11 Int'l Migration Rev. 3 (1977)

handle is hein.journals/imgratv11 and id is 1 raw text is: 


East is West and West is East ...

Population Redistribution in the

USSR and its Impact on Society'

Robert A. Lewis
Columbia  University
Richard H. Rowland
California State College-San Bernardino


   The  purpose of this paper is to measure the dispersal of the Russians
into non-Russian areas of the USSR since 1897, and endeavor to explain
this population redistribution in terms of general formulations from the
migration literature. Because the bulk of the Russian migration was to
the urban areas of the non-Russian areas, major emphasis will be placed
upon  the changing shares they have comprised of the urban population
in these areas outside of the RSFSR. We will also consider the prospects of
future migration of non-Russians into Russian areas.
   We  have taken a general approach to the study of demographic and
ethnic processes in the USSR by testing concepts from the demographic
literature in the Soviet context. This is not the usual approach to the
study of these processes in the USSR. In the West, there has been a
tradition in the social sciences and history that maintains that societal
phenomena   are not amenable to laws, largely because they are culturally
conditioned and  historically determined. Others have pointed to the
totalitarian nature of Soviet society and its control over population
processes. The ethnic literature on the USSR originating in the West has
been characterized by considerable emotion, and ethnic processes have
often been viewed largely in terms of conditions unique to the USSR,
such as characteristically Russian traits or Communist ideology. Little
effort has been made to relate ethnic processes in the USSR to the general
experience elsewhere in the world, in particular to patterns in moderniz-
ing, multinational states, and the interrelationships between ethnic and
demographic  processes have largely been neglected. Soviet Marxists claim

'This research was supported by Grant Number HD 05585-04 of the Center for Population
Research of the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, and the
International Institute for the Study of Human Reproduction, Columbia University. This
paper was originally presented at the Conference on Population Change and the Soviet
Nationality Question, Columbia University, December 5-7, 1975.
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