Human Tradition in Imperial Russia

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Overview

This compelling set of essays presents richly human stories of individual and group experiences, as well as of key events in the history of Imperial Russia. Beginning with Peter I's dress reforms in the early eighteenth century and concluding with poets arising out of a stratified and largely urban working class between the revolutions of 1905 and 1917, the essays introduce readers to many of the major changes in Imperial Russian history and their consequences. We see the effects of reforms; the consequences of an economy and society built on serfdom; as well as the development of a civil society, the "woman question," urbanization, secularization, and modernity.

At the same time, the contributors' nuanced reconstruction of personal and group histories provides important correctives to the traditional grand narratives of Russian history. These microhistories reveal individuals' daily negotiations with authority figures, be they government officials, religious leaders, individuals of another class, or even members of their own class. As this book vividly shows, individuals, groups, and events raised out of obscurity remind us of the messiness of everyday life; of people's dreams, frustrations, and transformations; as well as of their sense of self and the community around them.

Contributions by: Rodney D. Bohac, Barbara Alpern Engel, ChaeRan Y. Freeze, William B. Husband, Laura L. Phillips, David L. Ransel, Christine Ruane, Rochelle G. Ruthchild, Rebecca Spagnolo, Mark D. Steinberg, Elise Kimerling Wirtschafter, and Christine D. Worobec

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Editorial Reviews

Russian Review
Historians of Anglo-Russian relations and Protestantism in early nineteenth century Russia will find much of interest here.
— Susan Smith-Peter
Canadian Slavonic Papers
There is much to recommend this slim volume for the general public aware of only the most basic details of imperial Russian social history. Worobec has done a splendid job of editing the book and has provided each chapter with a useful abstract, set of questions, and suggested readings that are mostly in English. Additionally, each contribution is brief and written in a lively and engaging style. . . . As a whole, this volume succeeds in placing Imperial Russia within the human tradition.
Helena Goscilo
Benefiting from a treasure-trove of archival sources, these twelve wide-ranging analyses offer abundant insights into individual and collective lives under tsardom. The volume showcases the ample intellectual rewards of intertwining personal narratives with national policies and imperial aspirations.
History In Review - Boris Segel
Without exception, all of the essays in this collection are eminently readable and each provides keen insights into Russian society and history. . . . Will fascinate general readers, students of all ages, social historians, and anyone interested in Russian history. . . . Useful as a supplemental text in college-level courses in Russian history, as well as social history and anthropology courses.
Russian Review - Susan Smith-Peter
Historians of Anglo-Russian relations and Protestantism in early nineteenth century Russia will find much of interest here.
William Rosenberg
Some of the most important issues of Imperial Russian history are best illustrated by looking carefully at aspects and episodes of everyday life. In this superb collection, well-known scholars explore the Russian 'human condition' in fascinating and informative detail. Christine Worobec has provided us with a marvelous teaching tool as well as a volume of first-rate scholarship.
William G. Rosenberg
Some of the most important issues of Imperial Russian history are best illustrated by looking carefully at aspects and episodes of everyday life. In this superb collection, well-known scholars explore the Russian 'human condition' in fascinating and informative detail. Christine Worobec has provided us with a marvelous teaching tool as well as a volume of first-rate scholarship.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780742537378
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 1/16/2009
  • Series: Human Tradition around the World Series
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 198
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.60 (d)

Meet the Author

Christine D. Worobec is Board of Trustees Professor and Distinguished Research Professor at Northern Illinois University.
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Table of Contents

Introduction
Chapter 1: Fashion and the Rise of Consumer Capitalism in Russia
Chapter 2: How One Runaway Peasant Challenged the Authority of the Russian State: The Case Against Maria Semenova
Chapter 3: Life on the River: The Education of a Merchant Youth
Chapter 4: The Good Society of Russian Enlightenment Theater
Chapter 5: The 1827 Peasant Uprising at Bernovo
Chapter 6: Reframing Public and Private Space in Mid-Nineteenth Century Russia: The Triumvirate of Anna Filosofova, Nadezhda Stasova, and Mariia Trubnikova
Chapter 7: Happy Birthday, Siberia! Reform and Public Opinion in Russia's "Colony," 1881–1882
Chapter 8: Life in the Big City: Migrants Cope with "Daily Events"
Chapter 9: Freedom and its Limitations: A Peasant Wife Seeks to Escape her Abusive Husband
Chapter 10: "She Done Him In": Marital Breakdown in a Jewish Family
Chapter 11: Serving the Household, Asserting the Self: Urban Domestic Servant Activism, 1900–1917
Chapter 12: Plebeian Poets in Fin de Siècle Russia: Stories of the Self
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