Alexander III: a pogrom-maker? : capability and culpability in Russian society, 1881-1894.

Lea. Mian, Natasha
(1995) Alexander III: a pogrom-maker? : capability and culpability in Russian society, 1881-1894. PhD thesis, University of Liverpool.

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This thesis intends to show that pogroms in the reign of Alexander III were neither encouraged nor instigated by the government. While other historians have demonstrated why the government could not have been involved in a pogrom policy, a thesis to which the author adds new primary source materials, it is possible to go one step further with new information emerging on alternative origins and reasons for the pogroms. It is argued that there was independent anti-Jewish action among the peasantry that clearly shows their capability for self-motivation and organisation. Chapters 1 and 2 review the literature on the Russian peasantry, the nature of the autocracy, the tensions within Russian society and the role of the Jewish population within the Russian Empire until the 1880s. These are the areas on which the crux of the thesis rests. Chapter 3 re-examines the period 1881-1894 in more detail in an effort to understand more clearly Jewish and Russian social perceptions of the pogroms, and how this has led to misconceptions among historians. Chapter 4 looks more closely at the government policy on the Jewish Question, using new data that allows research to take into account the real feelings and concerns that were expressed at the highest levels of government. Chapter 5 considers the same unofficial and frank source of documentation but at lower levels, i. e. police and local officials. From these police reports, comes the factual evidence of the existence of peasant leadership, organisation and movements against authority, and more specifically against Jews. Chapter 6 concludes that by 1881, the autocracy did not control or understand Russian or Jewish society, and it was during the next thirteen years that this became evident. The re-evaluation of available data only serves to show that the pogroms were a clear illustration of this fact.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Depositing User: Symplectic Admin
Date Deposited: 23 Oct 2023 09:57
Last Modified: 23 Oct 2023 10:04
DOI: 10.17638/03175859
Copyright Statement: Copyright © and Moral Rights for this thesis and any accompanying data (where applicable) are retained by the author and/or other copyright owners. A copy can be downloaded for personal non-commercial research or study, without prior permission or charge.