Question at hand
Bogdanov V.P. —
Discourses about Studying Old Believers: Articulating the Issue
// Culture and Art. – 2017. – ¹ 5.
– P. 12 - 24.
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Review: As a socio-cultural phenomenon, Old Believers have been attracting attention of many religious activists, politicians, economists, historians, etc. However, the main contribution of the representatives of this ethno-confessional tradition to the general Russian culture has not been defined yet. According to the author, this historiographical gap can be covered by analyzing various discourses about studying Old Believers. Based on the author, there has been four approaches to studying Old Believers: political, ethnographical, philosophical and scientific. At the turn of the 17th - 18th centuries Symeon of Polotsk, Dimitry of Rostov and others formed the political discourse. The main feature of the political approach is that it first it had a negative nature but then started to attain positive attitudes to Old Believers. With the development of the liberal movement in the 19th century, Old Believers were often perceived as the bearers of true RUssian culture on the one hand (which brought them close to Slavophiles) and fighters against the unfair state government on the other hand (this is the way Old Believers were viewed by Westerners and revolutionists). When the academic community started to study traditions of Old Believers in the 19th century, the ethnographical discourse was formed and later the philosophical discourse developed. Archeographical expiditions played an important role therein. Moreover, in the 20th century Old Believers started to actively participate in the research process themselves. At the present time the academic historiography cannot be imagined without Old Believers and their tradition. In this research Bogdanov provides examples of the influence of Old Believers on the origin or these or those cultural works and development of the scientific and philosophical thought. Appearing at different times, discourses influenced one another and all four discourses exist today, too. According to the author of the article, analysis of various discourses about studying Old Believers will allow to better understand their contribution to the development of Russian culture.
Keywords: intellectuals, understanding, discourse, history, philosophy, politics, Russian culture, Old Believers, expeditions, tradition
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