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Books by Grigory Yavlinsky
Economics and Politics in Russia
The Center for Economic and Political Research (EPIcenter)
Nizhni Novgorod-Moscow, 1992

1.2. Principles.

Solution of the Problem

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We believe that the given statements could be synthesized as follows:

- "different systems of notions" represents what is generally called "culture" and "politics"; - in terms of culture, every nation can have right of self- determination, and spiritual prosperity of the nation will be the top goal of the "cultural self-determination". Here we are speaking about the freedom of the human spirit. A spiritually free person lives in a realm of the spirit, and not in a realm of objectization; in the world of being, not in the world of things. If we proceed from the idea that every person is spiritually free, and consequently can become a creator, then by way of simple deduction we should admit human freedom in terms of cultural creative activity.

Who would argue this? This idea is midway between that of the democrats and that of the national patriots.

The "state" and "organization of the state" with reference to this narrow task should be taken not in the general meanings, but in the specific meanings, as "national and cultural policy of the state", as a CONDITION for cultural activity. (By the way, in this understanding of "self- determination" the lack of sense in the first statement is very well seen. It suddenly becomes obvious that the "state" has nothing to do with it, we can speak here only about the realm of the spirit, the integrity and totality of a nation's spirit; and this is true even with such a substantial limitation that this totality entails an opportunity for openness not only with regard to the material aspect (this is evident), but also with regard to the spiritual totality of other nations. The latter should be also understood in such a sense that it is true not only with regard to the nations of one "culture", one "civilization", but also with regard to the nations of different cultures and civilizations").

Up until now the advocates of disintegration proceeded from an "evident" concept that national culture is best developed within the frameworks of a national state. But this is not "evident" at all. The advocates of state self-determination "on a cultural basis" have to prove the thesis that flourishing of culture is possible only within the framework of an independent state, and they have given no explanations for this yet. (From the experience of the nations which realized their right to self-determination after the collapse of the USSR, all the tasks of cultural development are shifted to the background, to nowhere, being replaced by continuous disputes of political and economic nature).

Our examination shows only one thing - "state self- determination" and "cultural development" (cultural self- determination) are two different things. And if so, then it is quite possible and theoretically conceivable that in practice culture can flourish in an integral state, and, vice versa, it can stagnate in a national state:

- in terms of politics other concepts are coming into force. The word "can" should be understood not as just a desire, not as an absolute freedom of action; in this sense it exists to this or that extent, in these or those conditions, but as an action with reasonable grounds. These can be grounds of economic or political nature. "Culture" also may be such grounds, but only in the case if "national and cultural policies of the state" does not provide external space for cultural development.

- in any case, existence (and even "flourishing") of a single state with different types of cultures is quite conceivable. From the point of view of reason, there are no discrepancies there. Another matter is that such an abstract statement is given here as only a possible one. It becomes a necessary one upon certain conditions, and two of these conditions should be considered as major:

- reasonable national and cultural policies of the state; and - a sufficiently developed process of mutual understanding, and the "creative communication" of nations.

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