Promotion of the Spanish Language in Russia as an Instrument of Spain's Cultural Diplomacy

The aim of the study is to consider the foreign policy of the Kingdom of Spain in the field of the popularization of the Spanish language in the Russian Federation as one of the tools of cultural diplomacy. The study is based on a systematic approach, which made it possible to consider the Spanish language spread policy in Russia as a set of interrelated elements. The author also relied on the problem-chronological method, which helped to compile the periodization and consider the development of the Spanish language promotion policy in Russia. Currently, the place of culture in the foreign policy of states has changed significantly. One of the most important foundations of the so-called "soft power" in international relations is cultural diplomacy. This concept, developed by the great powers, allows contributing to strengthening the international positions of the state and mutual understanding between different nations through the exchange of ideas, information, values, traditions, and languages. Today, cultural diplomacy is a new direction for both state and non-state actors operating at various levels. The diplomacy of modern Spain has a recognized international authority. The article presents the main subjects of Spanish cultural diplomacy in the field of the Spanish language spread in Russia. These include the Cervantes Institute, the Education Department of the Spanish Embassy, associations, schools, cultural centers, universities, media. The statistics for 2014-2018 given in the article show that, despite the objective difficulties (the unequal distribution of centers for the study of Spanish, the lack of proper teacher training), there is a positive trend in the field of the Spanish language spread in Russia. The significance of the cross year between Spain and Russia in 2011, the cross year of the Russian and Spanish languages and literatures in 2015, and the cross year of tourism of Russia and Spain in 2016 is noted for the intensification of Russian-Spanish relations. The results of the study led to the conclusion that currently there is s a constant increase in international exchanges in education, tourism, economy, business, and culture between the Russian Federation and the Kingdom of Spain resulting in the expansion of the Spanish language spread policy, especially among Russian young people who show genuine interest in the history and culture of Ibero-American states.

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cultural diplomacy; internationalization of higher education; soft power; Russia; Spain
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