practice The paper describes a program for the research of video games in the ethnomethodological perspective. The core of the program is represented by the concept of “phenomenal field” which highlights a number of topics significant for studying gamers’ real experience, that is, the gamer’s phenomenal field, the virtual world phenomena, the interface phenomena, the everyday phenomena, the figure and background of the phenomenal field, and the projection. The program is based on the empirical researches which provided a detailed description of game actions, as well as a step-by-step analysis of their sequences. The problem of the phenomenal field in game practices is revealed through the analysis of three common types of situations encountered by gamers. The first type is related to the coordination of gamers’ actions in network multiplayer games, and to the role of verbal communication in this coordination. The materials from several game episodes illustrates the importance of other gamers for the organization of the gamer’s phenomenal field. The second type of situation relates to the interaction of the gamer and the interface. The analysis of the activities of two different characters within one game shows how the work with the interface can differ depending on the specific features of a character and the details of the situation. The third type of situation is related to the problem of the coordination of game actions in the physical and virtual worlds. The analysis demonstrates the way in which the gamer can switch between three different types of objects, those of the objects of the virtual world, of the game interface, and of the world “on this side of a monitor”. The analyses of these examples allows for the statement that the program of ethnomethodological studies based on the detailed empirical analysis makes it possible to reveal the phenomenological mechanics of video games. The Production of Order during Rap Battles: Managing Pauses and Their Absences This article is the first ethnomethodological study of rap battles. The materials for analysis are videos of battles published on the YouTube-channel of Versus Project. In the article, rap battles are analyzed in accordance with the principles of conversion analysis as a speech-exchange system. Some methods of creating and re-creating the order of rap battles are discussed. Here, “order” does not mean following the formal rules, but the situational achievement of the participants in the situation. Attention is drawn to the mechanisms of restoring order in situations of occurrence of a failure: silence, interruption, and the overlapping of turns. Examples of restoring order both by the battle rappers and by other participants in the situation (the organizer, the judges, and the public) are given. There are reported similarities and differences in the methods of re-creating order in both rap battles and everyday conversations. These battles are also analyzed as a form of institutional interaction, which has its own special features. The analysis shows how the reflexivity of the participants in the situation makes the institutional interaction without following the rules precisely possible, because the reflexivity of the participants allows the changing the rules depending on the situation without the occurrence of a failure in the order. A distinction is made between the reflexivity of the public and the reflexivity of individual members of the public. The obtained results can be useful for further ethnomethodological studies of interaction with the public, other forms of institutional interaction, as well as for studying everyday conversations. The Philosopher and the State: Hannah Arendt on the Philosophy of Socrates My paper provides a critical analysis of the epistemic, moral, social, and political implications of Arendt’s view of the Socratic method. In both her earlier (1954) and later (1974) lectures on Socrates, Arendt depicts him as a thinker who overcomes the gap between the contemplative life of a philosopher and the life of an active citizen. Arendt contrasts the Socratic dialog of equal opinions which takes place between friends with the Platonic monologue of a teacher delivering the truth to his students. Despite some significant flaws in her opposition of Socrates and Plato, her view proves to be a useful leitmotif connecting her lectures with several of her main works, those of “The Human Condition”, “On Revolution”, and “Eichmann in Jerusalem.” Arendt uses her picture of Socrates as a supporting argument in her analysis of the public role of opinion, of the distinctive traits of the inner dialog, and of the connection between thinking and action. Although Arendt does not give a direct answer to the question of the usefulness of Socrates’ actions for Athens and remains sceptical regarding the possibility of philosophical thinkers to influence the social life, she provides valid arguments in favor of the necessity of the Socratic method in the case of a crisis of collective values. Her conclusions allow us to use her interpretation in modern debates on conservatism, on the re-evaluation of differences between the private and the public sphere, and on the public role of opinion in light of the development of new forms of communication. The Logic of Methodology (On the Publication of “The Logical Prerequisites of the Methodology” by Nikolay Kareev) The purpose of the article is the research of the unpublished methodological scientific work of the Russian historian Nikolay Kareev, called the The General Methodology of the Humanities. This book was written in 1922, but was not published due to censorial restrictions. The text solved different problems of the humanities from the point of view of positivism. In an historiographical aspect, it has some continuity with the course “The Methodology of the History” by Alexander Lappo-Danilevsky, who taught it at the University of Petrograd (after the death of Lappo-Danilevsky in 1919, it was planned to pass this course to Kareev). However, the General Methodology is an original course, written from the different standpoints of Lappo-Danilevsky. This article consists of the introduction and a published fragment from the General Methodology. This fragment includes the second chapter, which is called “The Logical Prerequisites of the Methodology”. Here, Kareev characterized logic as a condition of any methodology, and considered existing methods of cognition, such as inductive, deductive, comparative, and historical; he talked about scientific laws and their classification; he dwelled on the types of inferences and syllogisms in detail, as well as on common mistakes. In this chapter, Kareev not only dealt with the foundations of logic, but also with the theory of argumentation and the theory of proofs. He formulated the signs of scientific knowledge, those of verifiability, systematic, and completeness (integrity). We reconstructed the text of these paragraphs according to a monograph by Kareev, which is held in the Research Department of Manuscripts of the Russian State Library. The General of Methodology of the Humanities, Chapter 2: The Logical Prerequisites of the Methodology The focus of the article is the research of the unpublished methodological scientific work by the Russian historian Nikolay Kareev, which is called The General Methodology of the Humanities. This book was written in 1922, but was not immediately published due to censorship restrictions. In it, Kareev described the sphere of humanitarian knowledge, and presented the existence of a holistic research field as a problem of the humanities and describes the principles of its interrelationships. As well, he put the need to develop a common methodology for scientific research as a research task, and substantiated the position and methodological tools of history in the humanities. Тhe publication fragment from the General Methodology includes the second chapter, which is called “The Logical Prerequisites of the Methodology”. In this chapter, Kareev characterized logic as a condition of any methodology, considered existing methods of cognition, those being inductive, deductive, comparative, and historical, talked about scientific laws and its classification, and dwelled on the types of inferences and syllogisms in detail, as well as on common mistakes. In this chapter, Kareev dealt not only with the foundations of logic, but also with the theory of argumentation and the theory of proofs. He formulated the signs of scientific knowledge, those of verifiability, systematic, and completeness (integrity). The text solved the different problems of humanities from the point of view of positivism with some elements of neo-Kantianism. Internet Studies in Social Sciences Internet Studies is an interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary field of fundamental and applied research that integrates different research disciplines with a common object, that is, the Internet. This review article gives a definition and a brief description of the structure of Internet Studies as part of the social sciences, and introduces the research agenda of this field, including the most cutting-edge research issues. The agenda of Internet Studies is related to classical sociological issues such as inequality, online communities, and social capital, as well as topics related to the study of transformations in different spheres of society such as politics, public health and medicine, and education, which is analyzed in more detail. Two main theoretical approaches, the network society theory and critical theory of the Internet and society within which the influence of the Internet on society is interpreted, are briefly described. We conclude that the present directions of Internet research often intersect with each other, and that the perspective of a more complete study of the mechanisms that mediate social changes related to the Internet connecting online and offline sociality into a single space opens at these intersections. The Conceptualization of European Modernity in Gerard Delanty’s Sociology In the article, Gerard Delanty’s sociology is analyzed in the context of the development of contemporary social theory and historical sociology. Delanty considers European history in the context of inter-civilizational encounters with the legacies of Antiquity and several religious traditions. He discusses the rise of the European nation-states and, at the same time, the growth of cosmopolitan traits which became more conspicuous by the end of the 19th century. He analyzes the “short 20th century” from the viewpoint of a clash of competing projects of modernity. The situation since 1989 is defined by Delanty as a new stage of European history characterized by the strengthening of the post-national dimension of modernity. At the same time, he considers the trends of crises in the European project. These trends represent the contradictions of modernity, particularly between capitalism and democracy. Delanty also demonstrates the possibility of the application of his theoretical approach to other world regions such as Latin America, where different versions of modernity have been formed. The authors believe that Delanty’s theory is relevant for comparative-historical studies of social processes in Russian society. The (Non)social Construction of Reality in the Age of Mediatization The book The Mediated Construction of Reality by Nick Couldry and Andreas Hepp, published by Polity Press, presents an attempt at reconsidering the classics of social theory, namely Berger and Luckmann’s phenomenology. Half a century after the appearance of The Social Construction of Reality, two renowned media researchers ask new questions about the ways of making and understanding the social world. Today‘s world has become profoundly mediatized, and the social gets increasingly rooted in the technological infrastructure of digital communication. The pervasive mediatization of social life transforms all of its segments on both the micro- and macro-levels. The algorithms of social media and other computer systems quantify and automate social processes which used to be perceived as qualitative. In order to understand this world, social theory has to revise its approaches and basic notions. According to Couldry and Hepp, the classical optics of Berger and Luckmann’s social constructionism is no longer suitable, developing a materialist phenomenology which emphasizes the role of media technologies in constructing the social world. Furthermore, these authors regard the social world as a complex network of figurations, using and adapting the ideas of Norbert Elias. Their work has a pronounced critical purpose: the authors are concerned about the relative autonomy of social life, which is coming under control of technological systems’ imperatives and dictated by their developers’ commercial interests. The time is approaching when the social is no longer constructed in everyday human interactions, but produced by means of various media platforms instead. Nowadays, these platforms provide us with access to the social world and constitute its space. Does this mean the end of the social construction of reality, as well as the end of social constructionism? Sociology of Max Weber: Late, Incomplete, and Timely Book Review: Wolfgang Schluchter. Max Webers späte Soziologie (Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2016). Book Review: Svetlana Sidorova (ed.). Dvizhenie i prostranstvo: paradigma mobil'nosti i poiski smyslov za predelami statichnosti [Mobility and Space: In Quest of Meanings Beyond Stasis] (Moscow: Vostochnaya literatura, 2015) Book Review: Svetlana Sidorova (ed.). Dvizhenie i prostranstvo: paradigma mobil'nosti i poiski smyslov za predelami statichnosti [Mobility and Space: In Quest of Meanings Beyond Stasis] (Moscow: Vostochnaya literatura, 2015) Call for Papers: 19th April International Academic Conferenceon Economic and Social Development, April 10–13, 2018, Moscow