This article argues that space is one of the formative elements in the construction of Russianness and explores how the occupation of the territory shaped the development of the country. Drawing on examples, I argue that 1. Russia can be presented as a conglomerate of marginalities — a centre and a periphery in itself. Russian peripheries are not just plural, but also orientated towards different directions. The core deploys therefore a centripetal force. The poly-periphery that constitutes Russia produces an extended liminality.
Thus they are often referred to in English-language research as " Viking Rus'". The scholarly consensus  is that Rus' people originated in what is currently coastal Middle Sweden around the eighth century and that their name has the same origin as Roslagen in Sweden with the older name being Roden. Basing themselves among Slavic and Volga Finns in the upper Volga region , they formed a diaspora of traders and raiders exchanging furs and slaves for silk, silver and other commodities available to the east and south. Around the ninth century, on the river routes to the Black Sea , they had an unclear but significant role in forming the principality of Kievan Rus , gradually assimilating with local Slavic populations. They also extended their operations much further east and south, among the Bulgars and Khazars , on the routes to the Caspian Sea. By around the eleventh century, the word Rus ' was increasingly associated with the principality of Kiev, and the term Varangian was becoming more common as a term for Scandinavians traveling the river-routes.
Indo-European, Ural-Altaic, and diverse other peoples have occupied what is now the territory of Russia since the 2nd millennium bce , but little is known about their ethnic identity, institutions, and activities. In ancient times, Greek and Iranian settlements appeared in the southernmost portions of what is now Ukraine. Trading empires of that era seem to have known and exploited the northern forests—particularly the vast triangular-shaped region west of the Urals between the Kama and Volga rivers —but these contacts seem to have had little lasting impact.
The use of the name in its most comprehensive sense dates only from the expansion of the empire in the 19th century; to the historian who writes of the earlier growth of the empire, Russia means, at most, Russia in Europe, or Muscovy, as it was usually called until the 18th century, from Moscow, its ancient capital. The Russian empire stretches over a vast territory in E. Europe and N. Asia, with an area exceeding 8,, sq.