Internal colonization by Aleksandr Ėtkind

Internal colonization by Aleksandr Ėtkind – russia’s imperial experience – is a great book which might appeal to both academics and the ones who are interested in russia’s cultural history. This book was recommended to me by my supervisor and it is indeed very useful for my research. It is very nice to read too, not dry at all, so this is why I think the book could have a wider appeal and not restricted to academia.

Internal colonization by Aleksandr Ėtkind

There are debates about russia’s imperial past, as in what makes russians imperialists to this day. Culture plays a big role in that, much more than in other countries, but because it differed from other kinds of imperialism, like British or French, it is less accepted and less understood. Etkind’s views are very interesting and intriguing.

The book covers topic such as the fur trade of the 18th and 19th centuries and makes the connections with the oil industry and views on how to manage and exploit resources today. He also looked extensively at the historiography surrounding russia’s colonialist past and the importance of literature in the process of colonization, including Tolstoy, Gogol, and Conrad.

Internal colonization by Aleksandr Ėtkind

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My rating: 4.5/5 Stars
Would I recommend it: yes
Published by: Polity
Year it was published: 2011
Format: Hardcover
Genre(s): History
Pages: 264

About the author: Alexander Etkind was born in Leningrad and moved to Cambridge, UK in 2005. He is now is a Professor in Russian Literature and Cultural History and Fellow of King’s College, Cambridge. Alexander has PhD in Psychology from Bekhterev Institute, Leningrad, and another in Slavonic Literatures from the University of Helsinki.
Before coming to the UK, he taught at the European University at St. Petersburg, with which he continues to collaborate. He was a visiting professor at New York University and Georgetown University, and a resident fellow at Harvard, Princeton, the Woodrow Wilson Center for International Scholars in Washington D.C., Wissenschaftskolleg in Berlin, and University of Canterbury in New Zealand.
His research interests are internal colonization in the Russian Empire, comparative studies of cultural memory, and the dynamics of the protest movement in russia. In 2010-2013, he is directing the European research project, Memory at War: Cultural Dynamics in Poland, russia, and Ukraine.
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