Russia’s ideology is ‘traditional great powerness cleansed of communism,’ Pavlova says

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Irina Pavlova, Russian historian

Irina Pavlova

Both supporters and critics of the Putin regime often say his regime lacks an ideology – Aleksandr Podrabinek is only the latest – but in fact, Irina Pavlova says, it does: “traditional Russian great powerness (velikoderzhaviye), cleansed of communism and dressed up in Orthodox clothing.”

Not only should this be obvious to even a casual observer as such events as the just-concluded celebrations of Victory Day, the US-based Russian historian argues that the chord that this ideology has struck with the Russian people, one much deeper than communism ever did, explains support for Putin and Putinism.

The majority of the Russian population accepts the idea that Russia must be a great power regardless of the price because it is surrounded by enemies, Pavlova says. Indeed, one can say that “if you ‘scratch’ a Russian, you will find a great power chauvinist.” Russians are ready to “talk for hours” about the greatness of Russia and its power.

This is “a fait accompli” and it won’t be significantly changed if it is adopted as a formal ideological platform, the historian continues. Attachment to the core ideas of greatpowerness “unites the powers, the elite, the people of Russia and also a significant part of progressive society” elsewhere.

This idea has its roots in the 16th century idea of Moscow as “the third Rome.” Over time, “this idea was transformed into an ideology” and now has taken the form of what may be called “Russian fundamentalism,” whose followers accept without question four key notions without asking that they be proven:

  • First, Russians believe that “the Russian people is the bearer of a special morality and a special feeling of justice.”
  • Second, they reject “the spiritless West as a model of societal development.
  • Third, they have a “vision of the future of Russia as an empire.”
  • And fourth, they are “certain of its special and unique historical mission.”

That is an ideology, Pavlova says, whatever those who deny its existence suggest.



Edited by: A. N.

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  1. Avatar Brent says:

    Russians are delusional. Must be from eating too much “rat burger” smothered in palm oil cheese

    More like “The Great Russian Sh*thole”

    1. Avatar Alex George says:

      Their ambition way exceeds their ability.

  2. Avatar zorbatheturk says:

    I have seen plenty of RuSSians in Asia and there was nothing great about any of them. In fact, if you want to see a horrible sight sit outside a convenience store in Kuta, Bali, and wait until a lardass 55 yo Russian wearing only Speedos walks past.

    1. Avatar Ihor Dawydiak says:

      A few further notes. Too funny or revolting depending on your sense of humor. Let us not forget the massive man breasts and/or bulging bums and the Dr. Strangelove sunglasses (this can apply to both sexes). Truly examples of a homo sapien Yet these russkis who could mistakenly be viewed as auditioning for a sketch involving “Monty Python’s Flying Circus” have no idea as to how foolish that they are perceived.

  3. Avatar Mephisto says:

    Russia will not survive 21st century, it will fall apart. Putler helped to speed the process up. Russia is in a blind alley and there is no way it can evolve, grow. It can only stagnate, degenerate, fester, fall apart. The real problem in russia is chekism

    1. Avatar Ihor Dawydiak says:

      That is correct. There has never been a single case in the history of civilization where an empire has not imploded or disintegrated for any number of reasons and the so called Russian Federation has no logical reason to be an exception.

  4. Avatar Eddy Verhaeghe says:

    It is not because Russia as a state has an ideology, that Russians as a people believe in said ideology.

    Pavlova’s ‘First, Russians believe that “the Russian people is the bearer of a special morality and a special feeling of justice.” ‘

    No ordinary Russian believes that he is the ‘bearer of a special morality’ and certainly not that he is a bearer of ‘a special feeling of justice.’

    They all know that they are on their own and have to fend for themselves and have to do whatever they can to take care of themselves, their family and their friends as other Russians and certainly not the state will not take care of them…

    They all know that judges are for sale and that if they are not bought, they bow to the wishes of the powers that be locally, regionally and in the Kremlin.

    Pavlova’s ‘Second, they reject “the spiritless West as a model of societal development.” ‘

    Russians with money flock to the West. They invest their money in ‘the spiritless West’ and if possible will send their children and their family to the West to be educated and to live a better life than they can live in Russia itself.

    Russians with little or no money can only hope to travel or dream of travel to the West and can only hope that one day they will be able to live a better life. I.e. the life that Westerners are able to live.

    Pavlova’s ‘Third, they have a “vision of the future of Russia as an empire.” ‘

    That is the only thing I personally believe is anchored in the Russian’s psyche. But it is really not much more than the dummy that keeps them placid. As the hope of eternal salvation kept people placid in the West.

    Pavlova’s ‘And fourth, they are “certain of its special and unique historical mission.” ‘
    The powers that be and the people that hang around them might believe in such a ‘special and unique historical mission’ but ordinary Russians aspire like the people in the rest of the world to live a life as good as possible.
    All in all the ideology of the Russian state is as empty as can be and all ordinary Russian know it, as it doesn’t feed or house properly them and leaves them emptyhanded when things go wrong.

    1. Avatar Kruton says:

      You should be a motivational speaker,LOL!!!!

  5. Avatar veth says:

    Russia is a fascist state. Fascism is the ideology.

  6. Avatar zorbatheturk says:

    RuSSianism is a disease.