Language rights of national minorities in the Russian education system

Available in Russian

Available for free

Author: Mikhail Peterburgsky

DOI: 10.21128/1812-7126-2019-1-79-91

Keywords: discrimination; education system; ethnic (national) minority; language rights


The problem of realizing the language rights of national minorities, enshrining them in legislation, and establishing measures for their provision and protection are of particular interest. This is due to the fact that the vitality of the languages of national minorities is a key issue for the preservation of the ethnic and cultural diversity of the state. With the derogation of language rights and guarantees, small languages are supplanted by the majority language (as a rule, the state language). The speakers of these languages either gradually withdraw from participation in the public life of the state, or are assimilated with the titular nation, losing their ethno-cultural identity. According to the author, the educational sphere is a life-giving environment for the normal functioning and development of languages. The relevance of the article is driven by recent changes in the Russian legislation on education, which proclaimed the non-obligation to study national languages in national subjects of the Russian Federation. “Turning off” languages from the educational plan will inevitably lead to their extinction, which, in the conditions of the tendency of gradual loss of many national languages of Russia and reduced interest in them among young representatives of national minorities, leads to ethno-cultural unification, which is inconsistent with the meaning of leading international documents. An attempt is made to analyze international and national legislation in terms of the norms on language, the question of language status is also raised. The current problems of teaching national languages in Russia are analyzed. The author concludes that Russian legislation regarding the norms on language requires a number of serious corrections and suggests ways to solve the educational issue in the context of the preservation of minority languages. Nevertheless, it becomes obvious that not all languages can get equal distribution due to the linguistic features of a number of languages. Languages whose features do not allow them to be included in full use in the public sector should be subject to enhanced protection in a socio-cultural focus.

About the author: Mikhail Peterburgsky – Ph.D. student, Faculty of Law, Higher School of Economics, Moscow, Russia.

Citation: Peterburgsky M. (2019) Yazykovyye prava natsional'nykh men'shinstv v sisteme rossiyskogo obrazovaniya [Language rights of national minorities in the Russian education system]. Sravnitel'noe konstitutsionnoe obozrenie, vol.28, no.1, pp.79–91. (In Russian).


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