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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.
During the Cold War, official Soviet institutions organized tens of exhibitions of an American figurative artist Rockwell Kent. These exhibitions, undertaken bypassing the official United States, demonstrate that promotion of Kent in the USSR was an exclusively Soviet enterprise. Examining the role of Soviet institutions in Kent’s success, the article sheds new light on the Soviet approach to the representation of American visual art during the Cold War.
Basing on unique findings from American and Russian archives, the article provides a comprehensive analysis of political and aesthetical factors, which predetermined Kent’s incredible popularity in the Soviet Union. Contextualizing the Soviet representation of Kent within relevant Cold War contexts, the article argues that Kent occupied a specific symbolic position in Soviet culture, as Soviet propaganda re-conceptualized the artist’s biography and established the Myth of Rockwell Kent. This myth served for legitimization of Soviet ideology and for anti-American propaganda.
The article presents two addenda to the author’s recent study concerning the manuscript variants πυρρούλας and πυρρὸς ὕλας in Arist. Hist. An. 592b22. In that previous work, an attempt was made to trace back the Latin fortune of the Greek ὕλας. Now, we scrutinize D’Arcy W. Thompson’s assertion πυρρούλας means ‘bullfinch’ in Modern Greek. Thompson mistakenly refers to Theodor von Heldreich – it is apparently Demetrios Bikelas who he is quoting. The latter, in turn, could have taken the "Modern Greek" bird name πυρρούλας from Skarlatos Vyzantios’ 1835 dictionary. Given Vyzantios’ purist and prescriptive approach to lexicography, he must have drawn the word from a learned source based on Aristotle rather than from a vernacular one close to the oral tradition. That is why Thompson’s "Modern Greek" argumentation for identifying Aristotle’s πυρρούλας with the bullfinch most probably results from a vicious circle. This corroborates Carl Jacob Sundevall’s identification of πυρρούλας with the robin and, furthermore, increases the plausibility of the reading πυρρὸς ὕλας. The second part of the article analyzes three testimonies of the rare bird name πυρρίας/πυρρία and of the homonymous denomination of a snake. Although apparently irrelevant for assessing the variant readings in Arist. Hist. An. 592b22, these words deserve examination. Namely, a comparison of manuscript readings and possible emendations in Ath. 2, 69, 3, Dionys. Per. Ixeut. 3, 13, 22 and Hsch. 4461 suggests that Claudius Salmasius’ conjecture in Ath. 2, 69, 3 should be rejected. Another conjecture is ventured instead.
In the interview to Ab ImperioJournal within the series “Conversation with Author” Pieter Judson shares the research laboratory behind his revisionist account of the history of the Habsburg Empire (The Habsburg Empire: A New History) which was published by Harvard University press in English in 2016. The interview reveals an interesting historiographic situation at the end of the 20thcentury when historians of the Habsburg Empire felt the need to differentiate its experience from the domineering perspective coming from the history of the Russian Empire, while historians who rediscovered the imperial dimension in Russian history followed the ideal-type of the Habsburg multinational empire. The major thrust of revising the history of Habsburg Empire by Judson is twofold: to explore in the long dureeperspective the vitality of the empire-building (“state-building from above” and “state-building from below”) in the Habsburg case through institutions and subjecthood, i.e. to decenter the national narratives about the composite Habsburg space and the idiom of inevitable decline of the Habsburg empire as another “sick man” in Europe; and to advance a systematic and symmetric comparison of modern statehood in Europe, in which the Habsburg case does not look exotic, having the imperial dimension. The interview touches on the question of global and comparative history of empires, the usefulness of comparative taxonomy of colonial-continental empire, the problem of analytical languages and hegemony of nation-centered imaginary in description of the historical experience of empire, the balance between political and social and cultural history approaches to understanding empire, and, finally, on the reception of the book in the region.
The article examines a crucial shift in models of domestication of the Soviet Far North during the Thaw period. The closure of the Gulag system and the social transformations of the 1950s caused changes in the social space of the Soviet North and in the role of expert knowledge in the USSR. By focusing on modernist urban projects for the Soviet Arctic, I analyse how urban specialists during the Thaw attempted to formulate a new conception of the North as a place for ‘ordinary life’ and therefore transform a peripheral region into an ‘average’ Soviet space.
This chapter focuses on imageries and historical change in the European Russian Arctic.
Providing the literary and philosophical comparative context of Petr Guber’s short story “Job Dulder (A Variation on the Old Theme)” (1923), the essay analyses a pre-Holocaust literary treatment of the Book of Job, enacting the collision of the traditional (Judaic) worldview of East European Jews with disastrous sides of modernity in Word War I and its aftermath. The paper juxtaposes two major actualizations of the Book of Job in modernist texts — (1) its appraisal in In Job Balances (1929) by Russian-Jewish existential philosopher Lev Shestov as a basis for his distinction between European rational philosophy and metaphysical belief and (2) a self-consciously anti-cathartic literary re-enactments of the Job story in Ilya Ehrenburg’s The Extraordinary Adventures of Julio Jurenito and his Disciples (1922), Guber’s story, and Isaac Bashevis Singer’s “Job” (1970). The essay shows in what historical and ideological contexts these post-metaphysical subversions of the biblical proto-text are rooted. In these terms, “Job Dulder” presents an important variant of the Modernist thematization of the Job story. It situates the Jewish predicament between the hammer and the anvil of both Russian and Polish nationalisms during WWI. I argue that this representation of the precariousness of Russian-Polish-Jewish relations was generated by a specific historical and ideological situation in Soviet Russia in the early 1920s.
Nowadays, when English has firmly established itself as a lingua franca (ELF) in academic settings, it is very important to study the features of texts written by L2 speakers who come from a variety of cultural and L1 backgrounds and who use ELF in their academic communication. The present study focuses on clusters of epistemic stance expressions used in research articles written by L2 speakers. The analysis of 20 papers from the SciELF corpus reveals the patterns in the use of epistemic stance clusters, their distribution in different sections of research articles and the functions the clusters perform at the textual level. The results show that there are many similarities in the distribution and functions of epistemic stance clusters in texts. It suggests that the way L2 speakers who are professionals in their fields express epistemic stance is more influenced by the norms of the genre and the discipline than by their L1 and cultural backgrounds.
Статья посвящена реконструкции историко-культурного контекста рубежа 1920-30-х гг. и интеллекутальных практик, которые позволяли молодому поколению авангардистов сочетать интерес к экспериментальному искусству с советскими идеологическими установками.
The article is devoted to an intepretation of the role of Russian emigration in the formation and in the functioning of the unofficial cultural communities of Moscow and Leningrad during the 68s-80s. The first emigration and the second one didn't influence essentially the nonconformist communities. Meanwhile the third emigration played the leading role in the history of the underground because it distributed information on the independent culture in USSR, as well as it linked tightly the Soviet intellectuals with their colleagues in Europe and USA.
This article examines the nature of Soviet consumption and technological development through the history of milk and milk packaging between the 1950s and 1970s. Based on published and archival materials, the paper focuses on the role that milk played in Soviet nutrition and the role that packaging played in Soviet consumption. The article also examines the modernization of technology for making packaging as well as technology transfer from the West. It concludes that, as in many Western countries, both the Soviet state and Soviet specialists saw it as important to increase the consumption of milk after the war, but the meaning of milk changed. Milk, a basic staple for nutrition, became a matter of science and specialists sought to explain its positive effects. In addition, due to the development of the paper and chemical industries, new forms of milk packaging, more practical in their uses, were introduced in the West. Soviet leaders and specialists saw the new packaging as a desirable feature of modernity, but were unsuccessful in launching domestic technologies for manufacturing such packaging. While experimenting with domestic technology, Soviet producers also received foreign equipment for making milk packaging. Nevertheless, the capacity of such foreign equipment was not enough to satisfy growing demand and the consumption of “modern packaging” remained lower than in the West until the introduction of capitalism and, with it, foreign companies into the Russian market in the 1990s.
The main source for my study is a set of notarial deeds produced in Tana by the Venetian notaries Nicolo de Varsis and Benedetto Smeritis. These sources have not been published previously and have never been the subject of intensive study. Researchers have long regarded Venetian notarial acts as one of the most important sources of the economic, social, political, ethnic, and legal history of the Italian trading stations. The documents drawn up by the Italian notaries in the Levant, in the trading stations of the Eastern Mediterranean, and on the Black Sea coast have attracted the attention of the scholars from different fields, being a relevant source for reconstructing the history of the Italian republics, Eastern Europe, and the region at the edge of the Caucasus.
Italian notarial documents are quite numerous because the trading stations’ commerce and political relations with the Byzantine Empire, Russian principalities, the Golden Horde, and the states of the East were intensive and this produced plenty of documentary material. Undoubtedly, a large part of the archives of the trading stations perished during the Ottoman conquest. Nevertheless, the republics retained copies of many original documents and books of accounts, which they sent to the metropolis and attached to the reports of officers. According to the legislation of the republic of Venice, notarial deeds passed from one notary to his successor and then came to the archives. Currently, 1194 Venetian deeds are extant, drawn up in Tana by some thirty-four well-known notaries. Later acts, in contrast to earlier, survived, as a rule, not as instrumentae (original papers), but as imbreviaturae (copies left by the notaries).
In the 1990s a number of Western art critics, with Dave Hickey foremost among them, rejected the critical aesthetics of negation and distance as elitist, favoring a more mutualist, egalitarian potential they associated with beauty. This article tests the legitimacy of paralleling the New Academy and the concurrent beauty trend in the West. The focus of my analysis falls on the career of Olga Tobreluts between 1990 and 2003. As I argue, the similar appeal to beauty in the work of Tobreluts and the New Academy in fact partakes of both negation and affirmation while ignoring their difference, undermining the opposition between enthrallment and estrangement (or beauty and the sublime) that made the Western debate about beauty possible.
This article explores the history of the Russian monopolistic companies that operated in the international market for blubber in the first half of the eighteenth century. It argues that the long-held view that the companies were unsuccessful is not supported by the statistics relating to the trade, which indicate impressive progress in terms of market revenue and the redistribution of profits. Moreover, the authorities had ambitious strategic goals for the project as a whole that entailed more than simple commercial success. The companies, in fact, were perceived as an instrument that would transform landlocked Muscovy into a leading power in the international maritime economy. The article analyzes the essence and the consequences of these conflicting perspectives.
This two-part overview of contemporary Russian anthropology focuses in detail on the work of several scholars and situates it in the changing landscape of Russian academia. The main issue I address is debates about an academic identity of Russian anthropology as ‘historical science’. Given that in Western anthropology, history has become one of the leading modes of anthropological analysis and that the turn to history marked a radical repositioning of anthropology’s very subject, it is important to explore how such configurations of history and anthropology work in other anthropological traditions and what the reasons are for turning to history or, conversely, avoiding it, for specific national, continental and transnational anthropological schools. In this article, I explore these questions by focusing on anthropology in Russia with an aim of reassembling the relationship between anthropology and history from the point of view of the anthropology of time. I ask what temporal frameworks underscore the relationship between anthropology and history. I explore these understandings ethnographically, that is, through ethnographic interviews with Russian scholars in addition to close readings of their works.
This two-part overview of contemporary Russian anthropology focuses in detail on the work of several scholars and situates it in the changing landscape of Russian academia. The main issue I address is the debated academic identity of anthropology as ‘historical science’ as it is officially classed in Russia. Proceeding in a case-study manner, I aim to re-conceptualise the relationship between anthropology and history from the point of view of the anthropology of time, not merely by historicising anthropology but also by anthropologising history. I ask what temporal frameworks underscore the relationship between anthropology and history as it is thought about by the scholars I explore.
This article examines the changing patterns of industrial conflict in a rapidly modernizing Eastern European city, focusing on a multi-ethnic industrial hub. I follow repertoires of contention in four crucial moments characterized by shifting scales of the geopolitical embeddedness of the city: (1) an early Luddite riot of 1861 in the Polish autonomous sub-state within the Russian Empire, (2) the first massive labor protest and the following pogrom of 1892 in the city already fully subsumed under the imperial governance, (3) a failed revolution of 1905 with a sophisticated feedback loop between party politics and street emotions, (4) mobilization practices during the German military occupation during the IWW culminating in the tram workers strike of 1917, (5) developing forms of industrial bargaining in the early Polish state after 1918. This broad picture spanning over 60 years (1861-1921) is grounded in the existing secondary literature, extensive queries of primary sources such as administration reports, court proceedings and petitions, and the analysis of political leaflets and biographical testimonies of the working class militants. Such a cross temporal comparison brings a broader outlook on the labor unrest in Russian Poland and beyond, which before was researched only in fragmented manner.
In 1923–1924 the Bolshevik Party experienced political conflict that took the form of a public confrontation between two trends related to issues of intra-party practice and economic policies. This essay examines the Left Opposition in the Bolshevik party, which is widely known as the Trotskyist Opposition; yet was not a unified faction led by Lev Trotsky, but a heterogeneous and informal movement in support of democratic reform in the party. The problem of party, government, and economic leadership led to friction and then a split in the party in 1926–1928. The majority of the Central Committee and the Opposition became the ideological and organizational core of the trends which combined into stable or situational coalitions.
This article examines the industrial wastes and environmental effects of Soviet technological development through the history of the Karelian Isthmus, a border territory that had previously been Finnish. Focusing primarily on the history of two large enterprises – the Svetogorskii (former Enso) and Sovetskii (former Johannes) pulp and paper making plants, the authors illustrate the polluting nature of the Soviet economy in the 1940s-1980s. We contend that from the very beginning, important as they were for the USSR, the enterprises of the Isthmus were built into a system of shortages of techniques and materials that contributed to the hectic fulfillment of the plan. Producing pulp and pulp-based products remained a priority during the whole Soviet period. On the level of industrial enterprises, the Soviet system revealed itself as incapable of solving the problem of pollution and wasting. After waste treatment facilities developed by Soviet engineers in the 1960s turned out to be inadequate for dealing with increasing pollution, the Soviet authorities called on Finnish companies to carry out substantial modernization of a few enterprises on the Isthmus. This helped the modernized plants remain functioning in the age of economic crisis at the end of the Soviet epoch. Old problems, however, such as shortages and lack of expertise, remained pivotal, while new sources of pollution, such as carbon emissions, appeared. As a result, the level of contamination was still high and led to negative environmental impacts.
The representation of electricity was a significant challenge because Soviet authors were to communicate the complex ‘scientific’ phenomenon to an unprepared audience. In my essay, I will explore how during the 1920s to the 1930s, Soviet authors experimented with the representation of the electricity in order to find an optimal proportion of fantasy and factual data for children’s books. A forthcoming publication within The Pedagogy of Images: Depicting Communism for Children, edited by Marina Balina and Serguei Oushakine.
the article is about the problem of feminism in the political discours (on the basis of interviews of women-politicans of Germany)