Religious radicalization among Central Asian migrants to Russia have raised particular attention in connection with the active recruitment by the “Islamic State” of many people from the region, as well as their participation in a series of terrorist attacks in Turkey. Many experts have wondered whether Central Asian migration to Russia creates fertile ground for spreading the most extreme forms of religion. The breakdown of social structures and customary practices, social isolation, and the negative attitude of the local community to migration feed–as several experts have asserted–the radicalization process. In this presentation, Sergey Abashin, using contemporary sociological and anthropological studies, will analyze the main features of migration from Central Asia to Russia, its structure, dynamics, the legal status and living conditions of migrant workers, and their main strategies and perspectives about their future. He will address the place of religion in migrants’ identity and practices, the types of religiosity and the potentially increasing radicalization.
Sergey Abashin is doctor in history and professor at the European University in Saint-Petersburg. He has authored two monographs, Nationalism in Central Asia: In search of Identity (2007) and The Soviet Kishlak: Between Colonialism and Modernization (2015).
This event will be held in Russian with English translation, and is part of the CERIA Initiative, generously funded by the Henry Luce Foundation.