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Slavophile Empire
Author: Laura Engelstein

ISBN: 9780801475924
Format: Paperback
Number Of Pages: 256
Published: 16 September 2009
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 23.5 x 15.6 x 1.91
Description:
Twentieth-century Russia, in all its political incarnations, lacked the basic features of the Western liberal model: the rule of law, civil society, and an uncensored public sphere. In Slavophile Empire, the leading historian Laura Engelstein pays particular attention to the Slavophiles and their heirs, whose aversion to the secular individualism of the West and embrace of an idealized version of the native past established a pattern of thinking that had an enduring impact on Russian political life. Imperial Russia did not lack for partisans of Western-style liberalism, but they were outnumbered, to the right and to the left, by those who favored illiberal options. In the books rigorously argued chapters, Engelstein asks how Russias identity as a cultural nation at the core of an imperial state came to be defined in terms of this antiliberal consensus. She examines debates on religion and secularism, on the role of culture and the law under a traditional regime presiding over a modernizing society, on the status of the empires ethnic peripheries, and on the spirit needed to mobilize a multinational empire in times of war. These debates, she argues, did not predetermine...

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