Treatment of the notion of «Russians» and Russian conservative thought (1860–1917) Cover Image

Трактовка понятия «русские» в российской консервативной мысли (1860-е – 1917 гг.)
Treatment of the notion of «Russians» and Russian conservative thought (1860–1917)

Author(s): Andrey Aleksandrovich Ivanov
Subject(s): Recent History (1900 till today), Nationalism Studies, 19th Century, Ethnic Minorities Studies
Published by: Издательство Исторического факультета СПбГУ
Keywords: Russian; Russian people; Russian conservatism; Russian nationalism;

Summary/Abstract: The article analyzes and researches into the views of Russian conservators and nationalists of the second half of the 19th – the early 20th century on one of the most important aspects of the national question — «Russian question». The author attempts to characterize the ideas of the most prominent representatives of the pre-revolutionary conservative camp (M. N. Katkov, K. N. Leontiev, A. A. Kireev, V. M. Purishkevich, N. E. Markov, M. O. Menshikov etc.) about criteria of the notion of «Russians» and its content. Based on many sources, particularly under-reported publications in the pre-revolutionary press as well as studies of the foremost present-day academic specialists in the Russian conservatism and nationalism, the author provides a variety of opinions on the notion of «Russians» existed in Russia in the late-imperial period. The author proves that the representatives of the conservative camp, though not having a unified position about boundaries of the notion of «Russians», by and large were alien to the primitive ethnic nationalism. The notion of «Russians» was never limited to the concept of «Great Russians», but by absorbing it, was comprised of a significant number of subjects of the Russian Empire who identified themselves with the Russian culture. Even those among Russian conservators and nationalists who restricted the right of affiliation with Russian people only by Great Russians, Little Russians and Belarusians, did not deny the possibility of widening the criteria of the notion of «Russians» for account of the representatives of other ethnic groups who blended into Russians. Therefore, even within the most narrow interpretations of the notion of «Russians» the conservators of the second half of the 19th – the early 20th century never reduced it to the principles of ethnic purity, blood ties or racial-biological criterion, alien to the orthodox tradition.

  • Issue Year: 22/2017
  • Issue No: 2
  • Page Range: 40-50
  • Page Count: 11
  • Language: Russian