History | Empire of the Tsars
D308 | 9268 | Eklof


D308	Empire of the Tsars					EKLOF

This course examines the Russian Empire under the Romanov tsars, from
Catherine the Great to Nicholas II and World War I (1762-1917).
Students are introduced to basic events and themes in the country’s
political life, to the biographies of leading statesmen,
revolutionary men and women, and writers such as Chekhov, Tolstoy,
Dostoevsky (how their works depicted contemporary reality, but also
how their personal lives reflected the issues and ambiguities
plaguing Russian society).  Certain key events are treated in closer
detail: the Decembrist revolt, the Crimean War and Great Reforms, the
assassination and crisis of 1881, the Russo-Japanese War and the
Revolution of 1905 and World War I.

Attention is also given to policy dilemmas and ideologies:
liberalism, revolutionary socialism, conservatism, Panslavism and
anti-Semitism, and to changing relations between the state and
society, issues of empire, Russia as a Great Power in the modern
world, and the changing daily life of Russia’s diverse population
(its peasantry, factory work force, middle classes, and nobility).

Requirements:	(the mix changes from year to year, depending upon
size of class, thematic focus, and availability of books); weekly
written responses to readings, and 2-3 equally weighted exams.  The
exams consist of a series of short essays (20 minutes each) and
paragraph length identifications (based upon earlier quizzes).  The
final includes an hour-long thematic essay.

Readings for purchase: (I choose FROM this list each year)

Catherine the Great: A Short History, by Isabel DeMadariaga
(background)
Russia in the Age of Reform and Reaction, by David Saunders
A Sportsman’s Sketchbook, Ivan Turgenev
The Abolition of Serfdom, David Moon
Five Sisters:  Women Against the Tsar, B. Engel
A Radical Worker in Revolutionary Russia, Kanatchikov
Late Imperial Russia, 1890-1917, John F. Hutchinson