Civilizational contours and the effects of the Russian revolutions in the 20th century

Research outputpeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


This article considers the civilizational contours, and the effects and consequences of the Russian revolutions in the 20th century, and sheds new light on the fate of the project of multiple modernities in Russia. The theoretical and methodological foundation of the study is the civilizational analysis developed in the works of Elias, Sorokin, Nelson, Kavolis, Eisenstadt, Arnason, as well as several Russian researchers: Shkaratan, Lapin, Rozov, Yakovenko. The logic of the civilizational analysis of Russian revolutions is based on establishing relationships between four basic sociological categories: social structure, institutions, culture and agency. The relationship between social structure and culture is most essential, because social conditions, causes, resources, groups, their motivation, behavior and actions are implemented in the forms of culture, key symbolic codes, norms and rules. This means that the dynamics of social structure and culture are functionally, structurally, and behaviorally determined; structure and culture are themselves reproduced by diverse social institutions, which in turn are executed and transformed by various social agents. Through this categorical scheme the article draws the civilizational contours and evaluates the consequences of Russian revolutions. A number of destructive and constructive civilizational effects of these revolutions are outlined and compared. The main argument of the article is that the renewal of the social system in Russia, which followed the radical upheavals in 1917, implied an accelerated project of modernization and the building of a completely new civilizational order, which appealed to the broader population.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7-29
Number of pages23
JournalMir Rossii
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2017

Scopus subject areas

  • Demography
  • Development
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Economics and Econometrics

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