Issue of Russian identity — страница 3

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Russian Orthodox, Russian Imperial or Russian Soviet. It was other peoples of the empire, in particular Moslem and Western Christian (Roman Catholic and Protestant), who had problems. This is why during hundreds of years Russians did not have a very strong ethnic identity, whereas their many non-Russian neighbors did. However, this has been changing lately (Ponarin 1999). Russian national identity has been an important issue especially during the rule of Putin. There is a certain trend towards strengthening a prestige and national self-identity of state. The problem of identity of Russia has been quite actual during the last 15 years and it is connected with the problem of balance of power. New identity of Russia is formed, but there is some uncertainty. Russia is undergoing

important changes in politics and it is considered to be a powerful, but quite unpredictable nation.Russia is an ethnic community, which brings in itself specificities. It is a historically built nation which has its significant traits and which prolongs its existence. It is a strong nation which has survived through the years of history and change, and it is a nation, which strongly holds its position in the World and in Eurasia (see Putin 2006). An official point of view by Igor Ivanov (2001) is that Russia's foreign policy is based on national interests rather than political ideology. He says that Russia believes in the settlement of international problems on a collective basis in strict accordance with the rules of international law will become a fundamental principle of the

Russian system. The scope of Russia's activities is expanding to include international cooperation aimed at responding to new global threats and challenges (Ivanov 2001: 12-13). By reflecting its interests in world politics, the Russian state is in the world order of states. It has its specific identity and behavior, therefore it signifies its important role in the world and makes a commitment to world political composition and behavior. Ideas and behavior are important in shaping International Relations, and Russia behaves accordingly to international rules. In my research, I will study the identity of Russia, its national identity and their meaning for international politics. I also aim to show that identity is important in state construction. I will mostly concentrate on how

Russia formed its identity in the past and in the present, and I will question why it is so important to identify Russia as a nation. I will look more closer at Russia's history. In addition, I will make a brief description between the view of Russian identity introduced by Russian, as well as Western scholars, who reflect ideas about Russian identity, and I will examine these issues. I see the subject of my study asking topical, because of the search of Russian identity nowadays. Due to some changes in the internal and external politics of Russia, it has brought some changes in the order of states, as well as it influenced the identity of Russia, the way how the other states see a Russian nation, and how the identity in Russia is formed. The question of identity is quite

important because it touches historical, geopolitical and other aspects. Therefore, I will consider these aspects and place them as the most important in the formation of Russian identity. I will use the theory of constructivism to show how the identity is formed in the aspect of states formation and in the wider context, including the identity of Russia as a peculiar phenomenon in history. My reearch will also include the brief observation of the history of Russia, of Russian identity nowadays and the analysis of the official position of Russia in politics. I will therefore examine national specifics, as well as traditions of Russia. Besides, I will also base my research on other sources of formation of national identity, including the views of most well-known Russian

politicians. The formation of Russian identity is an interesting topic because of the constructivist theoretical implications. It is important to see Russia in the context of state formation, in the context of other states, and to see which role does Russia plays in the world politics. It is also important to understand the process, which determines the manner in which Russia interacts. It is interesting because throughout history, geopolitics determined Russia's stand in the world, determined its behavior, as well as provided good economic grounds for development. A construction of the state is a very important process which involves formations on the state level. It is important from the view of constructivism, which sees identity as the main discourse in the theories of IR. An