Spring 2019

Living the Revolutionary Utopia: Reconfiguring the Russian Empire as the Soviet Union, 1917–1920s

Listed in: History, as HIST-445  |  Russian, as RUSS-345


Sergey Glebov (Section 01)


(Offered as HIST 445 [EU] and RUSS 345) The Russian Revolution of 1917 was the end of the dynastic imperial regime and the onset of the new, unprecedented attempt to create a utopian society of universal equality and justice. It was also the beginning of the bloody and brutal Civil War and foreign intervention. Yet the Russian Revolution as a modernist project of remaking the social order and human nature had a much longer history as it developed since the nineteenth century in politics, science, literature, and arts. Following the Revolution, the Bolshevik reordering of state, society and empire developed along with and conflicted with the futuristic project of global transformation of the old world. What Soviet life would look like and how the Soviet multiethnic empire should be built became highly contested projects. This seminar introduces students to the new research into the elaboration, implementation, domestication, taming, or overcoming of revolutionary utopianism and futurism. Studying secondary and primary sources, we will explore how people created new forms of life, moral, knowledge, gender order, postcolonial arrangements, and new state institutions. Students will produce a research paper based on primary sources, including those at the Amherst Center for Russian Culture. One class meeting per week.

Limited to 18 students. Not open to first-year students. Spring semester. Five College Professor Glebov.

HIST 445 - L/D

Section 01
Th 02:30 PM - 05:00 PM CHAP 103


2024-25: Not offered
Other years: Offered in Fall 2017, Spring 2019