February 24, 2022 is a date that divided the lives of millions of people into before and after. Millions of Ukrainians became refugees, hundreds of thousands of Russians were forced to leave the country, thousands of people became political prisoners. Schools and universities have been invaded by Z-ideology. This gave rise to a new Russian reality, which more than 75 sociologists, historians, demographers and economists studying Russian society tried to comprehend.
How does war become routine, heroic and ordinary? Do you need to look at photographs of hostages every day? Where is the line between adapting to war and rejecting conflict? These questions were discussed by the participants in the discussion “Normalization of Evil” - urban geographer Aleksey Novikov, visiting researcher at Ariel University Viktor Vakhshtain and communication specialist Grigory Ogibin.
In Togliatti, in the local special economic zone (SEZ), they can build another plant for the assembly of Iranian combat drones. There is no official information about this and in words the plans are purely peaceful. The EFKO group of companies, the founder of enterprises producing drones in Tolyatti, pretends that it has nothing to do with the plant. T-invariant looks at how this big business moved from projects with GM and Volkswagen to assembling deadly machines for the war in Ukraine.
T-invariant publish open letter by Alexander Kabanov, Mescal S. Ferguson Distinguished Professor, Director, Center for Nanotechnology in Drug Delivery Chapel Hill, UNC. He writes: "The terrorist attack on Israel on October 7, 2023, shocked me deeply. I was also disappointed by the statement issued by the UNC Chapel Hill Faculty, Graduate Students, and Staff Regarding Justice in Palestine, which said, among other things, “…We believe that an understanding of such loss must be situated within the historical and political context of ongoing colonial oppression.” On November 3, 2023, I sent a brief note to about 40 UNC faculty members who had signed this statement by then..."
In Chicago, at the annual conference of the Russian-speaking American Scientific Association (RASA), sociologists who have recently been living in the United States chose for their presentations topics that can now hardly be discussed publicly while in Russia. Sergey Erofeev (Rutgers University)presented a brief overview of the most interesting presentations for T-invariant.
The number of Israelis abducted during the terrorist attack on October 7, whose identities have been identified, has reached 210 people. However, it is not yet known how many people remain alive and how many are killed. In southern Israel, where fighting is still ongoing, small volunteer groups were searching for missing people. Zoologist Alexandra Panyutina worked in one of them. At the request of T-invariant, Alexandra tried to reconstruct the picture of the tragedy that occurred.
How do the events of October, 7 differ from the previous Israeli-Palestinian conflicts? Why was Israel unprepared for the invasion? What could happen to the hostages? A new configuration of the relations between Palestine and Israel emerges, says Dmitry Mariasis, candidate of economic sciences, specialist on the Middle East, former head of the department of the Israel study and Jewish communities at the Institute of Oriental Studies of the Russian Academy of Sciences.
Has Yevgeny Prigozhin’s march on Moscow broken the «negative equilibrium» Russia has been stuck in for the last twenty years? Vladimir Gelman, political scientist, professor at the University of Helsinki, and author of the book on «bad governance» in contemporary Russia, analyzes the consequences of the failed mutiny and possible alternative scenarios.
How science helps resist the archaic, explains Eugene Koonin, Senior Investigator at the National Center for Biotechnology Information at the U.S. National Institutes of Health.
How do random variability, heredity, and selection work in cultural evolution? Wars as fluctuations in cultural evolution, lessons from Franklin's missing expedition, hierarchy of prestige, copying of skills, level of trust and natural selection of ideas, competitive environments without wars — Alexander Markov talks about all this in episode 4 of the podcast «Invasion».
Is modern war in terms of cultural evolution the norm or the terrible exception? Was Steven Pinker wrong when he wrote his book «The Best in Us: Why There's Less Violence in the World»? Aleksandr Markov, doctor of biological sciences, argues in episode 3 of Olga Orlova's podcast «Invasion. Science in a Time of War.»
Philologist Boris Gasparov, professor at Columbia University in New York spoke in an interview with T-invariant about his new book, the impossibility of doing Russian cultural history today, and why the current emigration of intellectuals is more like the German emigration of the 1930s than the «philosophical steamer.»
The war caused the largest and fastest «brain drain» from Russia since the early 1990s. What is the peculiarity of this wave? T-invariant launches a series of videos titled «Philosophical Scooter». Первый выпуск: «Brain Drain: How Scientists Go to Israel». We discuss with Yakov Krasik, Professor, Department of Physics, Professor, Department of Physics, The Technion – Israel Institute of Technology.
The Prosecutor General's Office of the Russian Federation announced that the Free University had been given the status of an undesirable organization. «Our censors and persecutors are a little too late,» believes Kirill Martynov, co-founder of the Free University. He even sees some pluses in the new status.
The Board of Directors of RASA (Russian American Science Association) expresses full and unconditional support to a valued member of our association Professor Konstantin Sonin of the University of Chicago, in connection with a recent reports that a criminal case has been opened against him in Russia on suspicion of publicly disseminating of allegedly «false information about the use of the Russian Armed Forces».
What are the ideological, historical, mythological, and psychological reasons for the Russian invasion of Ukraine. We talk about this in a podcast interview with the author of the book The End of the Russian World? On the Ideological Foundations of Russian Aggression, Polish diplomat and publicist Piotr Skwieczynski.
His ideal was a quiet university job, but life made him a "merchant of death." Georgy Kistyakowsky's name does not appear in a history textbook. But it was his knowledge that helped turn the tide of World War II and influenced the policies of one of the two superpowers. Though it wasn't even his homeland.
An international boycott of scientists for their government's war? Even anti-war-minded people are divided over such measures. Many do not risk speaking out about it. So in addition to the scientists' answers, we asked questions to the artificial intelligence. At least it doesn't have emotions to suppress.
Ukrainian scientists have appealed to the international community to boycott their Russian colleagues. However, such a boycott conflicts with a number of important legal and ethical principles, and in practical terms may do more harm than good in countering Russian aggression.
Despite the energy crisis, the European Union is not abandoning its Green Deal and is increasing efforts to develop environmentally friendly, cheap and non-dependent on Russian hydrocarbons energy. Russia's foreign policy has played a significant role in this process.
How Russian mathematics lost to the war. Is there any chance, in the conditions of external isolation, to preserve a living system of mathematical knowledge in Russia through international solidarity, personal connections, and secret online teaching?
T-invariant survey: how the war affected Russian science and scientists themselves. Historical rhymes with the scientific emigration of the 1920s, relations with Ukrainian colleagues, isolation of Russian universities, faint hopes and gloomy predictions.
The T-invariant is a media with the mission to constantly remind us of timeless civilizational invariants, and to unite the community of people who hold them as living values.