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University of Toronto Press - Spring/Summer 2020

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War and Enlightenment in Russia
Military Culture in the Age of Catherine II
By (author): Eugene Miakinkov
9781487503543 Hardcover English Higher Education HISTORY / Russia & the Former Soviet Union Jun 16, 2020
$75.00 CAD
Active 6.25 x 9.25 x 1.05 in | 640 gr 336 pages University of Toronto Press, Scholarly Publishing Division

War and Enlightenment in Russia explores how members of the military during the reign of Catherine II reconciled Enlightenment ideas about the equality and moral worth of all humans with the Russian reality based on serfdom, a world governed by autocracy, absolute respect for authority, and subordination to seniority.

While there is a sizable literature about the impact of the Enlightenment on government, economy, manners, and literature in Russia, no analytical framework that outlines its impact on the military exists. Eugene Miakinkov’s research addresses this gap and challenges the assumption that the military was an unadaptable and vertical institution. Using archival sources, military manuals, essays, memoirs, and letters, the author demonstrates how the Russian militaires philosophes operationalized the Enlightenment by turning thought into reality.

Eugene Miakinkov is a lecturer in the Department of Political and Cultural Studies at Swansea University.

"War and Enlightenment in Russia expands the field of Russian cultural and intellectual history investigating a significant amount of unpublished documents. Eugene Miakinkov creates a multifaceted portrayal of the Russian military, from the training and promotion of lower-ranking officers to the performance of leadership responsibilities."

- Brian Davies, Department of History, University of Texas at San Antonio

"War and Enlightenment in Russia is based on an impressive range of primary sources and will appeal to a wide scholarly readership on European history. It will be of interest not only to Russian history specialists but also to historians of the armed forces, of the nobility, and of the culture of eighteenth-century Europe."

- Janet Hartley, Department of International History, London School of Economics and Political Science

"War and Enlightenment in Russia expands the field of Russian cultural and intellectual history investigating a significant amount of unpublished documents from St. Petersburg’s National Library, the State Archive of Ancient Documents, and the State Military Archive. Eugene Miakinkov creates a multifaceted portrayal of the Russian military, from the training and promotion of lower-ranking officers to the performance of leadership responsibilities."

- Colum Leckey, Department of History, Piedmont Virginia Community College

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