Home    Number 4, 2023

Deconstruction of Population Censuses: Comments and Considerations

[Dekonstruktsiia perepisei naseleniia: kommentarii i rassuzhdeniia]

DOI: https://doi.org/10.31857/S0869541523040097


Type of publication: Research Article

Submitted: 01.05.2023

Accepted: 01.07.2023

About author(s)

Vasily Bublikov | http://orcid.org/0000-0001-5899-1028 | v.bublikov@mail.ru | independent researcher (Chicago, IL, USA)

Evgeni Varshaver | http://orcid.org/0000-0002-5901-8470 | varshavere@gmail.com | Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (82 Vernadsky prospekt, Moscow, 119571, Russia)

Valery Stepanov | Scopus ID 7402659994 | eawarn@mail.ru | Institute of Ethnology and Anthropology, Russian Academy of Sciences (32a Leninsky prospekt, Moscow, 119991, Russia)


population census, constructivism, primordialism, nationality, ethnicity, national identity, multiple identity, ontology


The article presents a critical discussion of arguments made by V.A. Tishkov in his essay on “Counting the Peoples or Deconstructing Population Censuses” [O perepisyvanii narodov, ili dekonstruktsiia perepisei naseleniia] where the author, taking the approach of social constructivism, examines the practices and experience of conducting population censuses in various countries, reviews the outcomes of the 2020–2021 Census in Russia, makes suggestions about the principles of census organization in regard to recording information on ethnicity, nationality, and language, and advances propositions and recommendations on studying the ethnic composition of the population and general ways of understanding ethnicity. These issues are addressed and scrutinized in contributions by V.V. Bublikov (“What Exactly Shows the Question about ‘Nationality’ in Russian Censuses?”), E.A. Varshaver (“Census through the Prism of the Constructivist Approach to Ethnicity”), and V.V. Stepanov (“Observed Society: A Register Instead of the Census”)


Bublikov, V.V., E.A. Varshaver, and V.V. Stepanov. 2023. Dekonstruktsiia perepisei naseleniia: kommentarii i rassuzhdeniia [Deconstruction of Population Censuses: Comments and Considerations]. Etnograficheskoe obozrenie 4: 212–242. https://doi.org/10.31857/S0869541523040097 EDN: HJPWNK

Full text is distributed by eLIBRARY.ru