National Character

Russian philosopher Vladimir Solovyov (not to be confused with the propagandist of the same name) was a friend of Dostoyevsky’s and inspired one of the characters in The Brothers Karamazov. Unlike Dostoyevsky, though, he wasn’t an anti-Semite. Solovyov was a defender of the rights of the Jews in the Russian empire and even learned Hebrew.

This is how Solovyov (who was a descendant of the famous Ukrainian philosopher Hryhory Skovoroda) described the Russian national character:

Solovyov died in 1900, so it’s not like the crazy behavior we are seeing from the Russians today is new. Ironically, the chief Russian propagandist today has the same name as the philosopher. He dedicated his life to promoting exactly the worldview that his historical namesake described over a century ago.

4 thoughts on “National Character

  1. Great post! Loved the quote.

    Just read those news about Russians suing iPhone for leaving them w/o services they paid for, so started thinking again about the rights and powers of private companies vs users and states:

    В России через суд потребовали от Apple вернуть в страну айфоны

    I am especially interested since today iPhone or another private company boycotts Russia, tomorrow – Israel.

    It’s also another topic for a post / video. 🙂 🙂

    Today we may be against Russian behavior and for Russians feeling the results on themselves, but won’t we feel the same on ourselves soon, one way or another?


    1. Of course. It’s the neoliberal post-nation state. And it sucks bullets. We are behind Russia on this journey but we are catching up, and it’s not good. I say, let’s stop and reconsider.


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