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236 letters in canada 2002 university of toronto quarterly, volume 73, number 1, winter 2003/4 Il=minskii system became a model for non-Russian education elsewhere in the empire and was supported by the powerful minister of education, D.A. Tolstoi, and the tsar, Alexander II, himself. Dowler demonstrates the deeply conservative impulse behind the system, while appreciating that in many ways promoting native languages worked to enhance the diverse cultures of the empire. Here, despite the russifying intentions of its advocates, was a practical, if ultimately flawed, way of managing a multinational country and securing a degree of integration. The author points out the parallels to Lenin=s later strategy of supporting cultural and linguistic differentiation, while prohibiting political nationalism. Ultimately Il=minskii=s innovations met resistance both from Muslim modernizers, like the Jadids, who favoured a unifying Islamic language and identity, and Russian chauvinists, who opposed concessions to native-language learning. Almost all major Russian imperial actors favoured assimilation of non-Russians. What they differed over was the most practical and least painful way to achieve a single Russian >nation.= Dowler uses the term >nationalism= loosely to describe a number of different phenomena, from a kind of cultural awareness or national selfconsciousness to the racial chauvinism of late nineteenth-century Russian rightists. What is clear is that none of the eastern peoples had a fully developed political program of separation and statehood. Rather than political nationalism, the Muslim intelligentsias of the Volga and Central Asia adopted modernizing strategies to blend Islamic values with Western knowledge in the hope that they would be able to flourish in a more tolerant empire. But to the very end of the imperial regime, influential Russians looked upon Muslims as inferior peoples to be cultivated, perhaps converted, who at the same time presented a potential internal danger to the Christian world. The tropes of alterity of Il=minskii=s day, the language of inferiority and difference, that made empire possible and justified the rule of one people over others have had a very long shelf-life and remain current in our own time. (RONALD GRIGOR SUNY) Margaret Derry. Ontario=s Cattle Kingdom: Purebred Breeders and Their World, 1870B1920 University of Toronto Press, 2001. xv, 222. $50.00 Not a great deal of scholarly work has dealt with the historical development of the Canadian cattle industry. Within this narrow context, the purebred sector has received even shorter shrift. If for no other reason, Margaret Derry=s account of the purebred cattle industry in Ontario is a welcome contribution to a largely neglected field. Derry sees purebred breeding as focusing on the biological capability of cattle to produce a desired product. Her arguments address the strategies, processes, successes, and problems humanities 237 university of toronto quarterly, volume 73, number 1, winter 2003/4 associated with this quest. Derry=s account follows a thematic framework. After integrating Ontario into the wider national and international agricultural context, she discusses the emergence of the purebred breeders in the province, and the development of the regulations that defined and guided their operations. She then analyses the impact of the purebred breeders on the beef and dairy industries , and discusses the relationship between live cattle operations and the meat business. Derry ends her account by placing purebred breeders in a modern context. The book offers a balanced analysis of the overall influence of the purebred breeders. Derry argues strongly that they heavily influenced the national beef and dairy cattle industries. Purebred breeding in Ontario began in response to market opportunities in the Unites States, and, through time, continued to be a major influence on Midwest American breeding practices. The purebred groups, whether elitist-amateur, farmer-expert, or specialized farmer, all contributed to the development of breeding by importing pedigree animals, presenting a powerful lobby to government, and supplying quality stock to the farming communities across the country. Derry observes that purebred breeders saw their work as of great national importance. She goes further by arguing that financial rewards were secondary to the need to produce quality purebred stock for the nation. Derry also shows another side of purebred breeding development. In a fascinating discussion, she documents the various obsessions...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1712-5278
Print ISSN
0042-0247
Pages
pp. 236-238
Launched on MUSE
2014-07-02
Open Access
No
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