How did I become a sociologist?

In 1995, I graduated with honors from the Moscow State University of Culture and Arts (MGUKI) and received a diploma as a theater director. The childhood dream came true, I’m an aspiring actress, a graduate director, but the future was seen as if in a fog, family life was not at all combined with work in the theater (“nest of depravity and shame”), late rehearsals, performances, scenes that are not always ideal and approved by the family . Suddenly appeared, thanks to D.Sociol., Prof. Tamara Zavenovna (for which I am extremely grateful to her) is a unique opportunity to enter the Master’s program of the Republican Center for Humanitarian Education (currently the State Academic University for the Humanities) on the basis of the Institute of Sociology of the Russian Academy of Sciences. There was my acquaintance with the outstanding scientist Tamara Moiseevna Dridze. In consequence she became my scientific mum, the head of my master’s degree, and then my Ph.D. thesis.

An introductory interview was to be held, almost the next day, with a “clean” head and bright thoughts, I went to the “realm” of Russian sociology – the IS of the Russian Academy of Sciences. Honestly, I knew only two sociologists Karma Marx and Tamara Moiseevna Dridze, who at that time agreed to become my leader. Personally, with each entrant, Professor VA spoke. Yadov, I was carried away by the conversation and it seemed to me that I had successfully coped, but Vladimir Alexandrovich made a verdict: “She does not know anything,” to the question of deputy. Dean “Well, what do not we take?”, answered: “No, why, we take, she’s smart.” I will never forget that moment, it was a huge credit of trust and the unique chance that was given to me by fate in the person of an outstanding Russian sociologist. And then, all the time I tried to justify his trust, being a student, receiving from his hands the Master’s diploma with honors, and then working as a junior research assistant of the Russian Academy of Sciences and a teacher of the State Agrarian University.

The first set was experimental and unique in its essence, it coincided with the published series of author’s works prepared within the framework of the program “Renewal of Humanitarian Education in Russia”, in addition Vladimir Yadov, the dean of the sociology faculty, was encouraged by the opportunity to invite leading experts in their fields reading of profile lectures.

I think that there was no other precedent when on such a scientific sociological site there worked such a number of “stars of the first magnitude”. I was shocked, I experienced a cultural shock from the opportunity to communicate with unique specialists, outstanding scientists who gave us lectures: V.A. Yadov – the basis of sociology, Yu.N. Davydov – an introduction to the history of sociology, A.B. Hoffman is a French sociological thought, N.E. Pokrovsky – American sociology, A.F. Filippov – German, Z.T. Golenkova – n sociology of the nineteenth century, LM. Drobizheva – ethnic sociology, L.G. Ionin – sociology of culture, M.F. Chernysh is a Marxist theory, O.M. Maslova – methodology and methods of sociological research, G.G. Tatarova – data analysis, Yu.N. Tolstova is a measurement in sociology, M.S. Kosolapov – selective methods, G.S. Batygin conducted a methodological seminar, in addition, we read IF. Devyatko, V.V. Semenova, E.Yu. Christmas, V.V. Shcherbina and other teachers. I set them myself as an example, I tried to be like them.

Children’s ecstasy from the academic atmosphere, from the reign of democracy, from the abundance of scientific thought, was replaced by study weekdays, I enthusiastically studied the works of the classics of sociology, did not miss a single lesson, courageously wrote independent and coursework, mastered mathematical methods of data analysis. There could be no even thoughts about using essay writing service, although, to admit honestly, some of my fellow students were so busy. Words: community, quasi- group, social institutions, movements, processes, subculture, values, status, role, inequality, latent functions, deviation, one-dimensional unfolding and multidimensional scaling, finally filled with certain meanings for me.

I was reading Per Monson’s “The boat on the avenues of the park” and Peter Berger’s “Introduction to Sociology”, recommended by VA. Yadovym. Lectures of Vladimir Alexandrovich I still remember, I keep notes, books with his autographs, notes with kind words. I consider him my scientific father. A strong influence on my becoming, as a professional sociologist, was provided by prof. NOT. Pokrovsky and prof. A.V. Tikhonov, prof. Yanitsky ON, I am grateful to them for scientific advice, support and friendly understanding. Finally, my becoming as a sociologist took place, when, under the guidance of Yevgeny Mikhailovich Akimkin, I visited an expedition study and fully immersed myself in empirical, teamwork, collected my first array of in-depth expert interviews, tried myself as an analyst.

I believe that life in science is no less interesting, and in some ways more fascinating of life in art, and the question: “Do I regret that the theatrical professional career did not take shape”, I answer: “I am happy that I had the opportunity to do science”. There are no backstage and bright ramps, loud ovations, but there are quiet arguments, intellectual conversations, issues of new books and magazines, congresses and conferences, there are endless “fields” (prof. Slang – field studies) and the desire to know the truth.

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