Social Distance from Jews in Russia and Ukraine
With the rise of ultranationalist organizations throughout Europe, the issue of attitudes and orientations held toward designated "out-groups" has become a critical concern of anxious observers. In Russia the strength registered by Vladimir Zhirinovskii's ultranationalist Liberal Democratic Party during the parliamentary elections of 1993 has been interpreted as a sign of intolerance among the Russian populace. In fact, the success of candidates associated with the Liberal Democratic Party was not only based upon appeals to strengthen the Russian nation against perceived enemies, but also upon promises of a return to price stability and upon Zhirinovskii's anti-establishment, populist program. Nonetheless, Zhirinovskii's success in the 1991 presidential elections (he attracted 7.8% of the electorate) does serve to reaffirm the importance of tracking how attitudes toward groups that have often been targeted as scapegoats in times of social or economic upheaval have evolved in the late Soviet and immediate post-Soviet period. Two major questions concern us here: first, how pervasive among Russians and Ukrainians are perceptions of significant "social distance" between themselves and designated out-groups, most notably the Jewish population; and second, to what extent do these perceptions of distance form part of a cohesive ideology of ultranationalism? Understanding the basis of sentiments toward Jewish populations is particularly important for interpreting the workings of the complex mosaic of the post-Soviet political culture.
Link to article (paywalled), Social Distance from Jews in Russia and Ukraine
Social Distance from Jews in Russia and Ukraine. 1994: 807-828. https://archive.jpr.org.uk/10.2307/2501521