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The Enigmatic Tsar and His Empire

Russia under Alexander I. 1801–1825

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Edited By Jan Kusber, Alexander Kaplunovskiy and Benjamin Conrad

In many ways Russia under Alexander I was an epoch of exploration and revision of empire and state-building. The authors of this volume explore the Alexandrine-era Russia not from the traditional vantage point of the emperor and his inner circle but from the point of view of experts and elites. These «men on the spot» drafted «maps» of the empire and its collective subjects and constructed social, political, and economic imaginaries of the empire. All these revisions and projects did not necessarily lead to an immediate and consistent (re)organization of the political, social, and cultural structures of imperial space. The Alexandrine Russia may be interpreted much more as a «laboratory» in which different potential scenarios for modernization were designed, discussed, and tested—but also rejected and forgotten.

Alexander Kaplunovsky is Research Associate at the Department for Eastern European History, Johannes-Gutenberg-University at Mainz, Germany.

Jan Kusber is Professor and Chair of the Department for Eastern European History, Johannes-Gutenberg-University at Mainz, Germany.

Benjamin Conrad is Teaching Coordinator at the Department of History, Humboldt-University, Berlin, Germany.