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Vol. 39 (Nº 01) Year 2018. Page 3

Conventional Wisdom in the Context of Formation of the Culture of Russia’s National Security

Sabiduría convencional en el contexto de la formación de la cultura de la seguridad nacional de Rusia

Andrey M. ROUDENKO 1; Viktoria V. KOTLYAROVA 2; Petr A. PONOMAREV 3

Received: 01/11/2017 • Approved: 30/11/2017


Contents

1. Introduction

2. Materials and methods

3. Results

4. Discussion

5. Conclusions

References


ABSTRACT:

The purpose of the article is to study the phenomenon of national security to define the notion “culture of national security” and explicate the most important factors of its formation as to the conditions of the Russian civilization. The work uses a large specter of methodological and theoretical approaches of philosophy, political science, sociology, and global studies. The culture of security is formed by developing the conventional wisdom, treated as reflecting on “past-present-future” in the time continuum, which re-quires institutionalization. Formation of the culture of national security actualizes the permanent necessity for integrating the past, the present, and the future by means of institutionalization of their strong connection for the purpose of preser-vation of the central value and sense core of civilization, i.e., achievement of the so-called geocultural position. Formation of conventional wisdom is influenced by political structures of a state and various institutes of civil society (with dominat-ing role of the latter in the Russian Federation). Formation of comprehensive and sustainable conventional wisdom is impossible without achieving the consensus of values and interests of a person, social groups, society, and state.
Key words: culture of national security, globalization, factors of formation of na-tional security culture, conventional wisdom, value, geocultural position.

RESUMEN:

El propósito del artículo es estudiar el fenómeno de la seguridad nacional para definir la noción de "cultura de la seguridad nacional" y explicar los factores más importantes de su formación en cuanto a las condiciones de la civilización rusa. El trabajo utiliza un gran espectro de enfoques metodológicos y teóricos de la filosofía, la ciencia política, la sociología y los estudios globales. La cultura de la seguridad se forma mediante el desarrollo de la sabiduría convencional, tratada como una reflexión sobre "pasado-presente-futuro" en el continuo de tiempo, que requiere institucionalización. La formación de la cultura de la seguridad nacional actualiza la necesidad permanente de integrar el pasado, el presente y el futuro por medio de la institucionalización de su fuerte conexión con el fin de preservar el valor central y el núcleo sensorial de la civilización, es decir, el logro de la llamada posición geocultural. La formación de la sabiduría convencional está influenciada por las estructuras políticas de un estado y varios institutos de la sociedad civil (con el papel dominante de este último en la Federación de Rusia). La formación de una sabiduría convencional integral y sostenible es imposible sin lograr el consenso de los valores e intereses de una persona, grupos sociales, sociedad y estado.
Palabras clave: cultura de la seguridad nacional, globalización, factores de formación de la cultura de seguridad nacional, sabiduría convencional, valor, posición geocultural.

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1. Introduction

At present, the need for provision of security is very urgent in the world and in Russia in particular. This need “grows every day, reflecting the process of distribution of social risks for various directions and levels of public being” (Samygin  et al., 2011). These risks influence the state and national sphere, threatening the stability of society and state, thus forming the necessity for formation of national security. This leads to the philosophic thought’s turning to the problem of national security. As culture is treated as a “foundation of national security”, its reflection within the philosophy of culture is very important (Kuznetsov, 2007). Cultural and philosophic aspect of solving this problem is unthinkable without clear definition of the notion “culture of national security” and determination of the most important factors of its formation.

The main problem to be solved by this article is to define the notion “culture of national security” on the basis of studying the phenomenon of national security and explicit the most important factors of its formation as to the conditions of the Russian civilization.

2. Materials and methods

The methodology of the research is aimed at determining the sense of the notion “culture of national security” and the most important factors of its formation.

The set goal could be achieved with the usage of a large specter of methodological and theoretical approaches of philosophy, political, social, and global sciences. That’s why this work uses a complex interdisciplinary approach which includes a range of approaches, namely – culturological, axiological, philosophic, sociological, and politological.

The large theoretical and methodological basis of the Russian philosophic and sociological reflection of the culture of national security as a special sphere of culture is especially important for this research. Large attention is paid to this problem in the conditions of modern Russia, which is shown by a whole range of works devoted to this topic. A certain contribution to the study of methodology of culture of national security was done by Y.A. Shestakov (Shestakov, 2016).

In the context of the announced topic, this formed theoretical and methodological heritage is very important and shows various attempts of systematization, structuring, and explication of the notion “culture of national security” and the factors that influence its formation.

The study is also based on the fundamental epistemological principle of integrity of the historic and the logical. Besides, the study used the formal and logical methods of abstracting, formalization, systemic & structural analysis and synthesis, induction and deduction, and categories and laws of dialectical logic.

The method of historism allowed viewing the object of the research in the retrospective for formulating the essential characteristics of the axiological matrix of the Russian civilization.

The principle of specificity was reflected in the study’s orienting at unification of the multitude of facts and processes with the necessity for further generalization. The method of comparison is important for the research. Separate data do not provide specific conclusions for scientific generalizations. In particular, they are necessary for understanding the system of values peculiar for the Russian civilization, goals and methods of provision of national security.

3. Results

Based on such treatments of culture as “a factor of organization of life of a society” (Polishchuk, 1993); “genome of social life of a specific society” (Stepin, 1993); “certain form and method of creativity” (Gurevich 2001), peculiar for a certain cultural system, it is possible to state that any culture, including the culture of national security, cannot have a strictly set objective measure. It is related to peculiarities of specific national and state or (and) civilizational society. This thought is proved by the fact that as “danger stimulates the realization of its specific determinacy as to other societies” (Koshkin, 2012), the presence of threats determines the socio-cultural system’s realizing its specific determinacy as to other societies, including in the aspect of formation of own culture of security. In other words, distinction of culture of national security allows for creation of special “interpretation of threats to security” (Smirnova, 2013), which stimulate the growth of national identity.

Fairness of this statement is confirmed by the following. Special universal threats to security, which are present in the modern world due to growing processes of globalization, are established legally at the international level. However, the priorities of reacting to threats, dangers, and challenges are set by each “cultural organism” in its own way. This does not mean ignoring the global problems of the modern times, but diverse hierarchy of priority of their solution as compared to each other and local problems. The specific certainty of threats to security is proved by the fact that a strategic and central element of the culture, including the culture of security, is the specific ideology, formed by culture and forming culture, which influences the society’s treating the international relations. While for some countries of the post-Soviet sphere the cultural identity is built on the image of “imperial Russia”, for Russia it is the image of “hostile West”, for Western and Central Europe it is the concept of the “integrated civilizational European space”, limited (which explains international conflicts within the EU) by a certain areal, for the USA and Canada it is the concept of “Atlanticism”, etc.

Methods of provision of security are culturally determined. For example, back in 1970’s American culture and political experts came to the conclusion that “… historic experience, political culture, geopolitics, and other characteristics of the public and political system will determine the possibility for usage or non-usage of nuclear weapons” (Smirnova, 2013). Feedback is also important here. Usage of these methods is predetermined by the cultural societies’ treatment of a specific society – according to their values, ideals, norms, and assessments of “other” cultures.

Thus, teleological, terminal, and instrumental components of the culture of security have a specific character of a specific cultural distinction. The dominating and strategic directions of provision of national security are culturally determined. At that, culturally determined goals and methods of provision of security and sustainability of the national society and civilizational society are endogenous only at the first glance. Viewing the national society as a complex open dynamic system, we come to the conclusion on close cooperation of endogenous and exogenous threats and their interdependence. This is explained by the fact that the threat of loss of uniqueness under the influence of external danger stimulates society for search for cultural ties that would ensure the value consensus and consolidation of society as a means of preservation of their distinction as a subject of history in the system of interaction of various actors with such status.

That’s why the dominating threat in the mass conscience of the Russians is lack of the value consensus within the Russian society and erosion of the value matrix of the Russian civilization. For the reasons of these phenomena are seen in expansion of the “Western Central” understanding of the process of globalization as elimination of cultural differences on the basis of total domination of ideological values that are peculiar for the West. This threat is aimed against the most sustainable value orientations that were formed in the course of historic development of the Russian civilization and which determine its cultural sense and constitute its axiological core. Values of collectivism, which were embodied in the national value of “communalism”, which suppose the orientation at agreement of opinion and value consensus, and the natural opposition to the West as sustainable cultural and historic constants, are a sufficient reason for determining these axiological determinants as the ones relevant to preservation of sustainability of the Russian national society and the main objects of provision of its security. The methods of provision of security, predetermined by the cultural uniqueness of the Russian society, include the society’s integrity on the national idea which is implemented into the collective consciousness by all main institutes of socialization – family, church, educational establishments, mass media, and public organizations due to the coordinating function of the state. For the ideocracy ideal of the political mode was formed in the course of historic development of Russia and it is the most important characteristic of a Russian’s mentality.

Thus, it seems that the cultural distinction of goals and methods of provision of national security, created by the influence of exogenous and endogenous factors, constitutes the sense of the category “culture of national security”. This definition does not contradict the existing definitions. Thus, the culture of national security is seen by V.N. Kuznetsov as the “process of preservation and development of goals, values, norms, and traditions of human, family, and society; social institutes; provision of sustainable and constructive interaction of people, with protection from the unacceptable risks, threats, dangers, and challenges” (Kuznetsov, 2007). V.V. Cheban explicits the culture of national security as an element of the country’s culture, which is “… totality of created material and moral values which characterize the content and uniqueness of cognition and reproduction of relations of safe being, functioning, and development of personality, society, and the state of the Russian genotype” (Cheban, 1997).

The above definitions show that the sense of culture of national security consists in temporally determined cultural uniqueness of the object of provision of security and of the methods of its achievement. As the moral foundation of the public life is public conscience, the “forms of public conscience require provision of the corresponding security” (Savitskaya, 2012). Specific social predetermination of culture of national security shows that “the notion of national security cannot be separated from the national conscience” (Zadokhin, 2015). In its turn, the determining aspect of the national conscience is conventional wisdom. As formulation and overcoming of threats to national security is unthinkable without society’s realizing its axiological specificity, formation of the culture of national security, which is adequate to the realia of globalization, is impossible without the value-related integration of society around its cultural and historic core. It is impossible to achieve it without a consensus on cognition and evaluation of the past, i.e., without formation of the integral Russian conventional wisdom.

In the modern conditions, under the influence of exogenous factors, it is characterized by a clearly expressed fragmentary character, elimination of strong connection according to the line “past-present-future”, attitude to certain events and processes of domestic history and random and wrong. This provokes “schizophrenia” of individual and mass conventional wisdom. A person with such conventional wisdom is culturally limited, as he associates himself only with certain fragments of domestic history which coincide with the value orientations of “pseudoglobalism” which strives to adapt the cultural standards of various societies to the models of individualistic, utilitarian, and economy-centered Western civilization. Besides, such orientation, which contradicts the long-term cultural determinants and mental peculiarities of Russia’s population, leads to the sense of artificiality and, therefore, to the instability of the present, this destroying the hope for the predicted future, which, in its turn, provokes social and psychological phenomena of mass apathy and indifference to the fates of a home country. Such “schizophrenia” is dangerous for it does not create preconditions for cultural and historic integrity and the value-based unification of the Russian society; without axiological consensus as to the past, it is impossible to acquire such consensus as to the present. In its turn, this stimulates the decrease of the level of national identity, as this threatens the existence of the Russian society as an independent cultural, political, and socio-economic unique organism.

It is necessary to remember that absence of the rational reflection of value-based landmarks and adequate sense of society inevitable leads to stereotypization and narrowing of its members’ conscience. Culture is expression of human’s creative nature, his constant striving for going beyond the usual limits. That’s why orientation at the abstract value orientations and striving to compare the axiological determinants of society’s development to the present resources and present situation leads to the results which are opposite to the expected ones. Outside of observation of the civilizational determinants formed in the course of historic development, cultural succession and consolidation, mobilization of society’s resources, and correct understanding of threats and fighting them are impossible.

All of this leads to erosion of cultural distinction and determination of goals and means of provision of security, and, therefore, to elimination of culture of security. In its turn, this cannot but lead to lack of the possibility to adequately determine goals and methods that stimulate preservation and development of Russia as an independent sociocultural system.

Therefore, for the purpose of consolidation of the Russian society in the form of acquisition of the level of moral integrity that would ensure sustainable development of the national and civilizational society, it is necessary to unification and integrity of conventional wisdom. In this aspect, treatment of conventional wisdom as “human’s realizing his inner self in the family tree and history of his family, realizing the collective “Us” in the national and cultural integrity of the country, as well as within the human civilization, i.e., as part of the individual self-awareness” that forms the self-awareness of the cultural society” is very important (Sosnin, 2015). As the dominating function of conventional wisdom is “acquisition of the national identity and consolidation of representatives of various social groups into a comprehensive social and historic group which possesses a similar type of treatment and evaluation of its historic past” (Sosnin 2015), for the purpose of provision of national security it is necessary to form self-awareness of the Russian not on the basis of individualistic and pragmatic but on the basis of collectivist and moral values which determine the civilizational archetype of Russia and are the main determinant of preservation of its cultural uniqueness.

In view of the fact that formation of integrated conventional wisdom is a necessary condition for provision of national security in the conditions of intensification of exogenous threats and the national and civilizational identity – according to which the collectivist and ideocracy components are dominating ones in the Russian mentality and the “systemic approach to analysis of phenomena in nature and society has been actively developing in recent decades” (Savitskaya, 2012) – the method of setting and solving of the problems of national security is considered by the methodologists the most adequate to the modern socio-cultural realia. As the culture of national security is closely connected to protection from unacceptable risks and threats of the type of conventional wisdom that can stimulate it, it is expedient to assign to the conventional wisdom the status of top-priority object of provision of national security, subjects of provision of which are associations of citizens with the dominating role of the state.

Therefore, firstly, explication of the culture of national security as a cultural distinction of goals and methods of provision of national security is most adequate to the modern sociocultural realia that orient the Russian society at closed character, not openness of the Russian culture. Secondly, due to obvious temporary distinction of the culture of national security, a determining factor of its formation is funding of the integrated national conventional wisdom. Thirdly, cultural and historic distinction of goals and methods of provision of national security determines the necessity for providing the conventional wisdom with the status of a top-priority object of provision of national security, subjects of provision of which are associations of citizens with the dominating role of the state.

4. Discussion

One of the first definitions of the notion of culture of national security belongs to V.V. Cheban. The culture of Russia’s national security was treated by him as an element of the country’s culture which is a “…totality of material and moral values, created by the people, which characterize the content and uniqueness of the method of cognition and reproduction of relations of safe being, functioning, and development of personality, society, and the state of the Russian genotype” (Cheban, 1997). This definitions implies that the sense of the culture of national security consists in temporally determined cultural uniqueness of the object of provision of security and of the methods of its achievement.

The necessity for formation of culture of national security becomes very topical if the national society is in danger – potentially or really. According to V.N. Kuznetsov, “danger is a geo-cultural phenomenon which is forbidding rules through objectively existing and realized possibility of a subject’s activities’ dealing damage, deformation, or trauma to the goal, ideal, values, and interests of human, family, society, state and civilization” (Kuznetsov, 2007).

Based on determination of the main types of threats, these and other modern Russian researchers formulated the most important factors of culture of security: forecasting of risks as a complex of political, socio-economic, moral, ecological, and anthropogenic processes which influence destructively on the traditional social institutes and organizations, transform their structure, violate normal functioning, and lead to degradation of social systems; prevention as a timely determination of quantitative and qualitative parameters of risks, which are – according to the criteria of statistical significance – at the level of sustainable public phenomenon; timely and adequate reaction to challenges that are basic determinants of dangers and threats and potential directions of their development.

However, we think that this list is not complete. It should be supplemented by another important component. The most important precondition of formation of the culture of national security is such basic factor of provision of national security as conventional wisdom.

It should be noted that for most researchers who study the problem of provision of national security it is obvious that formation of national interested takes place over a long historic period and that they relatively stable in the course of sustainable development of a nation (Fedorov, 2008). It is worth noting that the leading Russian analysts treat these interests as the “main determinant and the initial item of historic creativity of people” (Korostylev, 2008). A significant contribution into explication of threats to national security is done by a whole range of foreign scholars, in particular Piotr Sztompka. He thought that the main threat to the national culture as a core of national security is “cultural trauma”, characterized by anomie of civilizational incompetence, social distrust, collective senses of guilt and shame, etc., which destroy social integrity and stability of the society. The reasons for that are “revision of heroic traditions of nation” (Sztompka, 2001) and various radical transformations that cannot be combined with historic experience. Suddenness, unpredictability, quickness, radicalism, and inclusivity of changes, their treatment as external ones – all of this shows justifiability of fear of leaving the historic tradition as one of the most important factors of formation of the culture of national security.

This makes the conclusion on the historic character of culture of national security rather rightful. The culture of security is historic in its essence. Outside of conventional wisdom it is impossible to perceive the cultural and specific uniqueness of formation of national security, trans-historic value-based sense of the national or (as in case with Russia) coinciding civilizational society, originality of interrelations between person, society, and state within the corresponding national or civilizational entity, or the sense of development of a specific civilization against the background of the global civilization.

5. Conclusions

Any social organism exists by means of its resources which satisfy its needs and are an answer to the questions on its sense, causes of its appearance, and forms of its existence in the future. The level of adequacy of answer to these questions will “reflect the level of national and civil identification, level of society’s integration, development of solidarity, civic consciousness, and patriotism” (Kuznetsov, 2007). Thus, the culture of security requires orientation at the historic communication along the line “past-present-future”, i.e., it has to have integrated character.

This term could be achieved on the basis of value-based selection of the basis of the culture of national security in the following directions: between the history as a means of prediction of possibilities and explication of dangers; between the history of the probable and the desires, the proper and the existing; between the historic substantiation of achievement in the process of temporal movement of humanity towards moral, cultural, technical, economic, and functionalist benefits; between history as a means of provision of cultural stability and transformation of cultural values в процессе development of society for the purpose of increasing the adaptive potential of the national commonness; between the history as a possibility to substantiate the individualistic, corporate & national, or universal values.

Eventually, all these issues are brought down to one thing: should history realize the values of a certain national socio-cultural matrix, increasing it cumulative potential by strengthening the connection in the line “present-past-future”, or neglect this cumulation in favor of the higher, global, human values – freedom, which is realized in multivariance and alternativeness of historic development. As a result of analysis of factors that determine the culture of security, a historic subject has to choose the risk of destructive historic transformations or the risk of harmful stagnation.

An ideal solution to this dichotomy in the situation when the Western liberal universalism and globalism promote technical & economic and functionalist values, which may lead to death and degradation of humankind, is the necessity for using the universal value foundation of history of various cultures. This shows the possibility and desirability for the victory of general human values, together with national, corporate, and personal values. At that, these values will perform the role of value-tools and values-goals, thus creating an axiological basis for the culture of national security. This leads to the idea of equality of national cultures and civilizations. Such principles as pluralism, consensus, and dialog create a foundation for interaction of cultures and stimulate the promotion of values that appeared as a result of humanity’s transition to a new modernization stage of development. At that, the necessity and importance of competitive rivalry by means of expression of the national and civilizational creativity on the basis of mutual enrichment of unique cultures becomes the key condition of progressive development of humanity.

Thus, culture of security is formed by acquiring conventional wisdom, considered to the reflection of “past-present-future” in the time continuum, which requires institutionalization. Formation of culture of national security actualizes the permanent necessity for integration of the past, present, and future, by means of institutionalization of their unbreakable connection for the purpose of preservation of the central value-based core of civilization, i.e., achievement of so-called geo-cultural position. Formation of conventional wisdom is influenced by political structures of state and various institutes of civil society. Based on this, it is obvious that formation of comprehensive and sustainable conventional wisdom as a cultural distinction of goals and methods of provision of national security is impossible without achieving the consensus of values and interests of person, social groups, society, and state, with dominating role of the latter in Russia.

References

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1. Andrey M. Rudenko, Viktoria V. Kotlyarova and Petr A. Ponomarev. Don State Technical University (Shakhty branch), Shakhty, Russia.

e-mails: amrudenko@list.ru

2. Andrey M. Rudenko, Viktoria V. Kotlyarova and Petr A. Ponomarev. Don State Technical University (Shakhty branch), Shakhty, Russia.

e-mails:biktoria66@mail.ru

3. Andrey M. Rudenko, Viktoria V. Kotlyarova and Petr A. Ponomarev. Don State Technical University (Shakhty branch), Shakhty, Russia.

e-mails: ponomarev_p@mail.ru.


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