—-“Primacy of the state” and “communal mass consciousness”—-
However, this mixture of peoples also produced many advantages. According to the liberal writer Boris Akunin: “It would be misleading to consider the ‘Asian’ component an intractable disease or a birth trauma to Russia. From the historical perspective, this, our genetic characteristic, has not only created problems, but also given us bonuses.
”First, without this ‘Asian’ component, Russia would not have the many hues of culture and spirituality that it has. Second, the primacy of the ‘state’ and this ‘communal’ mass consciousness have repeatedly helped Russia survive grave upheavals that purely European states could not, and did not survive.
”And so it was later, when Russia turned out to be stronger than two of the most powerful military empires — first Napoleon’s, and then Hitler’s. That ruggedness, ability to come together during times of tests, those huge reserves of strength, the willingness to sacrifice, the famous readiness to ‘pay the price’ — all of that is Asian, not European.”
(Francis Fukuyama gives Russia a similar treatment)