Sergey A. Aghajanyan
The article analyses one of the most striking realities of a human – the embodiments of foolishness in the works by Hovh. Tumanyan based on cultural approach.

For the accomplishment of the study in the first part of the article (“His Greatness Foolishness”) the philosophical comments on foolishness, its peculiar features both as mentality and as reality of human behaviour are represented in general features. The article differentiates the expressions of individual and mass (crowdy) foolishness and involuntary and conscious (conformity) ones. As a result of all these, the characteristics of foolishness as a type of mind below the average level of coexistence and the peculiarities of fool’s behaviour are specified.

In the second part (“Stupidity as Boomerang”) the stories and tales by Hovh. Tumanyan presenting the individual foolishness are analysed. In the expression of this version of the phenomenon of foolishness Hovh. Tumanyan with amazingly anthropological preciseness presented the following realities: the fool doesn’t know that he is fool, the fool is unable to absorb even the least experimental coexisting knowledge, individual smart ones always win individual fools, the fool is characterised by insurmountable foolishness due to which he is unable of reflection, rationalises his mistake, blames the others and so on.

In the third part of the article (“Foolishness as a Disaster of Coexistence”) the works of the author that reveal the mass expression of foolishness and its effects are analysed. In these works Hovh. Tumanyan emphasises some realities typical for foolishness: psychosis of chain reaction or infectious influence, replacement of imaginative-virtual and vital realities, foolishness that neglects repeated life experience and borderlines with insanity, intuitive or calculated slavery and behaviour. For these and other reasons the masses realises with determination the foolishness of even criminal coexistence.

Through all these Hovh. Tumanyan underlines the most important precondition of expressing the foolishness. It becomes obvious both in its individual and mass versions when an individual or the coexistence tries to solve any mental problem.

All the analysed tales and stories are characterised by the high poetic level of fictional depiction typical for Tumanyan where satire stands apart. And here is seen the orientation and attitude of the author towards his presented heroes and realities: this very thing is analysed in the fourth part of the article (“The Author’s Orientation”). The careful study of foolishness in Tumanyan’s embodiments shows that by humouring, even principally rejecting the fools and foolishness the author never vaunts the ones who have that flaw which is the expression of his humanistic and philosophical essence.

The last part of the study – “Conclusions” summarises the results of the analysis.


Perspectives of Social Stratification and Reproduction of Cultural Capital Forms: Problems of the past 20 years


Aghasi Z. Tadevosyan

The social structure of the population of Yerevan significantly changed in the years of independence. Owing to the reforms of the 1990’s main parts of the population of Yerevan unexpectedly fell in to poverty. Poverty influenced urban processes in a very negative way. The range and diversity of people’s speres of activity decreased critically. As a result, the main part of the population of the city was alienated from the Hansition processes. Poverty especially limited their opportunities of participation and investment in the exchange processes and the transformation of their capacities into various forms of financial, cultural and social capital. That influenced the reproduction of the cultural capital of vulnerable strata negatively, decreasing their chances to overcome poverty and threatening with the transformation of poverty into a self-reproductive phenomenon. The policy of social transfers is not sufficient for the prevention of such a perspective. First of all, investments are needed for cultural capital’s quality improvement and its dynamic reproduction.


Part 2: The Everyday Life and Cultural Transitions in the Post-Independence Period


Aghasi Z. Tadevosyan

In the Post-Soviet period everyday life in Yerevan changed entirely. The end of the total control of the people’s working and free time by the Soviet regime gave them a chance to manage their personal time. Emancipation of personal time provided people with an opportunity to create new forms and spheres of daily activity. Small business and trade – a largely novel form of communication for a post-soviet city – appeared, suggesting a rather new picture of the city. For some period petty dealers’ vision of a street – as a space for trade – became a principal characteristic feature of the city’s everyday life, influencing the processes of time and space organization. The traders’ voices became decisive. This stratum soon realized its vision and changed the cultural landscape of the city. The struggle for the right to the city was another process influencing the newly shaping development of everyday life of the city. The question: “Who does the right to realize his/her visions of the city belong to?” became crucial. In the clashes between interests of small traders, major business and crime, major business held the victory. These processes still continue. New social groups, which look at the city from ecological, aesthetical and other perspectives now struggle for their right to the city and to change the cultural forms of Yerevan according to their own vision.



Part 1: The transformations of the Social Culture in the Soviet and Post-Soviet Yerevan

Aghasi Z. Tadevosyan
As the capital city of the Soviet republic, Yerevan has acquired and performed some important functions. Among the imperative functions, the first was the transformation of the Armenian national culture to the Soviet Armenian one, the second was the integration of the Armenians with the Soviet Union, and the third, blocking the western bits and pieces by the Soviet Armenian national culture. In accomplishment of especially the latter task, an active role was given to close male groups in the neighborhoods. Due to the formation of open youth and intellectual social groups in the center of Yerevan, this uni-dimensional feature of urban culture was partially broken in 1970-1980s. Today, the realization of new functions of Yerevan is incomplete and the social culture of the post-soviet period is searching for and changing the discourses, related to the spatial organization of the city. Although this process is resisted by the close groups of nowadays, especially some oligarchic groups, who deem the public space of the city as an exclusively business environment, it steadily progresses due to the new open youth environments.