Tuesday, March 15, 2022

Age and Media Use Remain Strongest Predictors of Levels of Xenophobia in Russia, Levada Center Says

Paul Goble

            Staunton, Mar. 11 – Among Russians, the age cohort to which they belong and the media they prefer remain the strongest predictors of how much nationalism and xenophobia they feel, according to a new Levada Center poll released today (levada.ru/2022/03/11/ksenofobiya-i-natsionalizm-v-gosudarstvennoj-vlasti/).

            Younger Russians and those who rely on the Internet for news and information are less xenophobic and nationalistic than older age groups and those who rely on state-controlled radio and television, factors that are related because age and patterns of media use are mutually re-enforcing.

            For the population as a whole, the Levada Center reports, there has been little change in the responses of Russians to the question as to whether a non-Russian can be “a real patriot of Russia.” Over that period, about 27 percent of the samples have said yes while 69 percent have said no.

            People aged 18 to 24 and 40 to 54 are slightly more likely to say no than are other cohorts, while those who rely on telegram channels are much more likely to reject that idea than those who rely on state radio and television which communicates the views preferred by the Kremlin.

            The polling agency also asked whether Russians believe that ethnic Russians should have advantages as far as government employment is concerned. Currently, 36 percent of them say that they should, while 56 percent say they should not. Compared with August 2018, those saying yes have declined by 10 percent, while those saying no have increased by 12.

            But again, younger people and those who rely on the Internet rather than state media are more opposed to this idea than are members of older age groups and those who rely on government media.


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