III Congreso Internacional Historia a Debate Santiago de Compostela

III Congreso Internacional Historia a Debate
Santiago de Compostela, 14-18 de julio de 2004


Prof. Christopher Read

Staff Contact Information

Room 323

Telephone 02476 523308

Email [email protected]

[]Academic Profile

Current Appointment Reader in Twentieth-Century European History

University of Keele. B.A.

University of Glasgow M.Phil. in Soviet Studies

London School of Economics. Ph.D. (Econ)

Fellow of the Royal Historical Society


1973 Appointed Lecturer in Twentieth Century European History,

History Department, University of Warwick

1991 Promoted to Senior Lecturer

1997 Promoted to Readership

Undergraduate Modules Taught Course Director Making of the Modern World (HI153)

History of Russia since 1881 (HI107)

The Russian Revolution 1914-1921 (HI317) Postgraduate Modules Taught Culture and Power in Russia since 1861 (Details)

Term One Core Course in MA in Culture and Society in the Cold War (Details) Selected Publications

Religion, Revolution and The Russian Intelligentsia (London, Macmillan, 1979) 221pp.

Culture and Power in Revolutionary Russia (London, Macmillan, 1990) 266pp

From Tsar to Soviets the Russian People and their Revolution (London, UCL Press; New York, Oxford University Press, 1996) 336pp.

The Making and Breaking of the Soviet System an Interpretation. (Basingstoke and New York, Palgrave, 2001) 259pp

The Stalin Years A Reader (Basingstoke and New York, Palgrave, 2002)

[]Research My research activity has followed two closely related themes. The main one is the intellectual history of the Russian intelligentsia in the crucial years between 1900 and 1925. In association with this I have also pursued an interest in the social history of the Russian Revolution.

The bulk of my original archival and primary research has been on the former topic. In connection with it I have produced two monographs and a number of articles.

My first monograph was published in 1979 and was a detailed account of the political, social and religious thought of the Russian intelligentsia on the eve of the First World War. The main argument of my second monograph, which took the history of the intelligentsia in a broader socio-political as well as intellectual context, was that the 1920s in the Soviet Union was not so much a period of toleration of intellectual dissent - as proposed by a whole range of 'revisionist' historians - but was really a period of steadily growing intellectual repression. I have also produced an article of 4000 words on 'Bolshevik Cultural Policy' which was published in 1997 in Edward Acton and William Rosenberg (eds) A Critical Dictionary of the Russian Revolution.

The second theme of my research, the social history of the Russian Revolution, has been the subject of several articles and papers and, pre-eminently, of my third book, published in early 1996. The main argument here has been that the struggle between the Bolsheviks and the self-generating popular revolution of peasants, workers and, above all, soldiers and sailors in 1917 and after has been overlooked and was more decisive in shaping the institutions and attitudes of the Soviet government than the more widely studied struggle against the remnants of the former lite gathered in and around the White armies. My interpretation balances the power of the popular movement against the strongly prescriptive assumptions of the Bolsheviks, arguing that the tragedy of the Russian Revolution arose from the fact that the Bolsheviks were driven above all by their 'culture' - especially ideology - into destroying the 'real' revolution conducted by the population. From this arose many of the characteristics of 'Stalinism' which finally brought the system down seventy years later. This theme, the general social and political evolution of Soviet Russia, is at the heart of a volume that takes my argument into the period of the thirties and the Second World War. It involves mainly re-assessing Stalin in the light of new archival evidence and the raging debate about him of the last ten years. In addition, the breakdown and collapse of the system is considered. This volume was published at the beginning of June 2001 Recent Research Topics Supervised (PhD, MA)

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