Проблема компрометации гуманитарного знания в России в период создания «большой науки»

Translated title of the contribution: THE PROBLEM OF COMPROMISING HUMANITARIAN KNOWLEDGE IN RUSSIA DURING THE CREATION OF THE “BIG SCIENCE”

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The purpose of the research is analysis of the features of changes in attitudes toward the Humanities in Russia during the construction of
the “Big Science”. The author turned to the problem of compromising and discrediting humanitarian knowledge, which is still topical.
He considered the ideas of such little-known figures of Russian science and education as Dmitry Martynov, Wolf Gordin and Pavel
Arbuzov.
The research based on published works of chosen scholars and manuscripts of their works and correspondence found in the collections
of the State archive of the Russian Federation and the St. Petersburg branch of the Archive of the Russian Academy of Sciences. The
author also used the works of their contemporaries: scientists and politicians, which allowed understanding their attitude toward the role
and importance of humanitarian knowledge during the large-scale social transformations of the 1st third of the 20 century.
Time of building “Big Science” was characterized by a desire to scientific revisionism, to reduce established scientific knowledge,
which could be combined with attempts to undermine the dominant conservative customs and practices. Instead, they could offer theories
that were far from scientific and contributed to compromising and discrediting humanitarian knowledge. Bright examples are the ideas
of Dmitry Martynov, especially his language theory. With the coming to power of the Bolsheviks, the topic of protection of humanitarian
knowledge has not lost its relevance, but for other reasons: attention began to focus on the development of technical and natural science
disciplines. In such circumstances, the idea of a complete rethinking of the role of humanitarian knowledge found radical supporters.
One of the thinkers who most loudly declared this was the anarchist Wolf Gordin. In his unpublished book “Pantechnicalism” (1918) he
wrote about the need to refute all the basic principles of science and assertion the truth of technology alone. Another striking example of
a non-trivial theory of reforming scientific knowledge, which appeared in the first post-revolutionary years, is the “method of scientific
syncretism” proposed by Arbuzov to Nikolas Marr. In it, he argued that scientific syncretism is a communism of ideas, and all sciences
must be combined into one.
The author comes to the conclusion that the chosen examples were ideas transferred by both scientists and the authorities, but brought to
radicalism: revision of humanitarian knowledge on new grounds, strict subordination to the official ideology, and the principle of utility
as the main argument for their implementation. Such “paper science” is interesting as an additional characteristic of the climate of the
era. On the one hand, the phenomena of Martynov, Gordin, or Arbuzov are example of the Dunning-Kruger effect. On the other hand, it
is an integral feature of the field of scientific experiments that led to the devaluation of humanitarian knowledge.
Translated title of the contributionTHE PROBLEM OF COMPROMISING HUMANITARIAN KNOWLEDGE IN RUSSIA DURING THE CREATION OF THE “BIG SCIENCE”
Original languageRussian
Pages (from-to)127-132
Number of pages6
JournalВЕСТНИК ТОМСКОГО ГОСУДАРСТВЕННОГО УНИВЕРСИТЕТА. ИСТОРИЯ
Issue number64
DOIs
StatePublished - 2020

Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities(all)

Keywords

  • history of science
  • science and state power
  • methodology of Humanities
  • science in the USSR
  • the Gordin brothers

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