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catalogue – 43669
Until 01.01.2019 - Scientific Yearbook of the Institute of Philosophy and Law of the Ural Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences

ISSN 2686-7206 (Print)

ISSN 2686-925X (Оnlinе)

Davydov Dmitry
The article raises the question of the heuristic potential of the theory of socioeconomic formations. The author tries to challenge the opinion shared by many researchers that this theory was an exclusively ideological product aimed at justifying the political regime that prevailed in the USSR. Behind dogmatic template-like judgments the lively discussions aimed at elucidating the universal laws of social development were hidden. The results of these discussions do not lose their relevance today as many scientists are discussing again the prospects of a post-capitalist society. The theory of socioeconomic formations is aimed at finding relevant criteria for highlighting the historical stages of social development within the framework of a materialistic understanding of history. As such a criterion, the prevailing forms of ownership, historical types of technology, and the specifics of relations of production are proposed. At the same time, the article substantiates that each of these criteria had produced many problems. Thus, the traditional Eurocentric scheme for changing the prevailing forms of ownership was poorly coordinated with the social processes taking place in the East. The technical and technological criterion turned out to be extremely difficult in terms of identifying the qualitative stages of scientific and technological development. The emphasis on the specifics relations of production led to poorly consistent conclusions that there was a fundamental difference between Soviet socialism and Western industrial capitalism. The article attempts to discard obsolete dogmatic and ideological constructions from the theory of social formations. At the same time, it proposes using such a criterion for highlighting social formations as the prevailing sources of consumer values (natural processes, controlled natural processes, labor, and creativity). This criterion allows to connect qualitatively a quantitative technical and technological criterion with political and legal phenomena, such as prevailing forms of ownership, systems of relations of power, exploitation and exclusion, etc., into a single causal scheme. An attempt was made to redefine social formations (pre-class, class-class, class, personalist), based on the corresponding prevailing sources of consumer values. The conclusion is made that the historical forms of socialism and capitalism are different modifications of the class socioeconomic formation (based on labor as the predominant source of consumer values). The emergence of a personalistic socioeconomic formation based on creativity as the main source of consumer values is an extremely controversial process. This formation will have its internal logic and contradictions; therefore, the categories characterizing it should not be confused with the categories of a class socioeconomic formation that is gradually fading into the past.
Keywords: theory of socioeconomic formations; socioeconomic formations; capitalism; socialism; communism; Marxism; post-capitalism; mode of production.
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