A History of Russian Thought

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The history of ideas has played a central role in Russia's political and social history. Understanding its intellectual tradition and the way the intelligentsia have shaped the nation is crucial to understanding the Russia of today. This new history examines important intellectual and cultural currents (the Enlightenment, nationalism, nihilism, and religious revival) and key themes (conceptions of the West and East, the common people, and attitudes to capitalism and natural science) in Russian intellectual history. Concentrating on the Golden Age of Russian thought in the mid nineteenth century, the contributors also look back to its eighteenth-century origins in the flowering of culture following the reign of Peter the Great, and forward to the continuing vitality of Russia's classical intellectual tradition in the Soviet and post-Soviet eras. With brief biographical details of over fifty key thinkers and an extensive bibliography, this book provides a fresh, comprehensive overview of Russian intellectual history.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
'Professor Derek Offord says A History of Russian Thought, published this month by Cambridge University Press will be of interest to anyone interested in discovering the origins of present day Russia's nationalistic, religious and authoritarian preoccupations.' Bristol Evening Post
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780521875219
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press
  • Publication date: 4/1/2010
  • Pages: 462
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.10 (d)

Meet the Author

William Leatherbarrow is Emeritus Professor of Russian at the University of Sheffield.

Derek Offord is Professor of Russian Intellectual History at the University of Bristol.

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Table of Contents

Dates of reigns

Russian titles of journals, newspapers and miscellanies

Pt. I Context 1

1 Introduction William Leatherbarrow Leatherbarrow, William Derek Offord Offord, Derek 3

2 The political and social order David Saunders Saunders, David 17

3 Russian intelligentsias G. M. Hamburg Hamburg, G. M. 44

Pt. II Intellectual Currents 71

4 Russia's eighteenth-century Enlightenment W. Gareth Jones Jones, W. Gareth 73

5 Conservatism in the age of Alexander I and Nicholas I William Leatherbarrow Leatherbarrow, William 95

6 Nihilism Richard Peace Peace, Richard 116

7 Tradition and counter-tradition: the radical intelligentsia and classical Russian literature Gary Saul Morson Morson, Gary Saul 141

8 Religious renaissance in the Silver Age Ruth Coates Coates, Ruth 169

Pt. III Themes and Constructs 195

9 The West Vera Tolz Tolz, Vera 197

10 The East David Schimmelpenninck van der Oye van der Oye, David Schimmelpenninck 217

11 The people Derek Offord Offord, Derek 241

12 The intelligentsia and capitalism Wayne Dowler Dowler, Wayne 263

13 Natural science Charles Ellis Ellis, Charles 286

Pt. IV The Afterlife of Classical Thought 309

14 Continuities in the Soviet period Galin Tihanov Tihanov, Galin 311

15 Dialectical materialism and Soviet science in the 1920s and 1930s Daniel Todes Todes, Daniel Nikolai Krementsov Krementsov, Nikolai 340

16 Afterwod James Scanlan Scanlan, James 368

Biographical details of thinkers and writers 380

Selected bibliography 403

Index 426

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