In Frontier We Trust
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frontier; contact zone; religion; faith; sects; tropes; errand into wilderness; exodus; paradise; sacred space; missionaries; missions; transgression

How to Cite

1. Якушенков С. In Frontier We Trust // Journal of Frontier Studies. 2019. № 3. C. 12-59.


The article points out a very important and multifaceted problem of the religious situation on the Frontier. By naming a thematic issue of our journal devoted to the problems of religious beliefs «In Frontier We Trust», the author proves that frontier shapes systems of religious beliefs, but is also changed under their influence. Following a well-known phrase from the U.S. anthem «In God We Trust», the author uses this title to indicate that the Frontier is both a place where people believe in God and the place that determines their faith.

With the help of various methods (comparativistics, typological analysis, semiotic methods) the author shows how Frontier is connected with religious thinking, how it, being an archaic trope, formed the development of various societies. Taking the form of utopia or dystopia, the Frontier forced people to act in a special way. Therefore, different faiths had to change in new spaces, and taking into account the fact that in some cases the frontier is also a territory of free choice, in which the principles of multi-confessionalism are active, this made different religious confessions compete with each other, and undergo constant transformations in the process, if not at the level of basic dogmatic principles, then at the level of external forms, embedded in the new reality – natural, social and cultural. The article shows how, because of the challenges, clerics of different denominations on the Frontier turned out to be frontiersmen not only because of their places of residence, but also in the spirit of vision. They moved along the path of transformation and transgression, while a significant number of believers in the nuclear areas of residence continued to adhere to old traditions. The Frontier changes everything: methods, habitual way of life, social relations, gender stereotypes, etc.
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