The author of this article considers an analysis of totalitarian consciousness in post-communist societies as a necessary premise for understanding how irreversible is the failure of the former totalitarian political order. In this view, the article discusses, on the basis of some available empirical data, the nature of the contemporary totalitarian mentality with regard to the Russian case and examines its general scale in the structure of public consciousness. The article defines several distinct types of a totalitarian mentality in Russia and classifies them as “conservative-socialistic,” “imperial-nationalistic,” “nostalgic-parasitic,” “authoritarian-conservative,” “authoritarian-modernist anti- West,” and “authoritarian-modernist pro-West.” The study leads the author to a conclusion about the existence of a considerable potential for the extension of the totalitarian types of consciousness in Russia. At the same time, the analysis of the totalitarian mentality in Russia reveals not only the complex nature of its typological structure, but also the significant differences between the socio-political attitudes which are peculiar to some types of the totalitarian mentality. These contradictions between the different bearers of such a mentality essentially preclude a probability of their consolidation around a common platform. Pointing to the existence of a significant similarity between the current socio-psychological developments in Russia and in other post-totalitarian nations, the author, however, pays attention to a specificity of Eastern European countries with regard to the scale of dissemination of totalitarian components in public consciousness and their typological structure.
Totalitarian Public Consciousness in a Post-Totalitarian Society: The Russian Case in the General Context of Post-Communist Developments
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Grigory Vainshtein; Totalitarian Public Consciousness in a Post-Totalitarian Society: The Russian Case in the General Context of Post-Communist Developments. Communist and Post-Communist Studies 1 September 1994; 27 (3): 247–259. doi: https://doi.org/10.1016/0967-067X/94/03/0247-13
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