From the Carpathians in the west to the Greater Khingan range in the east, a huge, flat expanse dominates the Eurasian continent. Here, over more than a thousand years, the history and destiny of Russia have unfolded. In a sweeping narrative, one of the English-speaking world's leading historians of Russia follows this story from the first emergence of the Slavs in the historical record in the sixth century C.E. to the Russians' persistent appearances in today's headlines. Hosking's is a monumental story of competing legacies, of an enormous power uneasily balanced between the ideas and realities of Asian empire, European culture, and Byzantine religion; of a constantly shifting identity, from Kievan Rus to Muscovy to Russian Empire to Soviet Union to Russian Federation, and of Tsars and leaders struggling to articulate that identity over the centuries.
With particular attention to non-Russian regions and ethnic groups and to Russia's relations with neighboring polities, Hosking lays out the links between political, economic, social, and cultural phenomena that have made Russia what it is--a world at once familiar and mysterious to Western observers. In a clear and engaging style, he conducts us through the Mongol invasions, the rise of autocracy, the reigns of Ivan the Terrible and Peter the Great, the battle against Napoleon, the emancipation of the serfs, the Crimean War, the Bolshevik Revolution, Stalin's reign of terror, the two World Wars, the end of the USSR, to today's war against Chechnya. Hosking's history is shot through with the understanding that becoming an empire has prevented Russia from becoming a nation and has perpetuated archaic personal forms of power. This book is the most penetrating and comprehensive account yet of what such a legacy has meant--to Russia, and to the world.
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Geoffrey Hosking is retired Professor of Russian History at the University College London.Review:
A book intended for a general educated audience and students, a survey of the entire course of Russian history. Hosking is up on the current literature and is invariably judicious in dealing with historiographical controversies.
--Terence Emmons, Stanford University
Hosking's book has comprehensive sweep and a clear writing style. It is filled with judicious appraisals of a number of critical historical issues. A book of vast erudition written by an eminently qualified scholar, it is much-needed.
--Martin Miller, Duke University
Hosking...offers a comprehensive survey from the beginnings of Kievan Rus through Russia's recent independence, emphasizing the impact of relations between Russians and non-Russians...This book's strength lies in its revealing Russia's continuities. The result compares favorably with some of the best Russian histories of recent decades while also consolidating new scholarship. Highly recommended.
--Zachary Irwin (Library Journal 2001-04-01)
Russia's history, more than that of almost any other country, lends itself to passion and polemic...[Hosking] nevertheless attempts...a dispassionate account. Writing with enviable lucidity, he sets out to dispel the current negativeness and general ambivalence that characterizes both Western and native assessments of Russia's role in the world...His general argument is compelling.
--Ronald Grigor Suny (New Leader 2001-03-01)
For the thousand years of its recorded existence, Russia's history has been as dramatic, tragic, and inspiring as that of any nation, exerting a perennial attraction that cries for the one-volume introduction Hosking is well equipped to provide. His book is especially welcome because he links the Communist era, now that it is over, to the enduring themes of the Russian experience...This is a high-quality overview.
--Gilbert Taylor (Booklist 2001-04-15)
There...seems to be a general failure to understand Russians on their own terms--as people who, on one hand are no different than the foreigners trying to analyze them and, on the other hand, think and act in ways that baffle outsiders. In other words, Russians behave just like us, except when they don't. Those seeking answers to these mysteries will welcome Geoffrey Hosking's latest work, Russia and the Russians, a massive survey that begins with the Keivan Rus in the ninth century and ends with Vladimir Putin's arrival in the Kremlin in 2000. Mr. Hosking has made an important contribution to those seeking to better understand a country and its people.
--Ron Laurenzo (Washington Times 2001-05-22)
[A] comprehensive and intelligent survey of Russian history for the general reader...[that follows] the twists and turns of Slavic history from the principalities of Kievan Rus in the late ninth century to the presidency of Boris Yeltsin...[A] most excellent historical survey. (The Economist 2001-05-26)
Russia and the Russians...is a comprehensive and up-to-date textbook of Russian history...[Hosking] covers every aspect of Russia from the terrain itself, to the tsars, to Russian nationalism, to the Cold War, to Perestroika, to the Russian Federation--and he is thorough. Russia and the Russians is a book for the serious student of history.
--Freda Fuller Coursey (Times Record News 2001-09-09)
Hosking's narrative is so compellingly and gracefully written and so meticulously researched that the reader will find an abundance of treasure. While more valuable to the general reader than the specialist, the latter will still derive insight from the book. This quality is never better illustrated than in the introduction, where Hosking sets forth "the four salient characteristics" that have "imparted to Russia a paradoxical combination of colossal strength and almost crippling weakness." His treatment of the Nikonian reforms, social transformation and terror during Stalin's collectivization, and Gorbachev's perestroika are similarly stimulating...[Hosking's] insight and expertise provide a learning experience for all levels of reader.
--G. E. Snow (Choice 2001-12-01)
For the general reader, this book is the King James version of Russian history.
--Robert Legvold (Foreign Affairs 2001-05-01)
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Descripción Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2003. Paperback. Estado de conservación: New. book. Nº de ref. de la librería 0674011147