University chair of North Studies, North-Eastern Federal University, Yakutsk, Russia
This article is based on the empirical data gained from a previous study “Ethnic-confessional relations in the Republic of Sakha (Yakutia) in 2011- 2013”. In the mid-nineties in the 20th century, the number of nationalities that were nontypical for the Far East, Siberia and the Far North of Russia began to enlarge, and the trend continues year by year. According to the analysis results, people who migrate are attracted to the republic. The capital of the republic, the industrial cities of Yakutsk, Mirny, and Aldan, as well as the settlements of Niznij Bestyakh of the Megino-Kangalasskij district and Kysyl-Syr of the Viluiskij district, are the center of the migration stream. To define the ethnic and confessional complementariness of the local population, a test-scale by Yu.I Zhegusov was used. The authors of the study refused a simple dichotomous division of ‘insiders’ and ‘outsiders’, and suggested a more complicated structure. In ethnic-confessional complementariness, the following levels and degrees were used:
- positive complementariness is expressed as ‘insiders’ who may be closely related( friendly terms, blood relationship)
- neutral complementariness is expressed as ‘outsiders’ with whom one may co-exist, but avoids close relations
- negative complementariness is expressed as ‘outsiders’ who are undesirable to live in a neighborhood with
- critical level of complementariness is expressed as ‘enemies’ who constitute a danger and threat.
On the whole, the research shows some peculiarities:
Russians are mostly comfortable with representatives of other ethnic groups and religions. In Yakutia, they feel confident in the context of ethnic and migration process intensification.
Yakuts show an alarmist public mood and worry about their future, and they are afraid of losing their ethnic status and national identity as a result of the uncontrollable process of migration and assimilation.
Keywords: ethnicity, complimentarity, nationalism, Russia, Yakutia