Əsas səhifə Soviet Studies What Is Asia to Us? Russia's Asian Heartland Yesterday and Todayby Milan Hauner

What Is Asia to Us? Russia's Asian Heartland Yesterday and Todayby Milan Hauner

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Tom:
43
İl:
1991
Dil:
english
Jurnal:
Soviet Studies
DOI:
10.2307/152502
Fayl:
PDF, 185 KB
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1

Language Planning in the Soviet Unionby Michael Kirkwood

İl:
1991
Dil:
english
Fayl:
PDF, 185 KB
2

Notes

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1954
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University of Glasgow
Review
Reviewed Work(s): What Is Asia to Us? Russia's Asian Heartland Yesterday and Today by
Milan Hauner
Review by: Paul B. Henze
Source: Soviet Studies, Vol. 43, No. 1 (1991), pp. 198-199
Published by: Taylor & Francis, Ltd.
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/152502
Accessed: 16-09-2016 23:53 UTC
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198

REVIEWS

regional
regional
integration,
integration,
and the
and
ability
theof
ability
Latin Americans
of LatintoAmericans
conduct independent
to conduct
foreign
independen
policies.
policies.
Domestic
Domestic
topicstopics
includeinclude
the Church,
thearmed
Church,
forces,
armed
labour forces,
unions, bourgeois
labour unions, b
political
political
parties,
parties,
and alternative
and alternative
paths-peaceful
paths-peaceful
or revolutionary-to
or revolutionary-to
communism. A third
communism
section
section
of of
thethe
bookbook
contains
contains
case studies
caseofstudies
Mexico, Chile,
of Mexico,
Brazil and
Chile,
Argentina,
Brazil
showing
and Argentina
how
howSoviet
Soviet
perceptions
perceptions
affected
affected
policy outcomes
policyinoutcomes
these settings.
in these
The final
settings.
section usefully
The final section
sums
sumsupup
thethe
impact
impact
on Soviet
on Soviet
policies during
policies
theduring
Brezhnevthe
era of
Brezhnev
c; hanges inera
Soviet
of changes in S
perceptions
perceptions
of Latin
of Latin
America,
America,
emphasising
emphasising
the growingthe
sophistication
growingofsophistication
these perceptions,
of these per

and
andpredicts
predicts
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in theinfuture,
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despite its
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the Westernof
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of
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Moscow
will make
will
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make increasing
efforts to expand
efforts
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its diplomatic
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lev
Latin
LatinAmerica.
America.
Prizel's
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epilogue,
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designed designed
to bring events
to bring
into the
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Gorbachev
into
era,
the
suffers
Gorbachev era,

the
thefate
fate
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so many
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of Sovietologists
since Gorbachev
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the to powersoundest
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prognostications
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are often
are
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outpaced
publication
onbypublication
fast-moving and
by improbafast-moving and i
ble realities.

While this reader does not dispute Prizel's right to limit the focus of his research, nor
quarrel with his assessment that 'Soviet-Cuban relations have an entirely different
character from those between the Soviet Union and the rest of Latin America', (p. ix) it is
fair to point out that the less than full discussion of Cuba in this work leaves open an
exceedingly large and important field begging for further investigation. In another area, the
author's assertion that 'because there are very few Soviet specialists on Latin America, the

role of these scholars in policy formulation is significant' (p. ix) does not appear to have
been established; however, the weight of the book's evidence does solidly support the

significant hypothesis that 'changing Soviet perceptions, as reflected in the Soviet scholarly
and journalistic communities, have a profound impact on official thinking in the USSR and
on its policy formulation'. (pp. ix-x).
From Prizel's effective detailing in one regional setting of the linkage between a growing

sophistication of policy advice and a more realistic and flexible policy, we may justifiably
infer that Soviet scholars, working in this and other world regions during the Brezhnev

years, were preparing a necessary general basis for the greater pragmatism and deideologisation of Soviet foreign policy as a whole that was to characterise Gorbachev's 'new
political thought'.

Ohio

State

University

JAN

S.

ADAMS

Milan Hauner, What is Asia to Us? Russia'
Unwin Hyman, 1990, xvi+ 264 pp., ?30.00
THE SUBTITLE describes the subject matter of this book. The author never addresses the

question which forms the principal title and the book does not deal, except incidentally,
with India, China or the rest of Asia and its relationship to Europe and America. But since
the world tends to forget that the Soviet empire includes a vast portion of the Asian

continent, the book is valuable for the historical background it provides, which is not easily
accessible in any other past or recent publication. This will be useful to any reader
concerned with the future of Central Asia, Siberia and the Soviet Far East if and when the
Soviet Union is reformed as a loose commonwealth or breaks up.
Chapters 2 to 5 examine Russian writing about the importance of the Asian portions of

the empire with a formidable array of sources cited in the text and references in footnotes.
The story is resumed for the Soviet period in chapters 9 and 10. In between the author
examines the heartland theories of Mackinder and Haushorer and others associated with

them and the book becomes heavy going, for the discussion falls into rather esoteric

argumentation about where the centre of Eurasia really is or ought to be. More relevant is

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REVIEWS

199

the
thediscussion
discussion
in the
in the
finalfinal
chapters
chapters
of the book
of the
of the
book
impact
of the
on Siberia
impact
andon
Central
Siberia
Asiaand
of Central A
Gorbachev's reforms.

History has unfolded so fast in Eastern Europe and the Soviet Union during the past year

that some of the speculation-and questions posed-in the final chapter are already badly
dated-or answered. Soviet Central Asians have become remarkably assertive in 1990.
Momentum towards autonomy, or even independence, draws them towards the Middle
East and South Asia rather than Siberia or the Far East. Siberians, on the other hand, are
oriented primarily towards the Far East and tend to see their interests in separate
arrangements with Japan, Korea and other Pacific Rim countries. Gorbachev's efforts to
develop constructive relations with South Korea put him, in effect, in a race with groups in

Irkutsk, Yakutsk and the Maritime Province who are already thinking concretely about
closer relations with dynamic Pacific Rim countries. They may see Gorbachev as a
supernumerary in this process.

The book only touches at various points on the interrelationships across the SovietChinese borders where the Turkic peoples of Soviet Central Asia and those of Chinese
Turkestan are taking full advantage of opportunities to forge closer links and play both
Russian and Chinese neo-imperialists off against each other. The same is true of the
Mongols, who have the advantage of an independent country as a base, and who are
exploiting the opportunities Soviet military withdrawal and relaxation of tight Soviet
political tutelage provide to give priority to their own national interests.
More analysis of the form these trends are likely to assume over the coming decade would
be more enlightening than speculation about the relevance of Mackinder and Haushorer to
Gorbachev's goals in Asia, if he indeed knows himself what they are.
RAND Corporation, Washington, DC PAUL B. HENZE

Michael Kirkwood, ed., Language Planning in the Soviet Union. Basingstoke and London:
Macmillan, in association with the School of Slavonic and East European Studies,
University of London, 1989, x+230 pp., ?35.00.
THESE DAYS anyone writing on contemporary Soviet affairs is faced with the prospect that by
the time the work is published developments will have moved so rapidly that the 'finished'

product requires updating and perhaps even reconsideration. To a degree, this applies to
this collection of studies on various aspects of language planning and language politics in the

Soviet Union. I use the word politics consciously here because as these contributions show,
not long after 1917 the scientific work of language planning began to be exploited for the
political purposes of Soviet nationalities policy. Perhaps had the book been published in
1990, we could have seen how the language question in the various non-Russian republics
became a major issue not only between the republic and the centre, but in several cases
within the republics themselves (e.g. the Baltic States, Moldavia, and to a lesser extent the
Ukraine).

Clearly, this is in no way intended as a criticism of the editor and his collaborators, who
have produced a fairly comprehensive and informative book for students and specialists
alike. Kirkwood introduces the reader to the topic with a discussion of the concepts and
methodology of language planning and provides basic information on the ethnonational

composition of the Soviet Union (according to the 1979 census) and the various language
groups. The following two chapters are surveys of developments covering 1917-1953
(Simon Crisp) and the post-1953 period (Isabelle T. Kreindler). Kreindler's contribution is
particularly valuable as it is the most up to date analysis (through 1987) of the overall
situation in the Soviet Union that is presently available. Nigel Grant treats the problem of

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