The Russian Sociological Review, 2024 (1) en-us Copyright 2024 Sun, 31 Mar 2024 01:33:36 +0300 Cathectic Mechanisms of Culture. Part 2 The article introduces a new research program that focuses on the constitutive role of emotions, affect, and their intensity in meaning-making. It opposes the existing broad tradition that effectively posits culture as information, sees cultural processes as coding, transferring, and processing information, and treats emotions as a ‘fuel’ feeding these processes in social life. I build this program around the re-interpretation of the concept of ‘cathexis,’ defined as a basic feature of meaning-making that consists in attaching emotions produced in social interactions to various kinds of objects of that meaning-making: things, ideas, representations, symbols, bodies, and their parts; spatial (e.g., pieces of land) and temporal (e.g., events) phenomena. Drawing on the analysis presented in the first part of this article, in this part, I introduce two basic modes of cathectic mechanisms of culture (piety and transgression) and outline five general features of cathexis (persistence, the pharmacy principle, boundary-making, situational spontaneity, and emergence). Based on this program, I review existing research dealing with the emotional dimension of culture. I organize this material into three sub-sections: perception, identity and social change, and ‘energetics’ of social action. I show that using the theory of cathexis as a common denominator empowers existing approaches, puts them on the same board, and moves us to a better understanding of the emotional dimension of culture. I that is We and We that is I: A Defense of Methodological Holism and the Primacy of Collective Agency In a Hegelian spirit, this paper advances a methodological holism based on the ontological primacy of collective agency. The first section sketches the general problematic of methodological and ontological individualism and shows critical points. Two core components are discerned: an atom-like view of individuals as separate and independent from society and a mechanistic pattern of explanation that reduces institutions to interactions of singular individuals. In the second section, I argue in favor of methodological holism by showing that singular individuals are the product of the community in which they are raised. The section demonstrates methodological primacy of the whole through its ‘normative’ causality on individuals’ existence, identity, attitudes and actions. Singular individuals and their actions are rendered possible within and through the whole, taken as a set of institutions and structures. The third part presents a short account of a general individual (We-agent) that is causally effective in a normative and rational way. General individuals have intentionality, mind, personality, interests, etc. of their own that manifest in actions, thoughts and attitudes of singular individuals. General individuals differ from singular individuals by the scope of their interests and goals. General individuals possess intrinsic rationality and normativity that shows a pattern of valid explanation in the manner of methodological holism. Racial Profiling as a Form of Surveillance and Securitizing Practice Racial profiling research is a relatively new, dynamically developing field of knowledge, attracting the growing attention of the scientific community. However, the development of this area is associated with a number of theoretical and methodological problems. In addition to the difficulty of reliably establishing the racial imbalance itself in the law enforcement system using the currently existing methodological approaches, there is the problem of insufficient theoretical understanding of the phenomenon. Criminal justice studies, which traditionally include the study of racial profiling, are not very rich in theoretical approaches. As a rule, they focus on the discrepancy between legally established norms and real practices, and are more descriptive than analytical. In addition, focusing exclusively on the work of the police unnecessarily narrows the research field, leaving behind the scenes actors who are actively involved in the initiation and implementation of racial profiling, but are not directly related to the security field. This article attempts to place the issue of racial profiling within the broader context of the study of surveillance and securitization, using a case study of special controls on people from the Caucasus, Central Asia, Ukraine, and Roma in Russia. The State and the Class in Qajar Iran, 1794-1925 The form of the relationship between the state and social class throughout the history of Iran has always been explained by theories of the ‘Asiatic mode of production’ and ‘Oriental Despotism’. According to these theories, the power of the state is unlimited and it has all classes under its control. Meanwhile, many historical data of the Qajar era question this point of view and represent a situation in which various social forces limit the power of the state. The present article was written in response to the conflict between the theory of the ‘Asian state’ and the historical reality of the Qajar era. The main question of the article is: was the Qajar state limited by the social classes or did it have absolute and supra-class power? In answer to this question, the state classifications of Elman Service, Andrew Vincent, Max Weber, Karl Marx and Samuel Huntington are used. The research method is a historical case study that collects and analyzes data using two documentary methods and pattern matching. The results of the research show that the pattern of “balance, opposition and limitation” is established in the relationship between the state and the social classes of the Qajar era. This pattern can be described according to the classification of states based on the criterion of “accumulation and distribution of power”. It is split into three periods. The first period is characterized as a “patriarchal” state, the second — as a “patrimonial” state, and the third — as a “constitutional” state. The state in the first and second Qajar periods was associated with a low accumulation of power and centralized power distribution, and in the third period, that of post-constitutionality, it took the form of a low accumulation of power and scattered power distribution. Assembly of Experts of the Islamic Republic of Iran: Socio-Demographic and Political Recruitment Factors (1983-2024) The article analyses the socio-demographic and political recruitment factors for the Assembly of Experts of Iran from 1983-2024. The Assembly is an electoral college that has constitutional control over the Supreme Leader of Iran, but does not use its powers. The database comprises 446 observations related to 216 persons during 5 Assemblies since 1983. The research method is a structural-biographical analysis. The results of the research show that the Iranian clergy in the Assembly is relatively stable. However, it changes in the national context regarding the political struggle and the massification of higher education. The effect of political struggle demonstrates the expansion of the share of moderate and reformist clergy, which contrasts with the early domination of the conservative faction only. The share of incumbents is quite high, too: approximately half of the Assembly members have been elected at least twice since the second Assembly; approximately a third of them have been elected at least thrice since the third assembly. The educational clerical origin refers to the seminaries of Qom and Najaf, with the minority from the seminary of Mashhad. Secular education also expands among them, achieving 20% for the fifth Assembly. The most frequent specializations received in secular institutions are law, philosophy, and theology. More than half of the members of the Assembly originate from 9 of 31 provinces only, which may be explained by the patrimonial connections of the Assembly`s leadership. The Katechon as a Theologo-political Paradigm of the World Order The article is devoted to the study of the possibility of representing the world order in theologo-political optics based on the doctrine of the katechon as a force restraining the onset of the end of the world. The heuristic potential of this approach is expressed, firstly, in the demonstration of the world order as a spatio-political projection of katechonic temporality, and secondly, in the reception of political realism in the guise of “political katechonism”. For this purpose, a brief historical and hermeneutic digression into the problem of interpretation of the Second Epistle of the Apostle Paul to the Thessalonians was first carried out and a sketch of conceptual reconstruction was proposed, presenting it as the quintessence of New Testament political realism. The culmination of this tradition is C. Schmitt’s idea of the katechon as a historical force that produces the spatio-temporal order of the Christian empire, the collapse of which led to the transformation of the katechon into a secular security state. The influence of C. Schmitt on the realistic approach to the world order can be traced, in particular, in H. Morgenthau’s perception of the international balance of power systems through the prism of the concept of “the holder of the balance”, which is in reality traced from the concept of “katechon”. The conclusion asserts the idea that there is no alternative in the foreseeable future to the idea of a historical force restraining political anomie on a global scale and delaying the final catastrophe. From this point of view, differing variants of the architecture of the world order do not fundamentally affect its theological (katechonic) foundations. Features of the Worldview of Pediatric Palliative Care Physicians: an Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis Pediatric palliative care is a multidisciplinary branch of medicine and health care that includes both biomedical techniques of patient care and social and psychological practices. At the same time, its goal differs from that of curative approaches in medicine and is predominantly to alleviate patients’ suffering. We used the qualitative method of Interpretative Phenomenological Analysis (IPA), which allows us to uncover the «inside», emotional and existentially significant dimensions of respondents’ personal and intersubjective experiences. This method provides an «insider» perspective of the community under study. The article presents the results of IP. interviews with nine doctors of pediatric palliative care working in the Russian health care system and taking specialized advanced training courses. The goals of the study were to identify the most subjectively significant factors for physicians of palliative care for children, influencing the ethical and communicative aspects of interaction with patients and their parents, and to identify the most important problems and issues of concern to specialists, with an emphasis on worldview. Semi-structured interviews were conducted using a specially designed questionnaire and mainly addressed the topics and issues of worldview of palliative care physicians (including the role of faith and religion) in the context of communication with patients and their parents. As a result, it was found that doctors typically assess their work as a vocation (in a number of cases — with explicitly religious attribution), and this is used by part of the respondents as a justification of their activities in front of a critically minded environment. A common view of a hospice is that of a place that needs to be comfortable, home-like. Subjectively, the majority of respondents evaluate themselves as Orthodox Christians, but emphasize the «non-fanatical» nature of their faith. At the same time, respondents note the significant influence of parental religiosity on communication patterns and acceptance of inevitable disease outcomes. Most respondents noted a high need for a spiritual counsellor in the hospice. Respondents do not necessarily insist that the counsellor be a priest, but his or her figure in the physicians’ descriptions has distinct confessional features. While the Child Sleeps: the Repertoire of "Non-maternal" Practices of Russian Mothers The article is part of a research project dedicated to modern maternal practices in the focus of women’s professional and personal self-realization. As a methodological basis for studying these previously unidentified aspects of the life of women on parental leave, the authors propose the concept of “non-maternal” practices of mothers, understanding it as stable types of a woman’s activities which she implements in a wide range of areas of public life, which are determined by the complex situation of caring for young children and the corresponding changes in her chronotope, communicative positions and economic situation, but are not directly related to caring for her child. Based on the materials of a comprehensive study (a study of young mothers’ accounts in social networks, N=720; 22 motherhood forums; an online survey, N=471; a series of in-depth interviews N=20), the empirical potential of the proposed concept was demonstrated. The repertoire of “non-maternal” practices has also been defined and systematized, and their typology is presented. In particular, the following grounds for the classification of “non-maternity” practices are identified: implementation format (offline, online, mixed), motivation (self-realization, earnings, combating the monotony of maternity days, communication, relieving psychological stress), effect (constructive, destructive, without a pronounced effect ), economic status (neutral, subsidized, investment, spontaneous earnings, regular income, commercial income), professional dynamics (practices corresponding to the main profession or pre-maternity employment; temporary practices that developed during maternity leave; transitive practices leading to a change in professional trajectory), field of activity (education, support for mothers, creativity and the arts, volunteering and social activism, beauty industry, crafts, crop production, sports, real estate, tourism, self-development, computer technology). The proposed optics allow a comprehensive approach to the study of mother’s mechanisms of adaptation, and an analysis of the multi-layered and eclectic nature of normative and factual aspects in the restructuring of their social statuses. The practical meaning of their application lies in the possibility of turning the system of social support for motherhood from subsidized (support for motherhood = social payments) to resource (support for motherhood = reformatting the social environment, taking into account women’s right to subjectivity). Socialization and Choice of Life Strategies by "Second Generation" Migrants in Russia The article is devoted to the integration and the educational strategies chosen by the “second generation” of migrants in Russia. It draws on the results of a study conducted in 2022 among youth from 18 to 35 years old who were born in the families of labor migrants from Central Asia and the Caucasus or who moved to Russia at an early age. I analyze who may be called the “second generation” in Russia today, what characteristics are common for this group, and whether it is possible to apply this concept to all young people from a migrant environment in Russia. It can be inferred that successful socialization of the “second generation” of migrants in school depends on the personal characteristics of teachers and the social capital accumulated over the years by the children themselves. Their educational strategy after school tends to be determined together with their family. Opportunities for further education depend on the material status of the family and their social position in Russian society. While the family has great influence on the choices made by a young man or woman and may constrain them, it also facilitates their social and economic integration into Russian society. Economists and Their Fan-clubs: The Distribution of Recognition in Russian Economic Science What determines whether economists regard their colleagues’ work as “important” or “meaningful”? While the normative answer is that professional recognition is based solely on the quality of published work, the sociology of science has uncovered other, potentially more insidious factors that influence the conferral of recognition. In this paper, we present the results of a reputation survey of 3563 Russian economists, aimed at identifying the factors that predict the nomination of certain figures as “making an important contribution to economic science”. Our analysis reveals that the most significant predictor of recognition is specialization, particularly in relatively autonomous fields classified in Russia as branches of economics (such as accounting and agrarian economics). Votes were predominantly cast for other specialists in the same field, despite the survey request that participants name those who had made important contributions to Russian economics in general. Other factors influencing voting included (1) orientation towards academic localism or globalism, and the associated inclination to open market economy vs. autarchic national economic systems, and (2) the definition of “contribution to economic sciences” as purely academic or inclusive of participation in policy-making and public debates (borrowing from Ludvik Fleck, one can define the latter dimension as an opposition between “journal” and “newspaper” science). Although our findings reveal marked polarization, we do not find evidence of a total rejection of contributions by authors on other sides of intra-disciplinary divides. From Bodily Ontology to the Ethics of Nonviolence: the Role of Vulnerability as Interdependence in J. Butler’s Ethical-Political Thought In the first decades of the XXI century, the problem of vulnerability has become the subject of social sciences, including social and political theory in connection with the “affective turn” and the growth of social, political and economic instability. Representatives of feminist moral and political philosophy, revealing vulnerability as a universal and fundamental human trait, have played a significant role in its comprehension. The article explicates the concept of vulnerability as an ontological state of interdependence in the bodily ontology proposed by American philosopher Judith Butler and critically analyzes the relevance of deducing ethical and political obligations from this ontology. To solve this problem, the method of conceptual analysis is used, which allows to reveal the conceptual content of the key categories of Butler’s bodily ontology. The first part of the article is devoted to the consideration of Butler’s relational bodily ontology and its connection with the ethical and political reflections of the philosopher, for which two levels are distinguished: ontological and social. The second part analyzes three key categories of Butler’s proposed ontology: interdependence, vulnerability and precariousness. The application of these concepts in the philosopher’s criticism of liberal ideas about the subject as an autonomous, sovereign and independent individual is described. Finally, the third part analyzes Butler’s arguments on the justification of the ethics of nonviolence through an appeal to states of vulnerability and interdependence. Based on the analysis, the author comes to the conclusion that the ethics of nonviolence for Butler is a means of problematizing these ontological states in order to support political egalitarianism and refute liberal views about man as an individual; The bodily ontology developed by Butler can become a successful theoretical tool both for the criticism of established ideas about social subjectivity and for the study of the fundamental foundations of the existence of society, which remain invisible from the standpoint of individualistic views on man. Quantitative Analysis of Factors of Terrorist Activities: A Systematic Review Since the beginning of the 21st century, the number of empirical studies devoted to the analysis of factors influencing the risks of terrorist activity has grown significantly. At the same time, assessments of the influence of individual factors may differ in various studies, due to which there is a need for a generalizing work that will consider the key results of the studies. The last generalizing works were published in English in 2011. Since then, a large number of works have appeared that clarify the influence of various determinants of terrorism. This study presents an analysis of the results of quantitative studies of factors influencing terrorist activity. As part of the study, 75 papers published in 2011–2022 have been analyzed. The most widely studied determinants of terrorism can be divided into three groups: political, social and economic. A total of 53 factors were identified, the statistical significance of which was demonstrated in at least two studies. Studies of the factors of terrorist destabilization of the last ten years have yielded the following main results. They have shown that countries with a hybrid political regime (anocracy), in a state of internal or external conflict, with a weak central government (for example, “fragile” or “failed” states), with an intermediate level of socio-economic development (i.e. with intermediate levels of GDP per capita, urbanization and education) have the greatest risks of terrorist destabilization, although in recent years the zone of greatest risk of terrorist activity has shifted somewhat towards the socio-economically least developed countries. In addition, these states are characterized by low rates of economic growth, high inflation, large amounts of foreign financial aid, high levels of inequality, a fairly large population, pronounced discrimination against minorities, as well as high levels of repression and terrorist activity in previous years. Origins and Meaning of Jacob Taubes’ “Occidental Eschatology” Taubes J. (2023) Occidental Eschatology, trans. A. Shurbelev, St. Petersburg. 432 p. (In Russian) The translation of Jacob Taubes’ “Occidental Eschatology” into Russian is a worthy occasion to clarify for Russian-speaking readers the origins and significance of this book. Among the philosophical roots and foundations of Taubes’ text, there is the “pantheistic-immanent representation” of Baader and Schelling about time as the time of “salvation”, which is directed both towards the eschaton, towards future eternity, and the past, towards creation. Time turns out to be that which connects two eternities, and God unites time and eternity. On the other hand, Taubes develops Hans Jonas’ research on Gnosticism and discovers the Gnostic character of modernity. Three contextual moments allow the reader to understand the deeper meaning of “Occidental Eschatology”: 1) the rethinking and synthesis of Jonas’ and Karl Löwith’s ideas in Taubes’ work, 2) the discussions between Taubes, Hans Blumenberg, and Odo Marquard on the role of Gnosticism in modernity, and 3) the connection of Taubes’ ideas with the understanding of secularization as a continuation of religion “by other means”, which was characteristic of C. Schmitt and K. Löwith. These narratives are enhanced by the readers’ grasp of the fact that Taubes perceives himself as living in a Gnostic world of total alienation, which must disappear. “No spiritual investments” can be made in this world. This position is considered opposite to Schmitt, who asserted the necessity of delaying the apocalypse. In addition, it is necessary to understand the complexities of the wonderful translation, which has long been necessary for the Russian-speaking reader of “Occidental Eschatology”, who permanently resides in a gnostically interpreted world. Check your Privilege, or Sociology of Research Objects Krause M. (2021) Model Cases: On Canonical Research Objects and Sites. Chicago and London: University of Chicago Press. Vladimir Kantor’s Russia, or Fate in the Struggle with the Present and the Future Kantor V. (2023) Russia as Fate. Moscow: Centre gumanitarnyh iniziativ. — P. 524. ISBN: 978-5-98712-932-6 Antonio Negri (1 august 1933 — 16 december 2023). Storia di un communista