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The Role of International Mechanisms in Promoting the Cultural Rights of National Minorities in a Changing Russian Federation (2000-2011)

Prina, F; (2012) The Role of International Mechanisms in Promoting the Cultural Rights of National Minorities in a Changing Russian Federation (2000-2011). Doctoral thesis , UCL (University College London). Green open access

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Abstract

The thesis analyses how, if at all, accession to international standards makes a difference to national minorities in Russia in the advancement of their cultural rights, focusing on the period 2000-2011. It further analyses the factors that influence particular forms of implementation of international standards. The study uses data from semi-structured interviews, as well as from legislation, legal judgements and Council of Europe documents. It focuses on three minorities as case studies: the Karelians, Mordovians and Tatars. The research is divided into three parts: 1) Practice and Law, investigating how the specific characteristics of the Russian domestic legal environment and of the relevant international standards generate a particular type of dynamics between the two; 2) Homogenisation, examining whether international standards can suspend or reverse Russia’s culturally homogenising tendencies since the 2000s; 3) Exclusion, investigating to what extent, if at all, international standards may modify the dynamics of majority-minority relations by facilitating the introduction of a form of participation that is effective, in the area of decision- and policy-making on minorities’ cultural rights. The thesis concludes that the role of international standards in the area of minorities’ cultural rights is restricted in scope in Russia. Two sets of reasons are identified. First, specific features of Russian politics and society: (i) Russia’s selective implementation of international law; (ii) the alternation of localism and centralism; (iii) Russia’s homogenising centralisation and ‘managed diversity’; (iv) the absence of guarantees for the upholding of minorities’ participatory rights, resulting in fictitious forms of participation. The second set of reasons relate to the complexities and weaknesses of international standards on minority rights themselves.

Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Title: The Role of International Mechanisms in Promoting the Cultural Rights of National Minorities in a Changing Russian Federation (2000-2011)
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
Language: English
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1357425
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