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Imperial Rule

Edited by Alexei Miller

Publication Year: 2004

Renowned academics compare major features of imperial rule in the 19th century, reflecting a significant shift away from nationalism and toward empires in the studies of state building. The book responds to the current interest in multi-unit formations, such as the European Union and the expanded outreach of the United States.

Published by: Central European University Press

Title Page, Copyright Page

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pp. 2-5


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pp. v-vi

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Introduction: Imperial Rule

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pp. 1-8

The present volume is the product of a project on the comparative history of empires launched in 2001at the Central European University.1 The individual contributions were originally presented in 2003 at an international conference in Moscow and revised in light of commentary and discussion during and after the conference. The project was designed as a contribution to the history of state building...


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pp. 7-15

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The Empire and the Nation in the Imagination of Russian Nationalism

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pp. 9-26

In 1885 the noted literary historian Aleksandr Pypin published an article in the European Herald (Vestnik Evropy), entitled “The Volga and Kiev.”1 He begins it by recounting a conversation he once had with Ivan Turgenev, known for his mastery of the literary treatment of nature. In the course of the conversation it becomes clear that Turgenev has never been on the Volga. For Pypin this serves as a...

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The Russians and the Turks: Imperialism and Nationalism in the Era of Empires

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pp. 27-46

Comparing Russia and Turkey might appear to be a far-fetched enterprise. The differences are obvious, even too obvious to be dwelt upon at any length. There is a problem as to definition—what was nationalism about— and there is a difficulty as regards effect and timing. Russian nationalism (as distinct from empire-loyalism) is a nineteenth-century creation and Turkish nationalism came into being...

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Imperial instead of National History: Positioning Modern German History on the Map of European Empires

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pp. 47-66

The initial inspiration for this article comes from recent models of empire.1 If one may combine Dominic Lieven’s and Alfred Rieber’s definitions of empire,it amounts to be “a very great power that has left its mark on the international relations of an era,”“a polity that rules over wide territories and many peoples ”which has left “a major impact on the history of world...


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pp. 67-75

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Justifying Political Power in 19th Century Europe: The Habsburg Monarchy and Beyond

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pp. 69-82

Two connected problems gave rise to the present essay.1 The first is that of the specific character of imperial legitimization. Did “empires” and “nation states” (however imprecise the division between them) try to justify their power in the same or in different ways? The second problem is that of specifically “modern” or “pre-modern”modes of legitimizing political power. We would probably tend to treat...

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Schism Once Removed: Sects, State Authority, and Meanings of Religious Toleration in Imperial Russia

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pp. 83-106

If Orthodoxy occupied an explicitly privileged place as the “preeminent and predominant” faith of the Russian Empire, the imperial state nonetheless forged important ties of co-operation with other confessions and its representatives. Indeed, the American historian Robert Crews has argued recently that the state in Russia served as a patron of recognized confessions, “committed to backing the construction...

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Redefining Identities in the Late Ottoman Empire: Policies of Conversion and Apostasy

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pp. 107-130

This chapter is an exercise in comparative history. It aims to put conversion and apostasy in the late 19th century Ottoman Empire in the context of world historiography. The chapter will compare the Ottoman and Russian Empires. My main focus will be perforce the Ottoman case, as the primary sources at my disposal are mostly Ottoman archival documentation. Nor do I claim in any way to be an expert in Russian history. I will therefore rely on secondary sources for my discussions of Russian...


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pp. 131-139

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Empire on Europe’s Periphery: Russian and Western Comparisons

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pp. 133-150

The aim of this paper is to compare Europe’s main empires on the continent’s western and eastern peripheries. Above all, this means a comparison between the Russian and British empires, though some reference is also made to Spain. In this paper I will make no reference to another useful comparison between empires of the European periphery, namely that between Russia and the Ottoman Empire...

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The Spanish Empire and its End: a Comparative View in Nineteenthand Twentieth Century Europe

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pp. 151-160

A striking feature of bibliography of the Spanish Empire and the consequences of imperial collapse in 1898 is its relatively high degree of self-absorption. This seems to mirror the international isolation of its dynastic elite at the time, reliant until the Spanish–American War on family and religious connections rather than on engagement in the system of international relations for the preservation of...

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The Russian-American Company as a Colonial Contractor for the Russian Empire

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pp. 161-176

The Russian–American Company (Rossiisko-Amerikanskaia kompaniia, also referred to here, for convenience’s sake, as the Company and the RAC) holds a crucial place in the history of Russia’s colonialism between its founding in 1799 and the transfer of Alaska to the United States in 1867. Literature on the formation of the RAC tends to stress its evolution from the merchant-run, Siberia...

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The Comparative Ecology of Complex Frontiers

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pp. 177-208

The advance and defense of frontiers has always played a central role in the destiny of continental, Eurasian conquest empires. Frontier maintenance absorbed large resources, influenced the evolution of imperial ideologies and institutions and largely defined relations with the external world. Attempts to consolidate and incorporate frontiers into the imperial body politic left a tripartite legacy to both the peoples and the nation states that emerged following the retreat and collapse...

List of Contributors

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pp. 209-210


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pp. 211-212

Back cover

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p. 220-220

E-ISBN-13: 9786155211140
Print-ISBN-13: 9789639241923

Page Count: 220
Publication Year: 2004

Edition: first