"Novoe Proshloe/The New Past" (NP) is an interdisciplinary peer-reviewed scientific journal that publishes articles in Russian and English on history, cultural anthropology, philology and related fields of social and humanitarian knowledge, without regional and chronological limitations.
The journal is a platform for critical discussion of theoretical and empirical problems, as well as for analysis of modern methodological and methodical approaches to understanding the phenomenon of the past.
On the pages of the journal are published materials - articles, reviews and overviews, and sources, where the past is viewed as a subject of constant processing within the framework of academic and non-academic practices. Of particular interest, there are factors and mechanisms of "the past construction", as well as the context of this process. “Novoe Proshloe/The New Past” focuses on the social, cultural, cognitive, political and technological processes that influence the way individual and group consciousness reflex the past. The analysis of professional and non-professional historical consciousness in this sense is of equal value.
Although the epistemological and empirical significance of historical consciousness has been repeatedly emphasized in humanitarian studies on individual and group identity, as well as cultural, political and social groups at different levels, there is still a significant gap in theoretical reflection on historical consciousness and historical memory. In this regard, more attention is paid to the methodological and theoretical issues of understanding the phenomenon of the past on the tranches of the journal.
We strive to be interesting to our readers, staying within the framework of academic discourse. One of the immutable rules of еру journal is the actualization of research problems through recognizable and metaphorical titles of great books. The selection criterion for us is, on the one hand, the aphoristic and symbolic richness of the verbal image, on the other, the ideological depth and cultural-historical significance of the literary work itself, through the motives and images of which we problematize the theme of the issue. At the same time, it is not strongly required that these texts are to be “fine literature”: we proceed from the fact that high literary merits can be inherent not only in fiction, and not only novels excite the minds of many generations.
The Editorial Board accepts papers for publication in the following areas of research:
- Phenomenon of the past and identity;
- academic practices of representation of the past;
- mass historical representations in different epochs;
- symbols of the past and their role in the functioning of historical consciousness;
- historiographical schools and trends, and their characteristics;
- historical memory and historical oblivion, factors of their formation;
- politics of memory, tools and mechanisms for managing the past;
- collective trauma and its role in the reflection on the past;
- documents and archives, techniques of working with them;
- biographies and shaping of historical consciousness.
The journal publishes reviews and overviews devoted to various problems in Humanities. Copies of books for reviews are to be sent to the address:
Russian Federation, Rostov-on-Don, 344006
105/42 Bolshaya Sadovaya Street
"Novoe Proshloe/The New Past" Editorial Board
Institute of History and International Relations.
The scientific journal "Novoe Proshloe/The New Past" has been published since 2016. The founder and publisher of the journal is "Southern Federal University" (Legal address of the publisher: 344006, Russia, Rostov region, Rostov-on-Don, Bolshaya Sadovaya street, 105/42, http://sfedu.ru).
The frequency of the publication is four times a year in the form of thematic issues. The annual program for the next calendar year is published starting from the second issue of the current year.
The scientific journal “Novoe Proshloe/The New Past”:
"Metamorphoses" (1/2023). The problem of the integration of the North Caucasus is traditionally perceived from the perspective of it being a part of the Russian Empire, from the perspective of the spread of imperial management technologies, norms of social control and cultural standards. This side of the integration process is well represented both in Russian and foreign historiography. However, the internal unification of the territory of the North Caucasus is no less significant. Internal integration manifested itself in the elimination of ethno-territorial isolation, the formation of new administrative borders and practices, the emergence of regional socio-economic and cultural centers, new logistics ties, transport hubs, and a regional market for goods and services. The study of the North Caucasus integration will make it possible to more accurately assess the scale of the transformation of the region during the Imperial and Soviet periods. Within this framework, the search for an optimal model of administrative management and economic zoning of the region was carried out, as well as the development of sub-regional economic specialization. These numerous changes influenced not only the level of political and socio-economic institutions but also directly the structures of everyday life, as well as the images of cultural memory. Therefore, Ovid’s “Metamorphoses” was chosen as a metaphor for various transformations in a certain sequence. We look forward to articles that would present Imperial and Soviet integration practices in a comparative manner, which will allow us to assess the effectiveness of various regional transformation strategies.
"For whom the bell tolls" (2/2023). For a long time, the concept of ideology has been one of the central theoretical categories of humanitarian knowledge. The concept of ideology was criticized from different angles. Some researchers draw attention to the weakness of its theoretical foundations, others insist on numerous internal contradictions, while others argue that criticism of ideology is too moralized or politicized to be used as a tool in the social sciences. Most use the concept of ideology as a metaphor when describing social phenomena of the past and the present, i.e. we use the combination of “bourgeois ideology” to explain the internal mechanisms of bourgeois thought, and “consumption ideology” as a way to describe modern commercial culture.
Any ideology, like the metaphorical bell from the title of Hemingway’s novel, mobilizes potential supporters under its banner and claims to represent a consolidated idea that reflects the interests of the masses. At the same time, any ideological system is full of internal contradictions. During the Cold War, the very texts of Hemingway, especially after his suicide in 1961, were subjected to analysis from the ideological point of view. The moral, religious, political aspects of his works seemed (and, perhaps, turned out to be) more important than the literary merits. It is no coincidence that the first researchers of Hemingway’s work, fierce American patriots, contributed to the nationwide anti-communist campaign in the 1950s and the formation of the ideological beliefs during the Cold War. As a result, the artistic polysemy of Hemingway’s texts gave way to ideological stability and unambiguity, and the author, who preferred to live abroad, expressed doubts about the values of the American way of life, and was skeptical about the world around him, came to be regarded as a spokesman of American ethics. This fact probably reflects the internal logic of the development of any ideology: the desire for homogenization of thought and the need for mass mobilization at the expense of simplifying the surrounding reality.
The main question this issue analyzes is how ideology functions; how it mobilizes supporters, and what motivates people to adhere to different ideological attitudes. Instead of considering the normative aspect and classifying ideologies, this issue asks how internal contradictions function within the framework of ideologies themselves, how in different historical eras they are formulated, represented, overcome at different levels: personal and group levels, ideological and institutional, national and transnational.
The questions planned for discussion are as follows:
1. (Un)freedom in ideologies. What are the factors of transformation and evolution of ideological systems? What are the mechanisms for the dissemination of ideas, and what role does coercion play in this process? Who are the hostages of ideologies – the creators themselves, or those who share these ideas? How is a complex reality dissected in ideological systems and reduced to a set of clichés?
2. Mass and elite aspects in ideology. Robert Jordan, the protagonist of Hemingway’s For whom the bell tolls, asks us if “there [was] ever a people whose leaders were as truly their enemies as this one?” What are the mechanisms of assimilation of elite ideas into mass discourse? What is the degree of idealism in ideologies? How do the plans and ideas of intellectuals relate to their implementations? What remains in the mass consciousness of intellectual constructs?
3. National and transnational aspects in ideology. Ideologies appear as a result of the need for national mobilization, acquiring one if its features – mass character. But how does the national become transnational? What national ideological materials are used to create transnational ideological traditions?
4. The role of violence in the assertion of ideologies. “The Fair of Liberty and from this day, when these are extinguished, the town and the land are ours”. The heroes of the novel raise question of dehumanization of the ideological enemies and legitimization of the sacrifice. What determines the degree of acceptability of violence for different ideological systems? Is the revolution not only the “midwife of history” but also of ideology? And more broadly, what kind of conflicts and traumas are capable of generating and adapting ideologies?
5. Heroes and victims of ideologies / heroes and victims in ideologies. What is the role of ideological symbols? How are they developed? What is their life cycle? How do ideas and symbols correlate? Is there a gradual replacement of ideas with their symbols? And, finally, who are the victims of ideologies?
"Byzantism and Russia" (3/2023). The year 2023 is marked by two anniversaries that are extremely significant for Russian culture and social thought. 170 years have passed since the birth of Vladimir Sergeevich Solovyov, one of the greatest Russian philosophers and predecessor of the Silver Age. Half a millennium has passed since the moment when Philotheus of Pskov coined the formula that is considered the calling card of the Russian Middle Ages: “two Romes have fallen, the third stands, and there will be no fourth”. The intersection of the symbolic vectors embodied in these two iconic figures of the Russian history of ideas is the text, the title of which has been chosen as the topic of this issue. The essay “Byzantism and Russia” was published by Vladimir Solovyov four years before his death, in 1896, and can be attributed to the final texts of the philosopher, because it expresses his most intimate thoughts about the fate of Russia, its place in history and divine plan for humanity. This text can be viewed both as a reflection of the ideological and political agenda of the late 19th century, and as a landmark in the centuries-old dispute over the historical path of Russia, where the last point has not yet been put. At the same time, this work says a lot about the author himself, whose insight made it possible to see in the idea of “Byzantine heritage” something that neither the accusers of “La misérable Byzance”, nor its apologists from the conservators, nor politicians and publicists who dreamed of the conquest of Constantinople. Having chosen the idea of the Third Rome as the focal point of the analysis, V.S. Soloviev came closest to understanding the meaning that Filofey Pskovsky put into it. The core of this idea is not absolute autocracy, and certainly not the dream of the throne of Constantinople, but a warning about the threat of a repetition of the fate of the two fallen Christian kingdoms that could not bear the spiritual burden and moral responsibility.
On this anniversary we propose to reflect on the eternal questions, the comprehension of which are prompted by the insights and warnings of two Russian prophets: the “Byzantine vector” of Russian history and its interpretation in Russian historiosophy and social thought; the place and significance of the heritage of the Byzantium in the culture, ideology, political and legal traditions of Russia; the inspiring motives and dangerous temptations of doctrines and concepts, derived from the theory “Moscow, the Third Rome”; the extent to which these ideas can be relevant today, and to what extent we remain hostage to their misinterpretations.
"Distant Land" (4/2023). The interpretation of the development of the Russian Far East as the history of the colonization of new territories by the Empire is widespread in Russian and foreign historiography. We suggest adjusting the optics and evaluating these processes in the light of global history. This will allow us to move away from national and state narratives and look at the history of the Far East as a cross-border interaction process of various social elements (institutions, people, living environment, etc.). No less relevant in this context is the problem of distance, when remoteness and weak ties with the region naturally gave rise to new forms of political, economic and social relations in the state structure. Alternating between different scales of analysis reveals mechanisms for overcoming cultural and political boundaries at the interstate, regional and local levels. It is no coincidence that the novel by N.P. Zadornov “Distant Land” is a story about complex history of interactions of various ethnic groups, religions, institutions and, of course, people in a transboundary environment. We suggest these topics in a broad chronological framework, taking into account the historically established ties in the Far East.
"Essays on the Bursa" (1/2024). The issue’s topic is reminiscent of the mid-19th century bestseller, which shocked the public with descriptions of the morals in the theological school, where cramming, poverty, hunger, beatings and harassment of students by cruel teachers and older comrades were widespread. The story set the framework for the perception of spiritual education and the daily life of students of theological schools and seminaries for many years, becoming a paradigmatic text not only for secular readers, who unconditionally accepted all the horrors of the church school, but also for the priests themselves, who subsequently wrote their memoirs about the years of youth with patterns of N.G. Pomyalovsky. Based on the “Essays on the Bursa”, we suggest turning to the history of religious education in the Russian Empire, focusing not on the content of a series of educational reforms or the content of curricula, but on its anthropological dimension: everyday life, social practices, interpersonal relationships, norms and their violations, specific culture of a closed educational institution. Within the framework, we expect to have a discussion about the influence of literary bestsellers, such as “Essays on the Bursa”, on contemporaries, including government officials who make political decisions under their influence, as well as historians who fall under the charm of a literary text.
Each of special topics will cover no less 25% of the volume. Editorial Board hope on these topics as perspective for the journal progress. The journal enlargement is thought as mutual development together with our authors.
The main journal topics are (No)Doubt, Main Issue, Theory and Methodology, Articles, Discussions, Sources, Reviews, Academic Chronicle.