The Problems of Missionary Work in the North Caucasus in the Context of Educational Policy of Russia (XIX Century)

Tyumen State University Herald. Humanities Research. Humanitates


2016, Vol. 2. №3

The Problems of Missionary Work in the North Caucasus in the Context of Educational Policy of Russia (XIX Century)

About the author:

Nadezhda O. Bleikh, Dr. Sci. (Hist.), Professor, Department of Social Work, Faculty of Sociology and Social Work, North Ossetian State University named after Kosta Levanovich Khetagurov (Vladikavkaz);


The article deals with the problems of missionary work in the North Caucasus in the sphere of educational policy of Russia in the XIX century on the basis of archival and documentary materials. The current work involves historical-comparative, structural, and abstract-logical methods of research. Each of them obtains its own scope and has played an important role in the processing, systematization, and generalization of the research material.

The author proves that the educational policy was focused on the involvement of highlanders in the capitalist relations and bringing them to the Russian culture through missionary organizations, such as “The Society for the Recovery of Christianity in the Caucasus” and individual leaders from the highlanders themselves (Gios Baratashvili, Daniel Chokadze, and others). The preachers did not only preach the word of God to the highlanders, but also made a contribution to the education of the non-Russian peoples, which was an important factor in their cultural development. In the meantime, they contributed to the development of writing for the highlanders ethnic groups and provided them with schools, even with the ones of the parochial order.

The result of the study is the understanding of the fact that the school policy of the Russian Empire on its borderlands was controversial; it was carried out without the consideration for the peculiarities of the national mentality; it ignored the role of the parent languages, customs, and the traditions of the highlanders in the learning process. However, despite all this, there has been progress in the formation of the highlanders. They stood in the way of his spiritual revival, and Evangelical organizations have played a major role in consolidating the Russian-Caucasian relations and strengthened the worldview of the Empire in the struggle with Islam through education.

The article concludes that the missionary organizations had not had the special significance for the people of other faiths in terms of Christianization; however, they had objectively created the situation of secular educational institutions occurrence in accordance with the regulations of the Russian requirements and legislative codes of the school, which eventually led to the emergence of educated highlanders in the North Caucasus.


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