Conference e-mail

The Aleksanteri Institute

Unioninkatu 33 (P.O. Box 42)
00014 University of Helsinki

Past Aleksanteri Conferences

Ekaterina Khodzhaeva (The North-West Institute of Management of the Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration, Russia)

Patriotic Work in Russia: Intensive Bureaucratic Mobilisation and Militarization

Since 2001 programs of patriotic education were adopted and renewed in Russia every five years on the federal level, similar programs and even the legislation were issued by regional and local authorities. Almost all federal agencies (from army and law enforcement agencies to educational and cultural state bodies) must elaborate their own patriotic programs. Patriotic education became mandatory to low level of governance and even on in organisations (schools, universities, state companies, etc.). Patriotism as wide range of ideological and practical activity is aimed to glue very diverse and heterogeneous Russian society into unique and strong nation. Political scientists explain it as ideological indoctrination aimed to legitimate authoritarian regime in Russia. Based on the qualitative data (expert interviews, participant observation) and official documents the paper is focused on militarisation as one of the consequences of very intensive patriotic mobilisation in last several years: - the pressure of bureaucratic logic and very specific interests of some state agents and politicians influence the patriotic agenda. Patriotic work became one of the significant specialisation of various GONGO that sometimes are used for political repressions and as “violent patriots” to struggle with opposition. Top-down mobilisation provide state demand that meets the bottom-up initiatives: patriotic NGOs, radical religious and Cossack groups, and other types of face-to-face engagement initiatives aimed at promoting patriotism and increasing support of government policies in Ukraine and in Syria; - despite of the various kinds of patriotic work declared in the official documents, the military patriotism remains mainstreaming direction that include various activities and mostly is focused on Great patriotic war. In addition, very different social groups and even busyness organisations are involving in the military patriotic education.