Although I didn't have any classes over the summer break and I did not do nearly as much reading as I wanted to or should have, I did not take the summer off entirely. Throughout the break between the Spring semester and the upcoming Fall semester, I've been accumulating multiple books, articles and research papers … Continue reading The Past: Alive.
When I say that I'm a history nerd, I mean it. I just finished my third term of Graduate school, and for the first time since I started my undergraduate classes in 2013, I'm facing a summer off from school and I'm already itching for my next project. I don't know what to do with … Continue reading Historical Reflections
The Military Revolution?
Michael Roberts’ Military Revolution thesis states that although the period between 1560 & 1660 is often overlooked by military historians, it is a period of profound significance on European history and “stands like a great divide separating mediaeval society from the modern world.” Roberts’ revolution centers on one primary innovation – one concerning tactics, that … Continue reading The Military Revolution?
The relationship between the Tsar and the peasantry of Russia was a complicated one, which hearkened back to medieval Europe yet survived until late in Romanov history. The overwhelming majority of Russians were peasants – between 80-90% - and were still peasants into the midst of the 20th century. One of the biggest challenges faced … Continue reading Russian Peasantry
Russian nobility, from before the foundation of the traditional “Russia” known today through the assassination of Tsar Nicholas II had a peculiar yet somewhat familiar relationship not only with the peasant class under them but to the Tsars above them. Initially, Russian elite saw themselves in much the same way that peasants saw the ruling … Continue reading Russian Nobility
According to tradition since the establishment of the Russian state, harmony between the tsar and his people was of utmost importance. The tsar was expected to be a strong and central leader while consulting and heeding the advice of his powerful, elite subjects – the boyars. In turn, the boyars were expected to serve and … Continue reading Russian Aristocracy
American Historiographical Trends
One of the most interesting thing I learned about history when I decided I wanted to go back to school in order to be a history major was that it was not at all what I thought it was when I suffered through it in high school. At younger ages, we’re given lists of names, … Continue reading American Historiographical Trends
After WWII ended and the Soviet regime was victorious, they quickly realized that they had a problem. Multitudes of former soldiers, refugees and citizens were no longer isolated from Western ideals or standards of living. For Stalin and Andrei Zhdanov, this was a problem that needed to be immediately addressed and corrected before Western influence … Continue reading Zhdanovism
Bodies and Souls
There is no comparable word for the middle class in the Russian language. The closest word that can come close to describing a middle class in post-World War II Russia is the term “meshchanstsvo.” Even in broad terms, this term does not equitably describe the soviet middle class, but it does describe many of their … Continue reading Bodies and Souls
Stalin’s Big Deal
In her pivotal work, historian Vera Dunham points out that after the war, Stalin and the party were faced with a decision – they could choose to honor the promises and concessions that they had granted to their people during the war in order to garner their support or to abandon it completely. Instead of … Continue reading Stalin’s Big Deal