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Russian president anxious about youth isolation of cultural roots

Moscow, May 30, Interfax - Russian President Vladimir Putin has expressed his concern about the lowering cultural lever of the modern youth.

'According to the experts, people, and especially young ones, are losing their skills to vividly express their minds, to identify inflections and nuances. Many young people are hardly aware or even isolated of their cultural roots,' Putin said on Wednesday as he opened a meeting of the Presidential Council for Culture and Art in the Kremlin.

Many young people have rather low level of 'the culture of behavior,' the president added.

According to the president, though the internet has a great impact on our youth, among its resources only 0.5 percent may be regarded as culturally informative.

'The youth of Russia, as well as of many other countries, is becoming increasingly technocratic,' he said.

'We should learn how to use and improve modern informational webs' for the sake of culture and enlightenment, the president added.

He has criticized also domestic television companies for purchasing poor-quality TV products in other countries.

There is "a common trend toward commercializing culture, which is not always oriented toward satisfying sophisticated tastes today," Putin told.

"Over more than 15 years, our young people have lived in a massive cultural influence of surrogates from abroad," the head of state said.

"Television has not played a positive role on all occasions, either. Everything that is cheap is purchased on the international market," he said.

"Of course, we need to understand and accept other countries' culture and know how to use its best features," Putin said.

"We have always done so. But first of all we should create conditions that would allow the younger generation to grow amid the salubrious atmosphere of domestic culture, which will help nurture sophisticated artistic taste and behavior standards in them," the president said.

It is also important to develop "cultural immunity" in the young, he said.