Нousehold Inequality and Village Discord: Toward a Post-Socialist Moral Economy

Wegren S. Нousehold Inequality and Village Discord: Toward a Post-Socialist Moral Economy // Russian Peasant Studies. 2016. V.1. №1. P. 122-141

DOI: 10.22394/2500-1809-2016-1-1-122-141

Annotation

The author believes that rural Russia is much more unequal today than during the Soviet period in terms of income and wealth (land). The article describes three periods in the XX century, when rural Russia experienced a significant upheaval in the economic interaction between peasants and their means of production: the Stolypin reform of 1906–1911, the Stalin’s collectivization, and the ending of the Soviet system in the early 1990s. The author analyzes the effects of the market revolution that came with the end of Soviet rule and facilitated the growth of village inequality, and focuses on intra-village relations between different economic strata. The paper has several goals: to quantify the growth in household inequality; to examine intra-village relationships between “rich” and “poor” households; to explore whether high-income households feel communality with the village community. To analyze the level of village discord, the author uses survey data from a geographically diverse sample of 900 rural households. The article argues that the post-socialist moral economy is not based upon state regulated income levels or wealth holdings—rather on opportunity and economic freedom bounded mainly by the energy, willpower, capabilities and adaptability of household members.

Keywords

Village stability, household inequality, village conflict, high- and low-income households, (post-socialist) moral economy, means of production.

About the author

Wegren Stephen, Professor of Political Science at the Southern Methodist University. Dallas, Texas, 75275, USA. E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Read 1479 times Last modified on Mar 22 2023

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