The Imperial Russian Project: Autocratic Politics, Economic Development, and Social Fragmentation

By Alfred J. Rieber
Foreword by Yanni Kotsonis

© 2017

A pioneer in the field of Russian and Soviet studies in the West, Alfred J. Rieber’s five decade career has focused on increasing our understanding of the Russian Empire from Peter the Great to the coming of the First World War.

The Imperial Russian Project is a collection of Rieber’s lifetime of work, focusing on three interconnected themes of this time period: the role of reform in the process of state building, the interaction of state and social movements, and alternative visions of economic development. This volume contains Rieber’s previously published, classic essays, edited and updated, as well as newly written works that together provide a well-integrated framework for reflection on this topic. Rieber argues that Russia’s style of autocratic governance not only reflected the personalities of the rulers but also the challenges of overcoming economic backwardness in a society lacking common citizenship and a cohesive ruling class. The Imperial Russian Project reveals how during the nineteenth century the tsar was obliged to operate within a changing and more complex world, reducing his options and restricting his freedom of action.

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Product Details

  • Division: Scholarly Publishing
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 528 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 1.0in x 9.0in
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Quick Overview

The Imperial Russian Project is a collection of Rieber’s lifetime of work, focusing on three interconnected themes of this time period: the role of reform in the process of state building, the interaction of state and social movements, and alternative visions of economic development.

The Imperial Russian Project: Autocratic Politics, Economic Development, and Social Fragmentation

By Alfred J. Rieber
Foreword by Yanni Kotsonis

© 2017

A pioneer in the field of Russian and Soviet studies in the West, Alfred J. Rieber’s five decade career has focused on increasing our understanding of the Russian Empire from Peter the Great to the coming of the First World War.

The Imperial Russian Project is a collection of Rieber’s lifetime of work, focusing on three interconnected themes of this time period: the role of reform in the process of state building, the interaction of state and social movements, and alternative visions of economic development. This volume contains Rieber’s previously published, classic essays, edited and updated, as well as newly written works that together provide a well-integrated framework for reflection on this topic. Rieber argues that Russia’s style of autocratic governance not only reflected the personalities of the rulers but also the challenges of overcoming economic backwardness in a society lacking common citizenship and a cohesive ruling class. The Imperial Russian Project reveals how during the nineteenth century the tsar was obliged to operate within a changing and more complex world, reducing his options and restricting his freedom of action.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • Division: Scholarly Publishing
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 528 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 1.0in x 9.0in
  • Reviews

    "Alfred Rieber’s collected volume is a work of profound scholarship, impressive acumen, and sweeping erudition. All the essays included in it address major and highly debatable issues of the history of imperial Russia."


    Mikhail Dolbilov, associate professor of History, University of Maryland
  • Author Information

    Alfred J. Rieber is a premier historian of Russia and the Soviet Union. He is University Professor Emeritus at Central European University in Budapest, Hungary and professor emeritus at the University of Pennsylvania.


    Yanni Kotsonis is an associate professor in the Departments of History and of Russian and Slavic Studies and founding Director of the Jordan Center for the Advanced Study of Russia at New York University.
  • Table of contents

    PART ONE: THE FOUNDATIONS

    1. The Petrine Vision and Its Fate

    PART TWO: CULTURAL TRANSFER, INTEREST GROUPS AND ECONOMIC GROWTH

    2. The Aufklärung in Russia
    3. The Biogenetic Model
    4. The Moscow Entrepreneurial Group
    5. The Engineers
    6. The Economists
    7. Origin of the Reutern System
    8. The Reutern System in Operation
    9. Patronage and Professionalism

    PART THREE: SOCIAL STRUCTURES IN A DIVIDED POLITY

    10. The Social Identification of the Nobility
    11. The Sedimentary Society
    12. Social and Political Fragmentation