The current article aims to discuss the construction of femininity in Soviet fashion discourse during the 1950s-1960s. Through visual materials and archival documents, the study shows what Soviet women in Leningrad expected to wear and to Soviet feminine ideal differ from Western models. The analysis prompts to the finding that despite the official declaration about equality of men and women in socialism, Soviet fashion discourse reflected a heterosexual matrix, and the Soviet feminine ideal did not differ from Western models.
There is a paradox in the aftermath of the global imperial crisis in the region of Eastern Europe and Eurasia. The Habsburg Empire which had been thought about as the katechon of future world of federalism broke into nation-states with regimes of accommodation and repression of national minorities. The Russian Empire which had been thought about as the future centralized nation-state transformed into a federation with layered forms of autonomy and decentralization. The exploration of this paradox begins with the critique of the image of the Russian Empire as a centralized and centralizing state and exploration of inclusive and differentiated governance and ways in which this political formation was reflected in political discourses of reformist and oppositional movements which in one way or another imagined the post-imperial order. The paper then traces the constitutional debates in the revolutionary contexts of 1905 and 1917 and assesses how these debates reflected local and global discourses of imagining the post-imperial order and how they were incorporated into the constitutions adopted on the territory of the former Russian Empire. The global imperial crisis which brought down the Qing, Russian, Ottoman, German and Habsburg empires stimulated imagination of post-imperial order not only in the named contexts, but also in the British, French and other cases. The circulation and synthesis of ideas fostered by the miscellany of the crumbling empires and the diversity within each of them produced a great variety of imaginations. The non-Soviet constitutional projects of 1917–1921 and the Soviet constitutions of 1918 and 1924 incorporated the experience of the Russian Empire and other imperial and post-imperial formations. The Constitution of the Far Eastern Republic, for instance, borrowed the concept of non-territorial autonomy from the Ukrainian Constitution of 1918, while the ineffectiveness of the formal right to territorial autonomy resembled that in the Czechoslovak Constitution of 1920. The multilateral transfers and borrowings, both from the Russian imperial and other contexts, resulted in the departure of the 1924 Constitution of the Soviet Union from the initial Bolshevik plans. Instead of establishing a non-national class-centered formation, it became a mere preamble to a multinational confederation to be developed by its sovereign participants, which included two federations.
This paper outlines the complexity of interactions between Russian Orthodox monasteries and fish resources of the Russian North in the White and Barents Sea basins. The authors consider the complete cycle of monastic fishing activities as a complex of routine practices of an organizational, managerial, and commercial character. They demonstrate that the monks developed the organizational structure and management system that crucially contributed to the transformation of traditional fishing practices into the market-oriented exploitation of the natural resources of the White and Barents seas.
We now know that the Iron Curtain was not an impenetrable wall but, rather, a porous imaginary boundary through which people, ideas, and goods could travel. This volume is a fresh attempt to look across two blocs to examine variations, similarities, and connections between what we used to call East and West. As editors Astrid Mignon Kirchhof and John R. McNeill explain in the introduction, the volume aims to challenge a traditional question about the East-West divide. It focuses on the environment and its connections to politics, culture, and society.
Since the nineteenth century, access to and the development of natural
resources became an important element of national and international politics. Resource
security emerged as an issue vital to national security; and resource competition and
crises gave rise to international tensions as well as to technological innovation and new
modes of transnational cooperation. This paper discusses ongoing collaborative research
activities in the Tensions of Europe network. Three broader themes are presented: (1)
perceptions and constructions of resources, resource crises, and resource futures; (2)
globalized resource chains and environmental transformation; and (3) managing crises:
technologies, expertise, and the politics of natural resources.
The article explores Vladimir Arsen’ev’s rationalization of the economic activities that he observed during expeditions in the Russian Far East, predominantly in the Ussuri region. It analyzes his categorization of the local population, which was derived from nonmatching taxonomies and included concepts such as nationality, religion, race, and subjecthood. Disentangling this categorization helps to outline the main contexts that influenced Arsen’ev, such as postwar political and military concerns, challenges of settler colonialism, and nationalizing empire. The article shows how Arsen’ev’s intertwined life experiences as a military officer and geographer, colonization official, ethnographer, and resource-conscious naturalist outlined the limits of his imagination and provided the ground for his intellectual innovations.
Focusing on the accelerated use of limestone as a building material in Russia, and government sponsored scientiﬁc studies of widespread limestone deposits throughout the nineteenth-century, this contribution investigates the process of transforming common rocks into measurable and valuable natural resources indispensable for actualizing industrial development on a national scale. Special attention is given to the production of a new body of expert knowledge on the speciﬁc properties, qualities and practical uses of raw stone materials, to the actors involved in producing this knowledge, and to their crucial role in forming a scientiﬁc support system for the mining and construction industries, which gradually developed an institutional hierarchy in its own right. One of the important points of the article is, on the one hand, to show that scientiﬁc engagement with the material was closely interrelated to ‘resource nationalism’ policies that became an inﬂuential driving force of material sciences institutionalization on the national scale. On the other hand, it is argued that the international circulation of knowledge, technics, and standardization of testing procedures also greatly inﬂuenced that process.
From the second half of the XIX century, public gardens and boulevards have become an integral part of provincial Russian towns. They played an aesthetic and sanitary-hygienic role in urban space, being, in fact, green oases in a dusty and noisy town. However, in the XX century, the functional purpose of town gardens has changed: the recreational component is being replaced by the cultural and entertainment one, which became dominant in the Soviet period. This article considers the process of urban space greening in the provincial town of Cherepovets as an example of this process and transforming the functions of the town garden. It also presents the analysis of everyday practices of using urban flora by the population of Cherepovets. The methodological basis of the work is urban environmental history. The research is based on archival and office materials, official statistics, and periodicals. Soviet power kept the tradition of new blocks greening, that formed in the pre-revolutionary period. At the same time, the entertainment and leisure functions of the recreation park supplanted the recreational function, and everyday practices of the town residents showed a dismissive and utilitarian attitude towards the town green spaces. It was due to the peculiarities of urbanization in the city. In the conditions of the constantly expanding town space and the influx of rural population, green spaces could not prevent the degradation of the natural environment, which led to the destabilization of the ecological situation in Cherepovets and prevented the sustainable development of the city.
This article argues that the history of Russian constitutional and parliamentary reform in the early 20th century can be cast in a new light in view of the global transformation of political life under the challenge of imperial diversity and mass politics. The article points out that imperial diversity as a challenge to democratic government was not unique to the Russian Empire. The character of the Russian Empire was marked by peculiarities; it was shaped by composite and hybrid imperial space, which placed the challenge of imperial diversity at the center of political practices and imaginaries. The article traces the history of political reform in the Russian Empire in the early 20th century focusing on the reform of the Sejm of the Grand Duchy of Finland and the novel practices and political imaginaries of imperial diversity in the first and second State Duma. The exploration of the history of the constitutional reform in the Russian Empire of early 20th century demonstrates that rather than being absolute antagonists to representative government, Russian imperial politics and traditions of imperial sovereignty nested possibilities of compromise and redefinition of political solidarity in the space of diversity.
Keywords History of the Russian Empire, history of the State Duma, global history of parliamentarism, pseudo-constitutionalism, Russian liberalism
Ukrainian parliamentarism and constitutionalism have a long history. Its brightest episode occurred 100 years ago, in 1917–1921, when the Ukrainian activists tried to cope with the breakup of the Romanov Empire by suggesting various projects of its reconstruction. In this article, I argue that the history of these projects began at least half a century earlier, when a young professor of history at Kiev University, Mykhailo Drahomanov, started to reflect upon future reorganization of the Russian Empire into a parliamentary state. Being an ardent advocate of turning the empire into a representative democracy, Drahomanov still felt uneasy about unapologetic support of parliamentarism. Having embraced Proudhonian idea of anarchy or self-government, he realized that the existence of parliament was not a universal cure for all political ills of the Russian Empire, especially for the main one—extreme state centralization. Hence, his views of political reconstruction of the empire did not necessarily mean transforming it into the Russian Republic. It seems that a reasonable and reasoned monarch, who could turn the empire into a federal state with a wide local self-government, would totally fulfill Drahomanov’s ideas of future Russia. His enormous influence upon the pre-war Ukrainian intellectuals explains why only few of them seriously discussed an idea of Ukrainian state independence in 1917.
This text is, above all, a grateful testament to a local saint’s continued liveliness. It is a new hagiography, a story of a woman who gave away everything—her house, her money, her possessions, and even her name—who wandered homeless, and who has helped people resolve desperate situations ever since. Retelling the fragmented stories of how people asked for her intervention, and of how, through their actions, new mycelia of power grew on the ruins of the Soviet socialist state, I hope that this essay helps opens a loophole: a space between naïve faith and sociological faithlessness in which we might understand today’s miracles without crushing them by the secular objectivist gaze. Looking through this loophole, this essay retells some of stories I heard about the Soviet collapse and about how people survived it: about gleaning the planned economy’s rubble, chance connections, personal ties, Divine Providence, fast fortunes, and the enclosure of fields.
Lacking state-imposed quarantines, we’ve been abandoned to personal choices. Advising us to save ourselves and our neighbors by staying home, our governments struggle to keep the wrong doubts from going viral. The Russian state, in particular, has announced crackdowns on fake news: citing the danger of Covid-19, new laws harshly penalize the “spread of false information.” But accusations of falsity are as bottomless as the hoaxes they try to contain. States accuse each other of spreading disinformation, and scholars show that these accusations are themselves often false, that “an EU-funded body set up to fight disinformation ends up producing it.” The falsity of such accusations of falsity gives fodder for new accusations. And thus the battle against an infectious pandemic becomes overshadowed by the battle for faith, against doubt. In this “infodemic,” America’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) urges citizens to do these “three easy things: Don’t believe the rumors; Don’t pass them along; Go to trusted sources of information to get the facts about the federal (COVID-19) response.”
Can a state agency order citizens (not) to believe?
The article examines the first published ethnographic map of Ukraine, which appeared in Lviv in 1861. While carefully analysing new archival and published sources from both the Habsburg and Romanov empires, it puts this map into the wider context of contemporary Ukrainian national movement. The author argues that Russian Ukrainian activists of 1860s were unquestionably interested in the extent of Ukrainian national territory and had handwritten maps of Ukrainian national territory in their possession. Contrary to the conventional narratives that the 1861 map was drawn in Lviv by Mykhailo Kossak, it argues instead that the map could have been produced by the Russian Ukrainian activist, Mykhailo Levchenko, and was later transferred to Galicia for publication. Stipulating the need to take into account sources from both the Romanov and Habsburg empires together with studying both cartographic and textual sources, the article argues that similar studies should necessarily be located at the juncture of history of cartography and the intellectual history of mental mapping. Only such approach will provide an undistorted picture of a process of national territorialization.
The transformation of the peaceful demonstrations, which started on November 21, 2013, against Yanukovych’s decision to suspend the signing of the association agreement with the EU, into the bloodshed in Kyiv and eastern Ukraine, has vividly demonstrated that the rhetoric of the “protection of Russian-speakers’ rights” can be easily transformed from the level of “discursive threats” to the real threat of Ukraine’s dissolution. Therefore, the article seeks to explain how language-related issues were securitized in public discussions in leading Ukrainian blogs and on news websites that function in the Russian language after the Revolution of Dignity. The analysis of journalistic articles and users’ comments encompasses the period of 2013–2015 when the Russian–Ukrainian conflict and the discussion of language issues reached its climax. It is argued that despite an extreme presence of anti-Russian (anti-imperialist) arguments and consolidation over the idea of Ukrainian as the only state language (“one nation–one language”), arguments that supported an equal legal status of Russian- and Ukrainian-speakers were also to be found in selected digital media outlets. The analysis has also demonstrated that for most online users of Ukrainian digital media that function in Russian, the state language is constructed as the language discriminated against in its own national state.
The article is devoted to the analysis of the process of the organization of centralized water supply systems in small Russian towns at the end of the nineteenth and the beginning of the twentieth century. The causes and the process of pipeline building in three small cities, each of which became significant transport hubs by 1914 and had populations of less than 50,000 people, are described in the research. The research interest in these towns is led by understanding how the transport position of small cities promoted the improvement of water supplies in them. It was essential due to the growth of the urban populations and increasing cases of cholera epidemics in transport-hub cities.
This article discusses the problem of comparative study with digital and textual sources using the example of the Sound Toll Registers and Sankt-Peterburgskie Vedomosti. Both sources contain statistical information on commercial ship voyages, which one is important for the history of maritime trade and commercial shipping of the Baltic region. But at the same time, the source’s logic and visual forms differ a lot. In order to introduce both sources’ potential to researchers, there is a brief description of the Sound Toll Registers and Sankt-Peterburgskie Vedomosti presented. Because of differences in sources’ internal logic and visual forms researches have to compare it carefully, not to lose information or meet incomprehensible results. In order to avoid such dangers, I invite researches to try my approach to compare the Sound Toll Registers and Sankt-Peterburgskie Vedomosti. My approach is focused on careful big data’s analyze and examining of statistical sample’s representativeness in time. This approach is based on comparable samplings of the sources’ data and case-studies. It was examined on commercial shipping in the port of SaintPetersburg in 1760 during the Seven Years War.
Legal practice in Muscovite local centers before the Law Code of 1649 has been poorly studied. This article uses comparative analysis to study two groups of sources about the legal process and law enforcement in Novgorod the Great in late 16th – early 17th century. The first source is a record book of deeds of Novgorod Court Office (1584-1605). It was created between two major crises that affected Muscovy during this period. The second group of sources encompassed account books of Novgorod Court fees, composed between 1611 and 1615. These books belonged to the lower level of justice, the City Court of Novgorod. The comparative analysis of these sources shows the complicated hierarchy of legal instances. During the Time of Troubles, the hierarchy became simpler. The courts were ruled by both coded and customary law: the existing codes (Sudebniks) did not cover all the diversity of legal cases.
The book is on the carantines providedby Muscovite powers in 16-17th centuries in North-Western part of the tsardom. The book studies the struggle against epidemies and plagues in very special circumstainces of the Muscovite Tsardom
This article analyzes an almost unprecedented religious situation, which emerged after the 1905 “Edict of Toleration.” The Edict set in motion a number of processes in Russian religious landscape and created a legal foundation of what may be called a situation of multi-Orthodoxy. The author explores the legal co-existence of two church hierarchies who called themselves Orthodox: Russian Synodal Orthodox Church and Old Believers’ Church of Belokrinitsa agreement. The Edict and the following Circular no. 4628 marked a turning point for religious seekers who considered conversion from one church to another. A number of requests for re-affiliation, sent to Belokrinitsa’s archbishop from representatives of various religious groups, mostly from the Synodal Church, sheds a light on how this situation of multi-Orthodoxy operated, how it was regulated and what were the contradictions emerging on the boundaries of these two canonical domains.