The “End of Times” and the Antichrist’s Arrival: The Orthodox Dogmas and Prophecies in the National-Patriotic Media in Post-Soviet Russia


A return of the Orthodox religion and a renaissance of the Russian Orthodox Church gave a way for politically active movements of Orthodox fundamentalists and monarchists. They were obsessed with the idea of the “end of time” and argued that the Antichrist was at the door. The article focuses on several national-patriotic newspapers and their interest to Orthodox prophecies about the end of time, which can be traced from the turn of the 1990s. It is examined who exactly, in what way and for what goals developed and discussed eschatological ideas. The major themes, rhetorical means and key words are scrutinized, which helped consumers to disclose the “enemies of Russia” and to reveal their “perfidious plans” and “harmful actions” aimed at the destruction of Russia and its people. A relationship between this ideology and theological teaching of the end of time is analyzed.

Author Biography

Victor A. Shnirelman, Institute of Ethnology and Anthropology, Russian Academy of Sciences, Moscow, Russia

Victor A. Shnirelman is a Principal Research Fellow at the Institute of Ethnology and Anthropology, Russian Academy of Sciences (Moscow, Russia). His main research interests: ethnicity and nationalism, ethnic conflicts, politics of the past, social memory, representation of history in school textbooks, racism and xenophobia, neo-paganism, and eschatology. He is the author of over 500 publications including more than 30 books. He has been granted fellowships in the USA, UK, Canada, Czech Republic, Italy, Israel, Austria, Finland, Germany, and Japan. The major books are: Koleno Danovo: eskhatologia i anti-Semitism v sovremennoy Rossii [The tribe of Dan: eschatology and anti-Semitism in contemporary Russia]. Moscow: Biblical-Theological Institute, 2017 (in Russ.); Ariysky mif v sovremennom mire [The Aryan Myth in the Contemporary World], in 2 vols. Moscow: NLO, 2015 (in Russ.); “Porog tolerantnosti”: ideologia i praktika novogo rasizma (A threshold of tolerance: ideology and practice of new racism), in 2 vols. Moscow: NLO, 2011 (in Russ.); The Myth of the Khazars. Intellectual Antisemitism in Russia, 1970s–1990s. Jerusalem: The Vidal Sassoon International Center for the Study of Antisemitism, Hebrew University, 2002; “The Value of the Past. Myths, Identity and Politics in Transcaucasia.” Osaka: National Museum of Ethnology (Senri Ethnological Studies, no. 57), 2001; “Who gets the past? Competition for Ancestors among non-Russian Intellectuals in Russia.” Washington, Baltimore, London: Woodrow Wilson Center Press and the Johns Hopkins University Press, 1996.


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How to Cite
Shnirelman, V. (2021). The “End of Times” and the Antichrist’s Arrival: The Orthodox Dogmas and Prophecies in the National-Patriotic Media in Post-Soviet Russia. Changing Societies & Personalities, 5(2), 233–251. doi:10.15826/csp.2021.5.2.131