This article was written by the well-known activist of the Wiedergeburt society Boris Davydovich Peters in 1994, but today it remains relevant and very informative. The scientific approach proposed in the article to the study of the development of the ethnos of Russian Germans makes it possible to analyze, generalize and predict the past, present and future of the Russian Germans as a people.

Any directly observed ethnos is in one or another phase of ethnogenesis. Knowing in which phase of ethnogenesis is the given ethnos, one can orientate in a complex system of combining different ethnic groups and predict its future in the system of ethnoses into which this ethnos enters.
1. Germans from all over the world make up the German superethnos. They now live in 47 countries (15 + 32) and have more than 100 million people.
German superethnos is divided into a number of ethnic groups, one of which is the people of Russian Germans, numbering today at least 7 million people / 2 + 1.2 + 4-5 /, now living in 25 countries and dividing in turn into a number of sub-ethnoses and consortia.
The structure of any ethnos is always more or less complicated, but it is the complexity that provides the ethnos with stability and the ability to experience all the upheavals and trials.
The Russian German people have always had a complex ethnic structure and still has it.
In the past, this was a division into the Germans of the Volga region, Ukrainian / and earlier Black Sea / Germans, Volhynian, urban, Caucasian, Crimean, Orenburg, Siberian Germans. Now these old divisions have significantly blurred, but there have appeared divisions in the country of residence: Kazakh, Argentine, etc.
In addition, there are such consortia in the Russian German people as laborers, special settlers - large groups of people united by a common historical destiny, as well as repatriates and virgin lands, today a new consortium - settlers, residents of compact, often containerized , settlements of the Volga region and Ukraine.
The ethnic group of Russian Germans also has a significant class division. In addition to the traditional, widespread peasant class, the ethnos of Russian Germans have large groups of workers: the miners of Karaganda and Kuzbass, construction workers and workers in the building materials industry, there are technical and creative intelligentsia, teachers and doctors, professional military / army, navy, MVD and of the militia.
2. Ethnology considers language to be an important factor for an ethnos, but not a determinant.
There are many bilingual and three language ethnoses and, conversely, different ethnic groups speaking the same language.
The ethnos of the Russian Germans were initially bilingual - a significant part of it - the Mennonites - spoke to the platdeadach. Today, the ethnic group of Russian Germans uses six languages: German, Platdeodach, Russian, English, Spanish, Portuguese.
This does not prevent Russian Germans from considering themselves as belonging to the same ethnic group.
3. Many scientists participated in the creation and development of the science of ethnology. Contributed to VI. Vernadsky, S.M. Shirokogorov, V. Anuchin, V. Kozlov, M.I. Artamonov, Yu.V. Bromley, K.P. Ivanov, L.S. Berg, Yu.K. Efremov.
The greatest contribution to the development of ethnology was made by the Russian scientist Lev Nikolayevich Gumilev, who established the patterns of the emergence, development and disappearance of ethnic groups.
According to these laws of ethnogenesis has 6-7 main phases lasting up to 300 years each, the total length of them, if there is no significant interference from the outside, is about 1200 years old.
Phase ethnogeny - passionarnyj lift, consisting of two periods: the first incubation / hidden / period and the second period explicit.
Within this phase, during the transition from the first / hidden / period to the second, the formation of the ethnic system takes place.
The reason and the beginning of the formation of a new ethnic system are either a passionate push - a micromutation that causes the emergence of a passionary feature in the population and leads to the emergence of new ethnic systems in certain regions (usually several simultaneously) or genetic "drift" - the phenomenon of the dissipation of a passionary attribute by accidental ties that are common during the war, or the separation from an ethnic group of people with a change in their place of residence.
Over time, these people develop a new stereotype of behavior and lose touch with the metropolis. Sometimes these groups perish, but often, mixing with aborigines or other immigrants, they form independent ethnic groups. Examples: Americans of Anglo-Saxon origin, Creoles, Boers, Sikhs, Buryats, Russian Germans.
4. The resettlement of foreign colonists to Russia began in 1763 and lasted until 1842, some cases of resettlement were until 1862.
Thus, the first period, a hidden incubation period, lasted a hundred years for the ethnic group of Russian Germans.
This period in ethnology is called hidden, because neither by contemporaries, nor in historical documents, the ongoing process is perceived and fixed as the process of the emergence of a new ethnos.
The latent incubation period passes into the second explicit period from the moment of self-determination of the ethnos as such, from the time of acquiring a stable awareness of its identity.
We still have to find in the archives the first document, which fixed the self-names of our two first large co-ethnos, "Volgadoich" and "Schwarzmerdeutsche."
Usually in the new ethnos the first generation can not yet get used to its own identity, but in the second or third generation, the members of the ethnos already state their difference from their ancestors.
By 1872, by the time of the first mass departure of Russian Germans from Russia, the Russian German ethnos was already fully formed.
5. The true developmental areas of the new ethnoses are the territories of a combination of two or more landscapes.
The Volga region - a combination of steppe, river valleys and hilly right-bank forest-steppe, with a predominance of the steppe area.
The Black Sea region is a combination of steppe, river valleys and the sea coast, also with a predominance of the steppe area.
In both areas of our ethnos, the main element of the landscape was the steppe. And the desire to live in the steppe landscape was one of the signs of the ethnic group of the Russian Germans.
This was evident even with the creation of numerous subsidiary colonies in Russia: they were created mainly in the steppes of the Crimea, Orenburg, Northern Kazakhstan, in the Kulunda and Baraba Steppes.
This affected the migration to the American continent: they settled in the steppes of Canada, the USA, Argentina.
The same caused after the removal of Russian Germans from the special, the transfer of many of them from the forest north to the Kazakhstan and Altai virgin steppes and even to the desert steppes of the south of Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.
6. Settlers, mostly in the steppe regions of Russia, the settlers, despite belonging to different nationalities and to four different, religious denominations, within one century formed into a single people with all the basic signs of a stable ethnos.
The main of these signs is a sense of belonging to one's ethnic group. This feeling is steadily manifested both by the Russian Germans living on the territory of the former USSR and by the descendants of the Volga Germans and the Black Sea Germans who left Russia 100-120 years ago. Today, this is becoming more and more evident among Russian Germans who have come to Germany.
At the last census of the USSR, more than 2 million Russian Germans declared their belonging to their people.
The majority of Russian Germans actively manifested their sense of nationality when the movement for the rehabilitation and restoration of the statehood of the Russian Germans began, having created, in 1.5 years, from the first Wiedergeburt Conference in March 1989 to the third Wiedergeburt Conference in August 1990, its the national organization - the society "Wiedergeburt" throughout the territory of the USSR.
The same feeling was manifested in the fact that the absolute majority of Russian Germans, realizing that the leaders of the USSR and Russia are not going to restore their rights, decided to leave the country and persistently implemented this decision.
This is convincingly confirmed by the desire of all Russian Germans living in the eastern republics of the CIS to leave Germany, if not their historical homeland, or Russia to their immediate homeland.
It is surprising the sense of belonging to the Russian German ethnos descendants who left the American continent 100-120 years ago, Russian Germans. In all countries only they from descendants of various Germans have their organizations. They retain their sense of belonging to the Russian German ethnos, despite the fact that they live on the American continent more than their ancestors lived in Russia.
The descendants of Germans from other countries on the American continent in the majority lost such a sense of belonging to the German ethnos.
7. The first period of the phase of the passionary rise of the ethnic group of the Russian Germans passed into the second approximately 130 years ago, in the 60s of the Х1Х century. In general, the phase of passionary recovery lasts for our ethnos 230 years. Until the end of the phase of passionary recovery and the transition to the phase of the active 70 years. Then there will be up to 300 years of the highest phase of the development of the ethnos, that is, before the phase of breakdown, another 370 years of vigorous progressive development.
If the first hundred years of the Russian German ethnos was with the surrounding ethnic groups in a symbiotic state - the coexistence of two or more ethnic groups in one region, when each occupies its ecological niche and these ethnoses can coexist for centuries, then since the 1970s, some actions of the Russian government and especially the actions of the leadership of the USSR in the 30s - 40s led to the transformation of symbiosis into an ethnic chimera - the coexistence of two or more alien superethnic ethnoses in one ecological niche, leading to the death of one of or all of the members of the ethnic chimera.
The transformation of symbiosis into a chimera led to the distortion and delay of the natural process of ethnogenesis of Russian Germans, but did not stop it, led to the dispersion of the ethnos across 25 countries, but did not destroy the ethnos itself.
Being a young, highly passionate ethnos, the Russian German people, despite numerous losses, persistently and rapidly growing numerically, developed their culture and especially the productive forces.
About 27,000 people arrived in the first stream of immigrants, half of whom died out in the first 15 years. In 100 years, about 100,000 people from various countries of Germany, from Switzerland, Poland, Denmark, Sweden, Alsace moved to Russia.
For the first 150 years, the number of ethnic groups has increased 20 times. According to the 1914 census of Germans in Russia there were 1.7 million people and 300 thousand Russian Germans left by this time for the American continent.
Despite the losses in the l-th world and civil wars, the repression of the 20-30s, the mass death of the male part of the ethnos in the labor army, the strength of the ethnic group quickly recovered and grew. I am sure that, despite the massive departure from the CIS, the number of Russian Germans in Russia is not decreasing now.
The root of this phenomenon is not the multiplicity of our families. The numerous families themselves are a consequence of the fact that the Russian German people are a young ethnos with a high passionary tension.
3a 230 years, the ethnic group of Russian Germans grew 700-800 times!
8. Any new ethnos, having entered the second period of its first phase of ethnogenesis, needs to expand its habitat.
Many young ethnoses achieve this by militant aggression against their neighbors. In the case of Russian Germans, the expansion of the range of habitats followed a different path.
Russian Germans as a people have never fought anybody. On the contrary, they differ in their ability to live peacefully with any other people with whom they have to live.
The expansion of the area of ​​the Russian German ethnos was rapid, in the 19th century, even very quickly, but exclusively by peaceful means, or by getting empty areas from the state, or by buying new plots of land.
9. No one has yet done a full analysis, did not write a history of the development of the productive forces of the Russian German people. So far, only certain facts of this history are known: the transformation of huge steppe spaces into fertile fields, the development of commodity grain farming, the introduction of an iron advanced plow, many agricultural machines, the construction of huge steam mills, the production of sarpine, vegetable oils, mustard, sheep breeding, breeding of highly productive red steppe breed of cows, development of a unique system for growing cereals in dry steppes, taken out by our ancestors from the Volga to Canada and came back and then in the Soviet Union during the development of virgin land under the name of the Canadian system.
10. As a young developing ethnos, the people of Russian Germans have a great historical perspective of their preservation and rapid development.
From the point of view of the science of ethnology, in order to realize this perspective, the ethnos of Russian Germans need to return from the ethnic chimera to a state of symbiosis with surrounding ethnoses, that is, live compactly on their territory and with their own administration.
The real way to this is only one: resettlement in the Volga region, mainly in compact settlements, the restoration of its local government and its statehood.
11. Basic concepts and terms of ethnology.
1. Ethnology is a geographical science that studies the formation of the Earth's ethnosphere as a result of the processes of ethnogenesis in the historical epoch.
2. Ethnogenesis is the whole process from the moment of emergence to the disappearance of the ethnic system under the influence of the entropic process of loss of passionarity.
3. Ethnos - naturally formed on the basis of the original stereotype of behavior, the collective of people, existing as an energy system / structure, which opposes itself to all other similar collectives, proceeding from the sense of complementarity.
4. Place of development or homeland of the ethnos - a unique combination of elements of the landscape, where the ethnos first emerged as a system.
5. Mosaic ethnos - the heterogeneity of the internal structure, necessary to maintain ethnic unity.
6. Consortium - a group of people united often ephemeral, one historical destiny for a short time.
7. Passionarity as a characteristic of behavior - the effect of excess biochemical energy of living matter, generating sacrifice for the sake of an illusory goal.
8. Passionarity as energy - excess biochemical energy of living matter, inverse to the vector of the instinct of self-preservation and determining the ability to over-stress.
B.D. Peters
October 17, 1994 
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