The Orthodox Church is the largest religious community in Russia, with more than 80 percent of ethnic Russians self-identifying as Orthodox Christians. The country is home to a significant number of Orthodox churches, but the total number is unknown. Many Orthodox believers do not attend church regularly, with a weekly attendance rate of less than two percent. Still, the Orthodox Church is viewed as an important part of the Russian heritage. In addition to the Orthodox Church, small numbers of other Christian denominations are also present in Russia. Protestants comprise only a small percentage of the population, and Roman Catholics make up between seven and fifteen percent of the country’s population.
There are several distinct climate zones in Russia. The country is made up of both Asian and European regions. While the Asian part of Russia has a smaller population, European Russia is home to larger landmasses and a greater number of people. The Russian Federation is also a federal republic, with 21 republics and 6 “krays,” each covering a different climate. In addition, the country contains 10 autonomous regions and one federal territory.
The Russian statehood survived “Time of Troubles,” which resulted in corrupt Tsars and weak central bureaucracy. During the Muscovite period, Mongol hordes brought Asiatic influences to Russia. And in the modern period, Russia drew upon Western European cultural heritage. Because of these, the Russian language and culture have come to dominate the country and suppress other cultures. The Russian language is the official language of the Russian state, and Russian culture has become the dominant culture in Russia.
In the middle of the twentieth century, the Russian society underwent profound changes. The economy was liberalized, and the patriarchal domination of the family broke down. In the 1920s, abortion was legalized and divorce no longer required a court procedure. The emancipation of women increased the number of workers and the labor market. Girls were encouraged to attend school and pursue careers in the factory or office. In addition, communal nurseries were set up to care for small children. Meanwhile, soviet clubs were formed to promote social life.
The Soviet Union’s largest state-owned enterprises were privatized, resulting in the rise of a wealthy elite. Corruption became rampant in Russia. This led to accusations of collusion with insiders to steal billions of dollars. A member of the Yeltsin government was also accused of conspiring with insiders to swindle the state of billions. Moreover, Yeltsin’s son-in-law became the CEO of the airline Aeroflot.
Russia’s judicial system is based on a civil law system. There are three branches of the Russian judicial system: courts of general jurisdiction, the arbitration court system, and the Constitutional Court. Despite the multi-party system, the Russian government is headed by the president. The prime minister is appointed by the president. In addition, the federal assembly has two chambers, each of which is empowered to pass laws.