Russia: A History, New Edition

Paperback | March 1, 2002

EditorGregory Freeze

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From the formation of the Russian state in the 14th century to the political power struggles of the 1990s and the uncertainties of the new millennium, this new history offers a fresh and systematic account of Russian history across six tumultuous centuries. With greater access to previouslyunobtainable material, and with the gradual depoliticization of what was once an intellectual Cold War battleground, historians are now able to tell the story of Russia more dispassionately and with greater precision than was formerly possible. Drawing on the best contemporary scholarship, andinformed throughout by the latest archival research into previously classified sources, thirteen international experts here reassess and reinterpret the history of one of the world's great powers.What emerges is a powerful sense of national destiny - of repeated themes, unchanging conditions, and cycles of circumstance. Throughout Russian history, all-powerful autocrats like Ivan the Terrible or Stalin have maintained their authority through brutality; but their omnipotence was always underthreat, circumscribed by geography, compromised by bureaucratic incompetence, pervasive corruption, and resistance from below. A curious combination - a veneer of omnipotence, a void of operational power - has periodically dissolved into 'times of trouble', as in 1598, 1917, and 1991, when theimpotence of the regime became transparent to all.Russian rulers have also had to contend with the same immense physical challenges - a hugely dispersed population, a perennial dearth of means and men to govern, a primitive infrastructure. Plagued by natural disasters, hamstrung by structural problems, the Russian economy - whetherpre-revolutionary capitalist, Soviet socialist, or post-Soviet semi-capitalist - has had enormous and disruptive difficulties adapting to the competitive world of international markets. Another immutable, elemental fact has been Russia's multinational composition, which continues to generatediscontent and disorder. Yet Russia is a great survivor, as the years from 1995 show, charaterized by economic recovery, institution-building, and a new mood of self-assertion in world politics. For too long Russian history has been dominated by myths and counter-myths, concocted by those seeking either to legitimize the existing order or to destroy it. This book - containing many little-known illustrations - represents an important attempt to rethink Russian history and to provide a newunderstanding of Russia's complex but ever-fascinating historical development. A compelling story in its own right, it is also essential reading for anyone with a private or professional interest in Russia and its place in the world.

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From the formation of the Russian state in the 14th century to the political power struggles of the 1990s and the uncertainties of the new millennium, this new history offers a fresh and systematic account of Russian history across six tumultuous centuries. With greater access to previouslyunobtainable material, and with the gradual de...

Gregory Freeze is Professor of History at Brandeis University. He has also been a research associate of the Davis Center for Russian Studies at Harvard University since 1972 and is chief editor and director of the Russian Archive series, which publishes new inventories of recently declassified archival collections. He has spent over 1...

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Format:PaperbackPublished:March 1, 2002Publisher:Oxford University PressLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0198605110

ISBN - 13:9780198605119

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Table of Contents

List of Colour PlatesList of MapsEditor's PrefaceList of ContributorsGlossary of Terms, Abbreviations and AcronymsNote on Transliteration and Dates1. Janet Martin: From Kiev to Muscovy: The Beginnings to 14502. Nancy Shields Kollmann: Muscovite Russia, 1450-15983. Hans-Joaachim Torke: From Muscovy towards St Petersburg, 1598-16894. John T. Alexander: The Petrine Era and After, 1682-17405. Gary Marker: The Age of Enlightenment, 1740-18016. David L. Ransel: Pre-Reform Russia, 1801-18557. Gregory L. Freeze: Reform and Counter-Reform, 1855-18908. Reginald E. Zelnik: Revolutionary Russia, 1890-19149. Daniel T. Orlovsky: Russia in War and Revolution, 1914-2110. William B. Husband: The New Economic Policy (NEP) and the Revolutionary Experiment, 1921-192911. Lewis Siegelbaum: Building Stalinism, 1929-194112. William C. Fuller, Jr.: The Great Fatherland, War, and Late Stalinism, 1941-195313. Gregory L. Freeze: From Stalinism to Stagnation, 1953-198514. Martin McCauley: From Perestroika towards a New Order, 1985-9515. Gregory L. Freeze: Meltdown, Rebuilding, Reform, 1996-2001MapsChronologyFurther ReadingIndex

Editorial Reviews

`a lavishly illustrated volume, with a heavy-weight text'Edward Acton, The European