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Home / Issues / № 2, 2014

Teaching science

Vasiliev Y.A., Gubanova A.V.
The study of National History is still one of the most important components of the educational system in Russian universities. This is necessary not only for the students’ general knowledge (which is important itself), but also for their upcoming professional and social activities. Nowadays, while the new national idea has not been developed yet, the best examples from the country’s history remain those of a few life and ideological reference points, which unite the society. On the other hand, many moral principles were shaken within the last fifteen years, the ideals of the past years are not often accepted by today's youth.

Thus, there can’t be a full-fledged personality with an active life and civic stand without the knowledge of the national history. However, this knowledge also has paramount importance for the formation of the personality of the future specialist in financial and economic sphere, as they should possess high moral and ethical qualities, due to the fact that they will deal with large financial and material resources. Well-being of many people and reputation of companies, organizations and institutions will depend on their knowledge and actions.

It is advisable to bring up the best qualities of a person and a citizen in modern students on examples of those people who left a bright trace in the history of our country. There are many outstanding personalities in the history of the Fatherland, exemplary for a future financial-economic sphere employee. We are talking primarily about outstanding statesmen and reformers of M. Speransky, S. Witte, P. Stolypin scale and others who made a substantial contribution to the development of the domestic economy and management. Also it is impossible to ignore economy leaders of the Soviet period, such as G. Sokolnikov, A. Chayanov, V. Kuibyshev, N. Voznesensky, A. Kosygin, and others, who acted in quite different political conditions. Moreover, their examples will enable the students to work out the correct understanding of the relationship between authorities and economy in different historical periods.

It is also necessary to show the immediate participants of production: workers and artisans, peasants and collective farmers, merchants and ordinary entrepreneurs. Students should be aware of not only their living conditions, but also their working conditions, work effectiveness, payment amount and work commitment. They need to know in what conditions the largest entrepreneurs’ dynasties of the pre-revolutionary period rose: The Stroganovs, the Demidovs, the Morozovs, the Tretyakovs, the Eliseevs, who started virtually from scratch and attained a significant position in the field of trade and production. The positive aspects of the work organization in contemporary history (the enthusiasm of the first five-year periods and the labor heroism, Stakhanov movement, Scientific Organization of Labour, creation of working dynasties and others) should not be ignored. Also it is necessary to show negative trends (disclaimer of the material interest of workers, overall planning of the economy, the widespread use of the Gulag prisoners labour, bringing the peasantry to ruin, the transition to the extensive way of development and cost-commodity economy etc.)

We also can't ignore the personalities of the country leaders, during the reign of which there have been carried out significant changes- in the political and, what is more important to us, in economic sphere. We’ll mention only some well-known names (since ancient times to later periods): Princess Olga (the ordering and regulation of tribute collection); Yaroslav the Wise (creating the basis for the law code called the "Rus Truth Law", regulating some financial-economic issues in Kievan Rus; Ivan the Terrible (creation of a departmental system, the prototype of modern Ministries, changes in the remuneration system of local administration (voevodes) – cancellation of fiefs, the introduction of penalties for bribes);Tsar Alexei Mikhailovich (creating of the Sobornoye Ulozheniye - the largest collection of laws of the time which includes an economic section, completion of the peasants enslavement; Peter I and Catherine II (large-scale reforms that changed the state system and the national economy); Alexander II (the abolition of serfdom, the transition to the capitalist mode of production); Alexander III (creation of the domestic industry, streamlining of financial systems and monetary circulation); V. Lenin (the elimination of private property, the rejection of market economy - "war communism" and the introduction of New Economic Policy); I. Stalin (collectivization and industrialization in the USSR); N. Khrushchev (the establishment of the civil engineering industry, the development of Virgin lands); L. Brezhnev (the exploration of the riches of Siberia); M. Gorbachev (political and economic changes of the socialist system); B. Yeltsin (the return to the market economy, privatization).

However, it is necessary to treat the personalities of rulers and reformers objectively, it is impossible to paint them only in white and black. Not always a statesman combined the skills of a good leader with a broad knowledge and high moral. Not always the methods and pace of reforms were justified. Of course, every transformation of the Russian economy bears the imprint of the reformer’s personality; his attitude to reality, to the intended. In this respect, the study of economic aspects of Russian history should look like not just as study of industry and agriculture indexes changes, etc. The role of a leader’s personality and the population in the development of the national economy should be also shown.

In this respect, the discipline "National History" has some advantages over the subjects "Economic History" and "History of Economic Doctrines". It allows, without paying attention to the scientific foundation of the changes in the economic sphere, to see the reform process considering a certain historical period, factors influencing the results, different opinions not only of experts (economists, financiers, entrepreneurs, and others), but also of politicians, the attitude to changes at the local level, among ordinary people. This forces students to think about such concepts as the reforms "price" (in the human sense) and their effect in the distant future, the unpredictability of some results, the reaction of society and the state machinery, "inertia" of the public conscience, etc. However this does not prevent the integration of such courses as "Russian history", "History of Economics", "History of economic doctrines" on similar topics.

Not all of these reforms were economically justified, many actually weakened the state power, and often even progressive reforms were carried out inconsistently with enormous deviations from existing legislation, almost always at the expense of the population. It is necessary to study them objectively and show not only positive or negative results, but also real reasons of their conduct, the circumstances of their implementation in specific historical conditions. The study of past eras economic reforms helps students to gain better understanding of current economic and political situation, to form a clear view of the goals and objectives of the government programme at this stage.

Of course, not only teaching of the “History of the Fatherland” can train future specialists in the financial and economic spheres as full-fledged, erudite, cultural, tolerant personalities. This can be achieved only by using the entire arsenal of humanitarian, socio-economic and natural science disciplines, such as Philosophy, Psychology, Sociology, Political Science, Cultural Studies, and others, which are taught at economic institutions of higher education and in St. Petersburg State Economic University and its Novgorod branch in particular.




Bibliographic reference

Vasiliev Y.A., Gubanova A.V. THE TASKS OF TEACHING NATIONAL HISTORY IN THE MODERN ECONOMIC UNIVERSITY. International Journal Of Applied And Fundamental Research. – 2014. – № 2 –
URL: www.science-sd.com/457-24621 (28.01.2020).