Центр Изучения Современности

Centre for Modernity Studies

On a sacred basis of a sociality 3: Social identities

Kroopkin P. L., Lebedev S. D.


The article discusses a generalized structure of human social identities giving concrete examples of proposed scheme for family, science community, university chair, Belgorod local identity. It also elaborates a model of human sacred sphere and its impact on a human sociality.


Keywords: Becker, Durkheim, Taylor, sacredness, sociality, social identity, local identity. далее…

On a sacral basis of a sociality 2: Ideal types of elementary social structures

Kroopkin P. L.


The article elaborates a model of human sacred sphere and its impact on a human sociality. In particular it discusses ideal types of elementary social structures, such as a totemic band (the Durkheim’s idea) and a temple community. It also presents a hypothesis about a formation of temple communities on a basis of totemic bands in anthropogenesis and further development of more complicated social structures.


Keywords: Durkheim, Taylor, sacredness, sociality, social identity, elementary social structures, anthropogenesis, totemic band, temple community. далее…

Archetype of Sacred

Kroopkin P. L.


The article discusses the archetype of sacred, which was introduced for an individual psyche, and is considered in a historical perspective – both when it was formed as a result of aromorphosis in the evolution of pre-human tribes, and when it was involved in another aromorphosis, setting off a social evolution. It was found that despite the secularization in the developed countries, a sacred continues to be important for people and society though in other form than before. далее…

Patterns of “ancestor worship” in post-Soviet Russia

Kroopkin P. L.


The current social transformation pushed majority of Russian people to a profound identity crisis, and caused a significant fragmentation of the Russian society. The mental and behavioral patterns of a significant portion of society’s lower strata, adversely affected by the social changes, can be interpreted as a form of “ancestor worship”. These people tend to rally around chosen periods of Russian history (“Golden Ages”) and appropriate “true ancestors”. For every “Golden Age” there are collections of corresponding glorifying texts, which are of a “sacred” nature and devoid of application of criticism. Numerous senseless “flaming” threads of pseudo-historical debates on the Internet can be understood as rituals, which people use to worship their own “ancestors” with unrestrained praise, as well as through disparaging the “ancestors” and beliefs of other groups.


The article provides a classification of such identities, and proposes explanatory models for their genesis and sustainable reproduction. далее…

Archetypes of sociality

This paper presents the results of the extraction of archetypes, which could form the basis of social institutions within the institutional theory. Highlighted the archetypes of the social structure: ours / we and others, authority, value of children, value of women, young men as expendable; of the communication: language, signs of interaction, imposing “to touch”; cognitive ones: imitation, value of experience, tradition, and also the mental systems like justice, claims, and questioning limits. далее…

On sacral basis of sociality

Kroopkin P. L.

Following the ideas of Durkheim, the article proposes a concept of the relationship of sociality and sacredness of people, which is based on an assumption of existence in a human brain of a sacral emotions center. This center was formed in anthropogenesis because of an evolutionary efficiency of a taboo on limitation of access to food for secondary members of a band during famine periods (which is not typical behavior of apes – our evolutionary predecessors). Initial social structure – totemic band, which appeared as a result of the formation of such an identity model of sociality, proved to be a carrier of the archetypical features of different social identities, which can be observed in the reality.

The article also presents, how a strengthening of reason – the source of Modernity – led first to the desacralization of a human being, and then to the formation of a post-secular world.


Institutes of Russian rural societies in the end of the 19th century – following the observations of A.N. Engelhardt

Kroopkin P. L.

Using the description of the Russian rural society of A.N. Engelhardt, the article discusses the institutes that determined economic activities of peasants in the Smolensk region of Russia in the end of the 19th century. Peasants acting as economic agents showed themselves like very rational individualists. Peasants practiced their rationality being caused to manage a complex set of contractual obligations of different nature that accompanied their annual cycle of activities. Contractual discipline and permanent necessity of deliberation helped them in this. Such values as “be a farmer”, “do not make more of another” restricted them. The article interprets peasant’s opportunism as an element of the institute of property, stimulating agent to get rid of assets being not under control.

The governmental legislation was inconsistent with daily behavioral routines of peasants, giving rise to abuse, arbitrariness and violence of officials and landowners against peasant communes, and also to corruption.

A well-known institutional point: “collectivism is a basis for behavior patterns of Russians” did not received an actual confirmation.


On peculiarities of motivation of actual Russian managing class

Kroopkin P. L.

The article discusses general items of social stratification, and proposes a way of formalization of elite and sub-elite strata of a society. It shows that elite tends to have a social identity, which creates and maintains a mental boundary in the social consciousness. The article applies the proposed approach to the current Russian elite, investigates the polarization on the elite mental border that maintains the separation of the elite from the society, and describes the specific psychosocial complex that drives the anomy of the Russian elite.


Evolutional theory of Jung’s archetypes:

Archetypical features in structure of social identity

Kroopkin P. L.

The article discusses the concept of K. Jung’s archetypes and their link to biological evolution. Basing on Yu. I. Semenov’s approach to anthropogenesis (a group selection in pre-human bands), the author proposes a specific mechanism which could lead to the suppression of the pre-human social model based on the behavioral dominance and to the development of a human model of sociality based on the social identity. This way of evolution results in stabilizing of a biosocial mechanism, which supports the functioning of the basic taboo regulating equal access to food, and which activity could be understood by people afterwards as influence of sacral forces creating needs in religion.

The article also discusses some universal features of the social identities that are archetypical, and shows some approaches how the developed theory could be used in public practice.


To the theory of institutional fields: General concept

Kroopkin P. L.

The article discusses social institutes from the social nominalism point of view. It introduces a concept of institutional field of a society, considers interaction of institutes both between themselves and with centers of power, highlights specific features of a society, which institutional field is not consistent with its legal system. Among the latest are: abuse, arbitrariness and violence of officials, deficit of legitimation of the governing bodies, inefficient use of qualified staff in bureaucracy, image of  “true” legislation as something ideal and not achievable in real life, legal nihilism.