¹ 5 - 2003
Bearer of Legitimacy (Russian Political Tradition of Organization of the Power’s Social Address)
The author deems it a pressing necessity that a new model of social stratification be elaborated, apt to reflect specific features of sociums which have been developing under economic, ideological and political conditions other than those in the West. He formulates his own hypothesis supposed to explain specificity of the Russian system of the power social support organization. According to this hypothesis, the power in Russia has for its base a certain part of the population, which has no clear-cut delimitation. It is this part of the population — a kind of social vector through which political governance, as process, is invariably exercised — that performs the function of “legitimacy bearer”: it is on its numeric strength and social ramification that acceptance of, and compliance with the power-wielding agent’s will depend. In other words, the “legitimacy bearer” in Russia does not coincide with any horizontal stratum, for, on the one hand, no social stratum is wholly comprised in it, yet, on the other, it includes representatives of all social strata and groups existing at a given moment. To substantiate the suggested hypothesis, the author turns to a panoramic review of Russian history for the past 400 years and examines three historical types of the “legitimacy bearer”, which he conditionally designates as “the Orthodox believers”, “the army”, and “the proletariat”.