The Demand of the “Rigidity Turn” for The Sustainable Development: Contours of the Concept

The Demand of the “Rigidity Turn” for The Sustainable Development: Contours of the Concept

Kravchenko S.A.

Dr. Sci. (Philos). Prof., Head of the Department of Sociology, MGIMO-University; Chief Researcher, Institute of Sociology of FCTAS RAS, Moscow, Russia

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Kravchenko S.A. The Demand of the “Rigidity Turn” for The Sustainable Development: Contours of the Concept. Sotsiologicheskie issledovaniya [Sociological Studies]. 2021. No 10. P. 12-22


There has been considered the process of the complication of challenges to the sustainable development under the conditions of the global complexity and the dominance of nonlinear trends. It is shown that to interpret the dynamically complex realities entailing uncertainties and socio-natural turbulence, the sociological “turns” to the instruments of the natural sciences have been justified, which allow to produce more valid knowledge about hybrid, short-lived, “liquid” phenomena. However, they give insufficient attention to the realities with rigid characteristics, which play a significant role in the reproduction of the sustainable development. In this regard, we propose the contours of the “rigidity turn” concept, which is focused on studying long-lived phenomena that provide existential and ontological security to man, the functionality of society and nature. There are specifically analyzed following basic phenomena of stability and sustainability with an immanent humanistic content: “home”; living labor; “super-self” and archetypes; collective ideas and myths; traditions; ritualism as a predictable way of living; institutionalized routines, collective habitus, “track”; praxis; episteme; theological knowledge and religious beliefs; “bridge”. The conclusion is made that the “rigidity turn”, based on the interdisciplinary humanistic knowledge, does not oppose the “turns” that interpret the dispersions of globo-local socium and socio-natural turbulences, but it offers an extension of the subject matter of studying of the sustainable development in the context of justifying the significance of the long-lived and humanistic factors. The author relies on the achievements of the world sociological thought as well as of Russian sociologists, who have made a significant contribution to the study of cultural, historical and spatial features of the country’s transition to a balanced solution of economic, socio-cultural problems in the context of the optimal co-development of human and natural resources, humanization of scientific and technological innovation, preservation of the functionality of the ecological environment.

global complexity; nonlinearity; sustainable development; “rigidity turn”; existential and ontological security; human capital; humanism


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