A recent dissertation by M.Soc.Sc. Krista Berglund reveals:
- the Russian mathematician and academician Igor Shafarevich (b. 1923) is not an anti-Semite or an extreme nationalist
- as he has been labelled in research literature,
- dealing with Russian politics during the perestroika and the post-perestroika period.
- the labeling led to request of Shafarevich, an honorary member of the American Natl Academy of Sci., to resign
Shafarevich's notorious reputation is based on an old article of his - "Russophobia" (1988)
- The scandal concerning the article reached a peak
- when the board of the US Natl Academy of Sci. asked its honour member Shafarevich to give up membership
- Nothing equally severe has ever happened throughout the history of the Academy.
Berglund discusses Shafarevich's social activities, writings and ideas as well as their reception
Special attention is paid to the "Russophobia" article
- the detailed discussion of which undoubtedly shows
- that the article's status of being an anti-Semitic text has no justification.
- There were many reasons for judging the article in a hasty, but an extremely fierce manner.
- one is the fact that once the Soviet system started to tremble
--- it was commonly feared that anti-Semitism would flare up,
--- which is why readers easily found worrying signs in the article,
--- even between the lines.
- the "Russophobia" article was first judged by a small, active group of emigrants,
- whom Shafarevich had criticised in the article for their deterministic interpretation of history,
- and their irrational way of instigating friction between Russians and Jews.
- Despite the criticism, they assumed the role of researcher or expert,
- loudly presenting their argument of Shafarevich's alleged anti-Semitism to Western readers.
In the 1970s, Shafarevich was known as one of the most famous nonconformists in the Soviet Union
- who worked together with academician Andrei Sakharov
- in the Moscow-based human rights committee of nonconformists.
- Shafarevich also engaged in close cooperation with Alexandr Solzhenitsyn
- (another leader of the Soviet nonconformist movement) before Solzhenitsyn's exile.
During the chaotic years of perestroika, Shafarevich stood up for the basic rights of common people
- and warned that the democracy-related enthusiasm might turn against itself
- if the citizens have basically felt that democracy means the loss of basic security and social justice.
- He has therefore also been labelled as an objector to democracy in "quasi-research" literature.
Krista Berglund defended her doctoral thesis
- at the University of Helsinki on 25 June at 10 am in Hall 5 of the Main Building (Fabianinkatu 33)
- The title of the thesis is "The Vexing Case of Igor Shafarevich, a Russian Political Thinker".
- A summary of the doctoral thesis is available in electronic format at:
- Contact details of the doctoral candidate:
--- Krista Berglund, tel. +358 41 4555927, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
Anna Maria Peltonen, Press Officer, University of Helsinki
- University of Helsinki Communications, 22 June 2009
Bonus - cсылки на труды Шафаревича: http://hojja-nusreddin.livejournal.com/3398380.html