Alma Mater
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Social and legal factors of the emergence of new religious movements in Russia

E.V. Fomin
80,00 ₽

UDC 2-78:316.35             


Egor V. Fomin, Senior Teacher, School of Contemporary Social Sciences at Lomonosov Moscow State University, ORCID 0000-0001-5513-4848, e-mail:


The article identifies and analyzes social and legal factors of the emergence and spread of new religious movements (NRM) in Russia. The interaction of the NRMs with the state, traditional religions, society, and the media in the Soviet Union and Russia in the 1990s is demonstrated from a historical perspective. In terms of legal cases, the laws “On Freedom of Conscience and Religious Organizations” (1990), “On Religion” (1990), “On Freedom of Conscience and Religious Associations” (1997), the Constitution of the Russian Federation (1993) are discussed. Furthermore, the attempts to introduce NRM methods in the work of law enforcement agencies, the State Duma discussions concerning the ideas of the NRMs are in the focus of the research. Explaining the spread of NRMs in Russia, we apply the civilizational approach and note that they are a reflection of the postmodern era from a socio-cultural point of view with their features of multiculturalism and anti-hierarchy. In conclusion, we define the social reasons for the spread of the NRMs: the collapse of the Soviet Union, the destruction of Soviet ideology and identity, the spread of Western values and pseudo-freedoms, the low living standards, search for support and confidence in the future.

Key words: NRM, new religious movements, state-confessional relations, freedom of conscience.



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