Russian Orthodoxy, Nationalism and the Soviet State during the Gorbachev Years, 1985-91

1st Edition

Sophie Kotzer

February 27, 2020 Forthcoming
Reference - 200 Pages - 5 B/W Illustrations
ISBN 9780367420093 - CAT# 325517
Series: Routledge Religion, Society and Government in Eastern Europe and the Former Soviet States

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This book examines how the Russian Orthodox Church developed during the period of Gorbachev’s rule in the Soviet Union, a period characterised by perestroika (reform) and glasnost (openness). It charts how official Soviet policy towards religion in general and the Russian Orthodox Church changed, with the Church enjoying significantly improved status. It also discusses, however, how the improved relations between the Moscow Patriarchate and the state, and the Patriarchate’s support for Soviet foreign policy goals, its close alignment with Russian nationalism and its role as a guardian of the Soviet Union’s borders were not seen in a positive light by dissidents and by many ordinary believers, who were disappointed by the church’s failure in respect of its social mission, including education and charitable activities.

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