عنوان مقاله [English]
Introduction: National pride is one of the sources of citizens’ identity; therefore, it is very important in developing countries. As a developing country, Kazakhstan is one of the most necessary and important countries in Central Asia. This country gained independence in 1991 with good political and social stability. In this regard, the results of international values survey also show that the citizens of this country have relatively high national pride (mean=3.40). Based on this, the aim of this research is to investigate the impact of social capital as a new concept in political science on the national pride of Kazakh citizens in recent years. This research has been done quantitatively using the secondary analysis of statistical data of "The World Values Survey" (WVS). After dividing social capital into five components, the results showed that three components of social capital, belief in the importance of democracy in society, political trust and membership in social associations, have a positive effect on strengthening the national pride of Kazakh citizens. The findings show that the effect of generalized social trust and religious values on the national pride of Kazakh citizens was not significant.
Questioning the identity of people and societies is one of the most important intellectual issues of mankind throughout history. In this regard, the national pride is a concept close to national identity. One of the regions where national pride has become very important in recent years is Central Asia.
With the collapse of the former Soviet Union, five countries emerged in Central Asia, the largest of which is Kazakhstan. Kazakhstan tried to separate its political and administrative system from Russia. Of course, creating and producing identity and expecting its legitimacy in society is a natural thing; one cannot simply act vertically and from top to bottom. In other words, in order to succeed in this matter, it is necessary for the norms, values and customs and social networks and links to help the governments and help them in reproducing their national identity. In this regard, the present study was conducted with the aim of investigating the effect of some elements of social capital on increasing the feeling of national pride in Kazakh citizens.
Research Question: How do the different components of social capital effect on the development of national pride among Kazakh citizens?
Research Hypothesis: Improving social trust, increasing social norms and social networks and relationships have positive effects on national pride among Kazakh citizens.
Methodology and Theoretical Framework: The methodology of this research is quantitative and based on secondary analysis. The statistical population of this study is all regions of Kazakhstan. The data used to test the research hypotheses were extracted from the WVS Wave 7 dataset (2017-2020). The sample size in this research is 1276 people. Volchok and Narayan believe that the reduction of capital and social bonds in societies weakens the will of individuals to defend their identity and collective interests. In other words, it can be claimed that the nature of social identities requires the expansion of social relations and solidarity, whether mechanical or organic. Considering why social capital has a positive effect on citizens’ national identity, Ikeda et al, argue that the expansion of face-to-face interactions and strengthening of the collective spirit in community creates better feelings toward the community among citizens. From this point of view, social bonds reinforce valued norms and mutual relationships experienced by individuals, which creates a sense of altruism in society. This research tries to test the hypotheses by using Putnam’s (2000) theory and his division of social capital into three components of social trust, social norms, and social networks.
Results and Discussion: After dividing social capital into five components, the results showed that the three components of social capital, the belief in the importance of democracy in society, political trust and membership in social associations, had a positive effect on strengthening the national pride of Kazakh citizens. The findings show that the effect of generalized social trust and religious values on the national pride of Kazakh citizens is not significant.
Conclusion: The results show that the citizens of Kazakhstan have a high sense of pride toward their country and an average of 3.40 for the variable of national pride of Kazakh citizens confirms this issue. A recent wave of WVS data shows that more than 90 percent of Kazakhstani citizens are very proud of their country. This is important because, firstly, Kazakhstan has only been independent for about twenty-one years. Also, various ethnic and religious minorities live in this country which is usually challenging to form a national identity. The results show that even the Russian minority living in Kazakhstan, who are citizens of this country are very proud of their country and are considered a part of the country’s history (average national pride for the Russian minority in Kazakhstan 24 / 3, which is higher than the average of 2.5). The results also show that this variable, i.e., social capital, explains about 10% of strengthening national pride. Considering that various causes and factors affect the phenomena of humanities and especially political science, this level of explanation of national pride by the variable of social capital is completely acceptable.