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By Derek Offord, William Leatherbarrow

The background of principles has performed a crucial function in Russia's political and social background. knowing its highbrow culture and how the intelligentsia have formed the state is essential to knowing the Russia of this present day. This new background examines vital highbrow and cultural currents (the Enlightenment, nationalism, nihilism, and spiritual revival) and key subject matters (conceptions of the West and East, the typical humans, and attitudes to capitalism and average technological know-how) in Russian highbrow background. targeting the Golden Age of Russian suggestion within the mid 19th century, the participants additionally glance again to its eighteenth-century origins within the flowering of tradition following the reign of Peter the good, and ahead to the ongoing energy of Russia's classical highbrow culture within the Soviet and post-Soviet eras. With short biographical information of over fifty key thinkers and an in depth bibliography, this e-book presents a clean, entire evaluate of Russian highbrow background.

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16 The Provisional Government abolished censorship altogether in April 1917, but in October the Bolsheviks made clear where they stood on the subject when they closed down opposition newspapers within two days of taking power. 17 Thus for most of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries Russian thinkers had to bear in mind the probable difficulty of finding outlets for their views. Admittedly, Russian regimes have not necessarily been hostile to education (which requires printed matter), and attempts to suppress publications sometimes have the effect of stimulating them.

Editors, however, could still be notified by the authorities that their newspapers were running the risk of being shut down (three warnings led to closure), and books could still be prosecuted after publication. 16 The Provisional Government abolished censorship altogether in April 1917, but in October the Bolsheviks made clear where they stood on the subject when they closed down opposition newspapers within two days of taking power. 17 Thus for most of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries Russian thinkers had to bear in mind the probable difficulty of finding outlets for their views.

In the sixteenth century, its principal connotation was independence from an external overlord. When Catherine the Great stated, in her instructions to the Legislative Commission of 1767–8, that ‘[t]he sovereign is autocratic [samoderzhavnyi]’,7 she probably meant only that she did not have to defer to any institutions below the throne. 8 Nonetheless, after their final escape from Mongol tutelage towards the end of the fifteenth century Russia’s rulers gave many indications that they would not willingly accept any further checks on their power.

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