Catalogue


The Russian moment in world history [electronic resource] /
Marshall T. Poe.
imprint
Princeton, NJ ; Woodstock : Princeton University Press, 2003.
description
xv,116 p. : maps.
ISBN
9780691126067
format(s)
Book
More Details
added author
imprint
Princeton, NJ ; Woodstock : Princeton University Press, 2003.
isbn
9780691126067
restrictions
Licensed for access by U. of T. users.
catalogue key
8846327
 
Includes bibliographical references and index.
A Look Inside
Excerpts
Flap Copy
"This unique, interesting, and stimulating book shoehorns the whole of Russian history into a single long essay, one that is argued very forcefully and written with remarkable clarity and verve."--Reginald Zelnik, University of California, Berkeley, author ofLaw and Disorder on the Narova River "This is a stimulating and timely essay, which, as intended, is provocative and potentially controversial at every turn."--Simon Franklin, Clare College, University of Cambridge, coauthor ofThe Emergence of Rus' 750-1200
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2004-04-01:
This slim volume offers a sweeping yet cogent and highly stimulating reinterpretation of the entire course of Russian history from the time of the earliest settlers in Russian lands to the collapse of the Soviet Union. While intended for general readers, the author's views are firmly grounded in recent scholarship. The main theme of the book is that Russia developed the only non-European path to modernity that succeeded in staving off European imperialism. Russia constructed a powerful state based on autocracy and a command economy from the 15th to the 18th centuries in order to defend itself against military incursions from the West. Former Harvard professor Poe argues that this period began the Russian moment in world history, which was remarkably successful despite the fact that the European model (based on limited government, capitalism, etc.) ultimately proved to be more productive and powerful. The Russian moment only ended in 1991, when the majority of Russians lost faith in their model and turned toward Europe. ^BSumming Up: Highly recommended. All readers and libraries. N. M. Brooks New Mexico State University
Reviews
Review Quotes
Condensing 1,400 years of history into 100 well-argued pages is a remarkable feat, one Poe accomplishes in terse but powerfully stated prose. . . . Poe effectively commits to his chosen path of navigation and distills his observations and vast knowledge into a clear and well-presented theory. The author deserves credit for taking on the gutsy task of re-educating that he sees as a misinformed public with humility intact, an achievement that is a testament to the purity of his intent.
Condensing 1,400 years of history into 100 well-argued pages is a remarkable feat, one Poe accomplishes in terse but powerfully stated prose. . . . Poe effectively commits to his chosen path of navigation and distills his observations and vast knowledge into a clear and well-presented theory. The author deserves credit for taking on the gutsy task of re-educating that he sees as a misinformed public with humility intact, an achievement that is a testament to the purity of his intent. -- Gabriella Gershenson, San Francisco Chronicle
If half a millennium of Russian history is to be distilled into a hundred pages of text, one has to have a strong thesis. Poe does. . . If those who disagree can offer a counterargument as compact, vigorous, and accessible as Poe's, the rest of us will greatly benefit.
If half a millennium of Russian history is to be distilled into a hundred pages of text, one has to have a strong thesis. Poe does. . . If those who disagree can offer a counterargument as compact, vigorous, and accessible as Poe's, the rest of us will greatly benefit. -- Foreign Affairs
Students will find Poe an able provocateur of debate.
Students will find Poe an able provocateur of debate. -- Booklist
The task of compressing the whole history of Russia into a hundred easy-to-read pages would be a hard challenge for any serious historian, but the proposition of building and testing in the same space an innovative concept of what Russia is about might seem beyond possible. This neat book by Poe, which many readers would find difficult to put down before turning the last page, is the tangible proof that such a task can indeed by accomplished--and with astounding ease.
The task of compressing the whole history of Russia into a hundred easy-to-read pages would be a hard challenge for any serious historian, but the proposition of building and testing in the same space an innovative concept of what Russia is about might seem beyond possible. This neat book by Poe, which many readers would find difficult to put down before turning the last page, is the tangible proof that such a task can indeed by accomplished--and with astounding ease. -- Pavel Baev, Journal of Peace Research
The thesis of this volume is that as late as the fifteenth century Russia was largely irrelevant to world history, that it became a noteworthy player in the sixteenth century, and that it remained so most of the time until 1991.
The thesis of this volume is that as late as the fifteenth century Russia was largely irrelevant to world history, that it became a noteworthy player in the sixteenth century, and that it remained so most of the time until 1991. -- Richard Hellie, Journal of Modern History
This slim volume offers a sweeping yet cogent and highly stimulating reinterpretation of the entire course of Russian history from the time of the earliest settlers in Russian lands to the collapse of the Soviet Union. While intended for general readers, the author's views are firmly grounded in recent scholarship.
This slim volume offers a sweeping yet cogent and highly stimulating reinterpretation of the entire course of Russian history from the time of the earliest settlers in Russian lands to the collapse of the Soviet Union. While intended for general readers, the author's views are firmly grounded in recent scholarship. -- Choice
This is a stimulating and timely essay, which, as intended, is provocative and potentially controversial at every turn.
This unique, interesting, and stimulating book shoehorns the whole of Russian history into a single long essay, one that is argued very forcefully and written with remarkable clarity and verve.
To find out how to look for other reviews, please see our guides to finding book reviews in the Sciences or Social Sciences and Humanities.
Summaries
Back Cover Copy
"This unique, interesting, and stimulating book shoehorns the whole of Russian history into a single long essay, one that is argued very forcefully and written with remarkable clarity and verve."--Reginald Zelnik, University of California, Berkeley, author of Law and Disorder on the Narova River "This is a stimulating and timely essay, which, as intended, is provocative and potentially controversial at every turn."--Simon Franklin, Clare College, University of Cambridge, coauthor of The Emergence of Rus' 750-1200
Bowker Data Service Summary
This is a brief, but complete interpretation of Russian history from its beginnings to the present day. The central argument is that Russia is the only non-Western power to successfully defend itself against Western imperialism, accomplished by building a powerful state that molded society to its military needs.
Main Description
Is Russian history one big inevitable failure? The Soviet Union's demise and Russia's ensuing troubles have led many to wonder. But this is to look through a skewed prism indeed. In this provocative and elegantly written short history of Russia, Marshall Poe takes us well beyond the Soviet haze deep into the nation's fascinating--not at all inevitable, and in key respects remarkably successful--past. Tracing Russia's course from its beginnings to the present day, Poe shows that Russia was the only non-Western power to defend itself against Western imperialism for centuries. It did so by building a powerful state that molded society to its military needs. Thus arose the only non-Western path to modern society--a unique path neither "European" nor "Asian" but, most aptly, "Russian." From the fifteenth to the eighteenth centuries, Russia prevailed despite unparalleled onslaughts by powerful Western armies. However, while Europe nurtured limited government, capitalism, and scientific and cultural revolution, early Russian society cultivated autocracy and command economics. Both Europe and Russia eventually created modern infrastructures, but the European model proved more productive and powerful. The post-World War I communist era can be seen as a natural continuation of Russia's autocratic past that, despite its tragic turns, kept Russia globally competitive for decades. The Russian moment in world history thus began with its first confrontations with Europe in the fifteenth century, and ended in 1991 with the Soviet collapse. Written with verve and great insight, The Russian Moment in World History will be widely read and vigorously debated by those who seek a clear and unequivocal understanding of the complex history that has made Russia what it is today.
Table of Contents
List of Mapsp. ix
Prefacep. xi
What Russia Is and What It Is Notp. 1
From Slavs to Rus'p. 10
From Rus' to Russiap. 28
The Challenge of Early Modernityp. 38
The Origins of the Russian Momentp. 46
The Progress of the Russian Momentp. 58
From Early Modernity to Modernityp. 71
The End of the Russian Momentp. 86
Coda: What Might Have Beenp. 91
Chronologyp. 105
Bibliographic Notep. 111
Indexp. 115
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

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