Can you become a Russian or Russian can only be born? Response is simple.
It is possible to become a Russian, but in order for someone to become a Russian, there must be a sufficiently large number of people who were born Russian.
Any ethnos, even any nation, although a nation is a more complex, political concept, always has a certain ethnic, anthropological core from people with close anthropological, genetic, cultural traits. Representatives of this nucleus are obviously more similar to each other than to representatives of the surrounding communities. They speak a similar language, lead, for the most part, a similar way of life, have a common historical memory that divides the world for them to "their own" and "strangers."
In order for a representative of another ethnic group to "become" a member of the ethnos, he needs a model to which he could be likened, and a group with which he could mix. If such a pattern exists and there is such a group, then assimilation, that is, the entry of new members into the ethnos, is relatively easy.
In the first generation there is a will to approach, in the second - everyone lives a common life, in the third all have already married, in the fourth differences sometimes they are not found at all - they will have to study them for a long time, looking at the anthropological features, or digging through genetic maps.
For example, in the northern group of the Russian ethnos, more than 30% (and in the Russian population as a whole - 15%) have the male Y chromosome haplogroup N1C. This means that their direct ancestors in the male line once belonged to groups related to a whole spectrum of peoples - from the Finns to the Yakuts. For centuries these groups lived next to the Slavs, learned their language and culture, intermixed with each other, and today, without digging into the "blood", there is practically no way to distinguish the descendant of Drevlyans or Northerners from the descendant of Chudis or Meri. And this fact, incidentally, refutes the stupidity of "the origin of the mother does not mean anything" - hence, especially if it is a question of decades-long and centuries-old family ties.
On the other hand, for the Slavs, as for all eastern Indo-Europeans, the Y chromosome R1a1 is characteristic. Its bearers are 46% of Russians, more only from Belarusians (also Russian) and Poles. Undoubtedly, representatives of this group created, so to speak, a generalized Slavonic genetic and anthropological face of the Russians.
However, at its core, there is nothing "Slavic" in this group - it is an ancient East Indo-European one. It is revealed in 68% of Tajiks, 65% of Kirghiz, a quarter of Tatars and Bashkirs, the ancestors of these peoples are Indo-European populations that were once Turkified, Islamized, acquired a number of new linguistic, cultural, historical features, and their genetics did not make them " more Slavs "than the descendants of Chudis and Meri.
The people, the ethnos is not a genetic or anthropological group. Biological similarity is an important factor of psychological comfort, sometimes - the primary identification mark of one's own / alien, but no more. Transform a certain human population into an ethnos general system of adaptation to the landscape, the common traditional culture, on the basis of which education is carried out, a common living language and a common religious and historical identity.
Every large and small ethnic group has an environment in which it feels like a fish in water, among which it can live. It is the unity of this environment that most often determines the area of distribution and psychology (and, of course, the economic life) of the ethnos.
For example, for Russians, such an enclosing landscape is network of large and small rivers with convenient transition from one pool to another. Russia turned out to be so huge precisely because in the territory of our settlement this network is so huge, with its adjacent seas stretching to Amur, Ussuri, Alaska and Chukotka. Mountains, steppes, taiga, tundra — everything turned out during the resettlement of Russians as a secondary element, if the main, basic element was present — rivers.
The primary ethno-forming significance is the culture of infant and child's traditional education - grandmother's tales, the first games and the picture of the world reproduced in them, the family environment with its language, material culture, toys. When we say that we suck up our ethnic identity with the mother's milk, this is precisely what is meant.
In most cultures, mothers, especially grandmothers, are the carriers of such primary education. Only in those societies where the composition of mothers is largely random, is formed largely from captives, representatives of neighboring tribes, the role of men in primary education and the definition of ethnic self-awareness is much higher. But in any case, a long family tradition is of central importance - the importance of grandparents in ethnic self-determination is often much greater than that of fathers and mothers.
Language plays a huge role in ethnic self-determination. Just need to understand correctly what is meant here. Critics of the importance of language as an ethno-determining factor like to refer to the mythological "philologist-Slavist from the American University," who, having learned Pushkin's language perfectly, would have been a greater Slav than the illiterate Russian peasant with his "tujinny" and "lodges."
Not really. Brilliantly learned vocabulary and grammar, a philologist, as well as an illiterate guest worker, does not speak Russian fluently. The speech of one Russian person, built on the basis of Russian roots and inflexions, will always be understood by another Russian, but it will be completely incomprehensible to a foreigner, whether he is a taxi driver or even a philologist.
A native native speaker of the native language will build the text in a way that a foreigner who has grown up in another language element can never do it.
Most of the developed religions of the modern world are supranational. In this sense, of course, religion can not be considered an ethno-determining factor by itself. But in practice, religion is a certain way of life, a certain system of ethical and ritual prohibitions, a definite system of attitudes to the connection with the higher principle. And so it forms the set of life practices accepted and rejected, which denote very important ethnic boundaries.
For example, the world of Easter eggs and the world of sacrifices on Kurban Bairam (and behind these rituals of ideas) practically do not have a chance to coincide. You can go from one to another, as many times passed, for example, Tatar murzes, who took Orthodoxy. But you can not combine them. At the same time, within these worlds, group mergers and acquisitions of ethnoses are purely a technical problem.
On the role of ethnic historical memory, the sense of national identity, there is much to say, except that it, unlike other elements, is most often constructed from above. Therefore, a person who has a desire to become a Russian does not have any problems absorbing this floor of identity. Most of it is taken not from the depths of folk legends, but from books.
That is why, by the way, education and culture do not remove ethical and cultural contradictions, and often excite them. This was repeatedly noted, for example, by researchers of a phenomenon such as Hindu nationalism in India. For centuries, the Hindus lived side by side with Muslims, not knowing what the Islamic conqueror Mahmud Ghaznavi was doing in India, and now, having read the school textbook, they know and, accordingly, remember. Therefore, the tough anti-Islamic rhetoric of Narendra Modi is more popular among people who can read than would be popular among the unskilled.
So, the people, the ethnos is a community of people, in the core of which there is a population of phenotypically and genotypically similar people, related to the commonality of adaptation to the landscape, the generality of the traditions of upbringing, the commonality of the living language and the common historical memory. If this people has a political organization and, most importantly, considers its ethnic specialty as the basis for such an organization, it is appropriate to call it a nation.
Can an outsider become a part of the people? In most cases it is easy - the number of people on earth who are really closed from outsiders is extremely small and the Russians do not exactly belong to them. First, the neighborhood, the general adaptation model and the general memory are established, the language and the upbringing tradition are assimilated, and then with the help of marriages the individual or even a group (up to whole ethnic groups) is integrated into the nucleus.
Do I need to become a Russian?
In Russia, hostility to assimilation is quite strong, as it has several influential enemies. First, liberal multinationals, for which every man of mixed origin is a find, since he can drive a setup, which is personally more advantageous for him, Russia, in which the Russian ethnicity will be suppressed.
Secondly, the nationalists and the crypto-separatist elites of some of the republics, perfectly aware that a significant part of the citizens of Russia would like and would like to assimilate with the Russians, and in some cases, like the Finno-Ugrian Orthodox peoples, the line is so thin that the difference has to be artificially planted on.
Thirdly, neo-Nazis and racists, their role is insignificant, but their chatter about "blood spoilage" they effectively reinforce the first two groups "from the opposite."
In my opinion, it is possible and necessary to become a Russian. The modern world is the world not only of great nations, but also of large ethnic groups integrating small and medium groups.
"Multiculturalism" imposed on the West, and to us, in reality is not viable, since almost everywhere it is accompanied by a rollback to the wildest archaic. A huge number of people want to speak both in their own language in the language of a great culture, be integrated into a great tradition of national memory, they want to be their own large number of people and feel with them a certain physical relationship and similarity. All this in Russia means integration into the Russian ethnos.
An alternative to such integration is not the flourishing of a lot of small cute ethnic groups, but the formation of other, non-Russian big identities and projects - the Greater Caucasus, the Idel project, etc. Within their framework, they will construct their own national memory (it is likely - about "Russian invaders") and create their own large ethnic groups that will one day require the status of nations and independent statehood.
In other words, the artificial deterrence of integration with the Russians of other peoples of Russia is a mine under our unified statehood in the future.
A holy place is never empty. Moreover, allegations of the violent nature of Russification are completely false. On the contrary, in Russia, Russification is a people's natural spontaneous process. Violence associated with the use of administrative resources, drank budgets and blackmail, is precisely the counteraction and deterrence of such Russification.
We have a mass of cases in which people are denied the satisfaction of their legitimate desire to become Russian. And this directly contradicts the Article 26 of the Constitution, which establishes the right of everyone to determine their own nationality independently. People are coerced into a different identity, then they bribe it. In particular, it is infinitely more profitable to engage in the development of national cultures than the development of Russian culture.
And all this denial of the right to be Russian densely polished by some imaginary "offense of the people", which will happen, if not to prevent Russification.
Forgive me, whose offense, if a significant part of these peoples themselves want to become Russians? Of course, not themselves, but the crypto-separatist elites, for whom the ethnic contradictions in our country have turned into a cash cow with a bottomless udder.
Being Russian is actually quite simple. Russian culture is alien to pretentiousness and arrogance, in a good sense of the word “all-human” and alien to some incomprehensible and specific practices, willingly incorporates all the healthy elements of other cultures. This property is an outstanding Russian national thinker I.L. Solonevich in his wonderful book “People’s Monarchy” called "Livable".
In fact, the only thing Russians can not say is tolerated is the double bottom, situations when someone starts to manipulate identities, for example Russian and Penguin.
When a man of Penguin origin states: "I, as a Russian person, think that we need to immediately repent before the penguins and atone for guilt" - this really causes different bad feelings.
In continuation of this property, Russian identity, of course, is quite total. Russians readily accept everything and everything in their own way. But they really do not like it when they are poked in the nose, that it is someone else's. If you long and with the pressure to tell the Russian that the matryoshka doll is a Japanese doll, you will be looked at in a strange way.
In other words, Russian identity exposes, by and large, only one requirement - refusal to manipulate and dilute this identity. True, for many this requirement becomes an unbearable burden.
And what does Russian identity give?
We have already passed the times when it was extremely unfashionable to be Russian, to the extent that even other "Russian nationalists" invented some additional differences for themselves, for example, the Russian peasantry was scolded, but whoever had this opportunity tried to sign off from Russian and under the passport, and on a muzzle.
Today, it is generally prestigious to be Russian, even in the West this word provokes, if not rapture, then fearful horror. And this means to belong to a great nation of great historical significance and exceptional achievements, to a grandiose in complexity and richness of culture, to a creative impulse aimed at increasing our identity.
That is, today we all, regardless of ethnic origin, become more Russian. How does this happen?
Look, for example, at the Russian cuisine, which was recently declared by many non-existent, read the books of Maxim Syrnikov and Vlada Piskunova. And about the same process takes place in any area that you take. That is to be Russian today is not only mastering, but also creation.
Today, as an ethnos and as a nation, we open and rediscover ourselves, and in some ways even invent ourselves after a century of nationwide fainting. And we still have a lot of work ahead of us. Fascinating work.