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Emigrants of the Russian Empire: Integrity and Identity

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TThe October Revolution of 1917 has forced the first wave of emigrants to leave Russian Empire.
Russian history knows several such waves during its different periods: World War II, time of Great Repression, Cold War and Iron Curtain. The last wave of the emigrants fell within the time known by some as "Putin decade exodus", a roller coaster of economical insecurity in Russian Federation.
Students, workers, intellectuals and aristocrats headed towards the Western world leaving for good their historical homeland. Some of them left striving towards better future, other to have tried to find new carrier opportunities or relationships. Many have seen emigration as only way to escape from the turbulent time.
Homelands play an invaluable role in forming of human’s character. Therefore moving abroad for many is equivalent to total revaluation of their norms and standards of life.
“Integration can be defined as the interaction between newcomers and existing population through which aspects of culture are adopted and shared”. But how must it felt to leave behind an independent multinational conglomerate, for some gigantic ideological and somewhere very progressive machine like Russia towards old conservative and religious Europe?

"No matter under what circumstances you leave it, home does note cease to be home", said Joseph Brodsky.
Each Russian who enters a new living environment carries a huge emotional “weight” on their shoulders. A massive cultural baggage of Russia among with its controversial past and present and, finally, very much foreign to western world inimitable mentality -these are just a few elements of this complex weight. The last give occasion to a numerous obstacles on the way to one’s integration progress.

Many of ...

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...oficiency leads to psychological complexes and difficulties to penetrate into the actual life.

Strong past is always more present than new built today. Therefore, only dedicated choice can encourage Russians to put aside their nostalgia, stereotypes and social barriers and open their mind to new experiences. They will need to put forth towards self-learning, and more important to adjust the social values of the country adopted, along with maintaining one’s own cultural identity.
For many Russians it will take more then a decade to become an equal member of new sociality.
At the last, as a great man said: “They change their sky, but not their soul who cross the ocean.”

Works Cited

Flaccus, Quintus Horatius, Epistels
Joseph Brodsky, aphorisms
S. Loiko, "Los Angeles Times", 2011 bg.ru/Specials/Emigration N. Khroestaljeva, Psychology of the emigration, PhD, SPGU
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