This book reflects the author's abiding scholarly quest to illustrate how elements of freedom and self-government play important roles in the history of nations, even during the darkest periods of their history.
Table of Contents
Foreword -- Introduction -- Ancient Rus -- The Muscovite State -- The Imperial Era -- Government Plans for Constitutional Reform in the Nineteenth Century -- Freedom and Revolution -- The Serfs’ Longing for Freedom -- The Peasant Mir in the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries -- Zemstvo and Urban Self-Government -- The Liberation Movement and the Revolution of 1905 -- The State Duma -- Cooperatives in Russia -- Light and Shadow in the Duma Monarchy -- Revolution and Civil War, 1917–1922
Sergei Germanovich Pushkarev (1888–1984) was born and educated in pre-revolutionary Russia. In 1907 he entered the historical/philological faculty of Khar'kov University. In 1910 he was arrested and expelled from the university for ties with the social-democratic party (mensheviks). After travels abroad that included studies at the universities of Heidelberg and Leipzig, he was reinstated in Khar'kov university in 1916 and soon became active in Edinstvo [Unity], the group of Marxist leader Georgii Plekhanov. The Bolshevik coup d'etat of November 1917 led Pushkarev to reassess his relationship to Marxism. When the White Armies opposing the Bolsheviks came to Khar'kov in June 1919, he joined as a volunteer and was wounded in battle. In November 1920 he was evacuated to Turkey with the army of General Wrangel'. In 1921 he arrived in Prague to work at the Russian Academic Collegium there, which was organized by the Czech government to assist Russian scholars fleeing from the October revolution. In 1924, under the direction of Professor I. I. Lappo, he received his first appointment as a privatdozent at the Free Russian University in Prague. Professor Pushkarev remained in Prague until 1945, working as a lecturer at the Free Russian University, and as a member of the Russian Historical Society and the Russian Historical Archive Abroad, then under the jurisdiction of the Czechoslovak Ministry of Foreign Affairs. During this period he authored numerous articles and brochures in Russian and Czech on the history of the Russian peasantry and on early Russian history. During the closing days of World War II his family survived a dramatic escape to the section of Germany occupied by the Western allies. For four years he and his family lived there in camps for â€œdisplaced persons,â€ where he organized schools for Russian children. In July 1949, at the invitation of Professor George Vernadsky, he came to New Haven, Connecticut to teach at Yale University. He remained at Yale the remainder of his professional life, authoring several works and hundreds of articles and reviews in English-language academic periodicals, predominantly Slavic Review and Russian Review. He was also a regular contributor to numerous emigre publications. His last book, Self-Government and Freedom in Russia, was published in Russian after his death, and reflects the author's abiding scholarly quest to illustrate how elements of freedom and self-government play important roles in the history of nations, even during the darkest periods of their history.