Author ORCID Identifier

Roman Orlovskyi, 0000-0002-6924-3866


The paper presents a description of the image of Jehovah's Witnesses in the anti-religious books of Soviet authors. A comparison is made of anti-religious books from the times of Nikita Khrushchev and Leonid Brezhnev. The main points that Soviet authors drew upon when describing the Religious Organization of Jehovah's Witnesses and its adherents in the Soviet Union are described. Under Khrushchev, anti-religious texts were imbued with offensive rhetoric in an attempt to humiliate members of this denomination in the minds of Soviet society. In turn, during the Brezhnev era, there was a significant decrease in the emotional and offensive coloring of the description of the Jehovah's Witnesses’ activities. A comparison is made of the use of such caustic statements during the anti-religious campaign and after it. Although the emotional coloring of statements during the Brezhnev era about Jehovah's Witnesses was noticeably reduced, it did not disappear completely. Since Soviet anti-religious publications about Jehovah's Witnesses occurred at the time of the confrontation between the USSR and the USA, any organization centered in the United States was automatically considered hostile and anti-Soviet. The intransigence of the views of the USSR and the organization of Jehovah's Witnesses regarding the activities of the UN international organization was stated. Descriptions of the attitude of Jehovah's Witnesses in the Soviet Union to various social and political spheres of life are presented, in particular, to participation in elections to government bodies, military service, etc. Separately, a description of the attitude to nationality and citizenship is indicated. The low educational level of adherents of this denomination in the USSR is mentioned. A certain transformation was also found in the description by Soviet authors of the members of the Religious Organization since the 1970s, which, in particular, was expressed in the refusal to identify the views of the leaders of this denomination in the United States with the position of its followers in the Soviet Union on a number of issues regarding the spheres of social and political life societies.



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