Mass sympathy for the Soviet past in contemporary Russia is obvious. According to the VTsIOM data, in March 2016, 64% of the citizens declared their readiness to vote for the preservation of the USSR. It was 76% of respondents in the USSR and 71% of respondents in the RSFSR who supported the idea of the preservation of the Soviet Union in 1991. In November 2016, 63% of the polled Russians expressed regret about the collapse of the USSR. In 2006, 10 years before, 68% of the respondents regretted about the disintegration of USSR. At the same time, the share of respondents who were confident that the collapse of the USSR could be avoided increased from 47% in 2006 to 57% in 2016.
In 2015, in commemoration of the 70th anniversary of the Victory in the Great Patriotic War, monuments dedicated to Stalin were opened in several Russian cities (in Lipetsk, Vladimir, in the cities of Krasnodar, Stavropol, Tver’ regions, in the Republic of Mari El). During 2017, monuments to I. Stalin were installed in the Arkhangelsk and Rostov regions. By the way, in accordance with the results of the VCIOM’s data many Russia’s citizens (62%) support similar initiatives of perpetuation of the figure of I. Stalin. 65% of respondents also opposed to the idea of installation of signs that remind about the crimes of the Soviet leader.
At the same time the Russia’s political leaders prefer to avoid sharp discussions about ”inconvenient moments” not so much of the Soviet past as of the communist legacy. The Russian authorities didn’t try to raise the issue of critical revision of the Soviet history. Uncritical attitude of the Russian authority towards the Soviet past is still vivid – in May, 2014, the Criminal Codex of Russia was supplemented by a new article (#354.1) – the Rehabilitation of Nazism. This article imposed criminal punishment including imprisonment for dissemination of false information about the activities of the USSR during the Second World War. Extensive possibility for interpretation of the falsification of the Soviet policy during the War time transforms the law into a universal mechanism of suppression of dissent and prevents even probability for critical debates on the war period. The official interpretation of wartime events should be treated as dogma, as a sacred revelation.
In such a dogmatic paradigm of the history any black spots of history can be justified, even the crimes of Stalinism. On the one hand, one can’t say that the Russian government openly mythologizes the figure of Josef Stalin. Still, the participation of President Vladimir V. Putin on the opening in the center of Moscow of the Wall of Sorrow, a monument to victims of political repression (the 30th of October, 2017), testifies to the readiness of the authorities to recognize that the Soviet past of the country was also ”a tragic period of our history, when whole classes, entire nations were subjected to cruel persecutions”.
Installation of the monuments to I. Stalin: some European media qualified as a gradual reassessment of the historical role of I. Stalin in the Russian province. Der Tagesspiegel, for example, wrote that installation of the Stalin’s monuments and the opening of museums in honor of the Soviet leader, without denying of crimes of Stalin’s terror could be interpreted as re-stalinisation. Some European researches consider Article 354.1, introduced to the criminal code in 2014 by Russian Duma, to be more similar to Putin’s policy of rehabilitating Stalinism. Whereas some scientists consider that the politics of the last President term of V. Putin contain the features of the re-politicization of history in order to revive a positive memory of Stalin. Can one really see the de-Stalinization process in the contemporary Putin’s Russia?
 The paper was prepared with the support of the Russian Foundation for Basic Research. Grant RFBR 18-011-01179 Sociological, historical-ethnological and philosophical-anthropological factors of the formation of the identity of Russians in a multicultural context. Grant RFBR 17-03-00733 System-communicative approach of N. Luhmann in the appendix to the Russian society.
 Barash Raisa Eduardovna, Cand. Sci (Pol. Sci.), the Senior Research Fellow of the Center for the Comprehensive Social Studies, Institute of Sociology, Russian Academy of Sciences.
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