TRAMES 3, 2, 1998

Mati Heidmets. Russian Minority: Dilemmas for Estonia

Tallinn Pedagogical University, Estonia


During the 1990s, an Estonian minority paradigm has been established. In the context of this paradigm, sometimes called silent separation, the historical closed-community model for the predominantly Russian-speaking minority has deepened and seems to persevere. Considering this model as potentially dangerous for the country, especially in a long-run perspective, I am arguing for the need of paradigm shift. The separational paradigm should be replaced by an integrational one. According to the opinion polls, the society is quite ready for such a paradigm shift, the problem is that the political establishment is not yet enough motivated for the next step in an Estonian minority policy.

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