The article considers reasons that determine the very possibility of the townspeople moving to the village for permanent residence. The non-standard grammatical form of the question in the title in Russian stresses the double context of the Russian word “why—from what”: on the one hand, it is a pronoun with a preposition (from what) indicating a certain phenomenon; on the other hand, it is an interrogative pronoun (why), a synonym of the adverb “wherefore” asking about reasons for moving to the village. In recent decades, the scale and speed of the civilizational development have changed the functionality of the place of residence, which makes the researchers reconsider their previous approaches to the study of the reasons of migration from the city to the countryside. However, in contemporary sociological works, both Russian and Western, little attention is paid to the issue of the townspeople moving to permanent residence in the countryside, as compared to the studies of the reverse process—the migration of villagers to the city. Based on the analysis of the interviews data, the article focuses on the reasons that determine the possible and necessary decisions of the townspeople to choose a new place of residence under the current conditions of everyday rural life. The author emphasizes that such reasons, which explain a seemingly ordinary and rational fact of the townspeople moving to the village for permanent residence, help to understand the evolution of life practices in both rural and urban social systems.
townspeople, village, former townspeople, villagers, migration, everyday practices, rural world, phenomenon, fact
Vinogradskaya Olga Ya., Senior Researcher, Center for Agrarian Studies, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration. Prosp. Vernadskogo, 82, Moscow, 119571.
The article considers key reasons for townspeople moving to the village as a permanent residence. The author believes that the main reason is that the technological world of the big city forcibly deprives the man of subjectivity and does not allow him to influence continuous plunge into mandatory daily household routine and everyday endless cycle. The daily technological routine of urban life enhances the feeling of hopelessness and even danger of everyday practices, isolates people from each other. Some townspeople believe that rural world can provide them with a place and nature to live as “human beings”. Townspeople try to at least temporarily escape from the technological world that seized them by getting out of the city to visit one’s country house, by taking a journey, by visiting one’s relatives in the village or, sometimes and today more and more often, by moving to the countryside. Townspeople, unlike villagers, consider the village an unusual expolar space that makes them happier and more creative and provides opportunities for activities that are possible only in this new world. The difference of the new world from the urban “mechanized” one is not the degree of mechanization but that the “technology” no longer subjugates the man but frees him from dangers and provides with opportunities to skillfully and effectively master a variety of innovations.
City, village, former townspeople, villagers, migration, economic practices, technological world, technological development.
Vinogradskaya Olga Ya., Senior Researcher, Center for Agrarian Studies, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration. 119571, Moscow, Prosp. Vernadskogo, 82.