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Grant number: FA-232827-16

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FA-232827-16

Willard Sunderland
University of Cincinnati (Cincinnati, OH 45220-2872)

Russia and the World in the Age of Peter the Great

The completion of a book on the Eurasian dimensions of the Russian Empire during the reign of Peter the Great from 1696 to 1725.

Westernization is one of the supposedly settled questions of Russian history. According to the standard interpretation, old Muscovy was isolated and backward until Peter the Great (r.1696-1725) changed everything by turning the country towards Europe, leading in time to a dramatic reordering of Russian society, culture, and governance. My study offers an original reinterpretation of this critical moment of the Russian past. Rather than the turn to Europe, I argue that the great development of Peter's time was a new and wide-ranging engagement with the world, specifically with the societies of Eurasia and the Northern Pacific, all of which was profoundly influenced by the country's complexity as a sprawling, multiethnic empire. My contention is that it was this worldly transformation rather than westernization proper that ultimately had the greatest impact on Russia's modern experience.

Project fields:
History, General; Russian History

Program:
Fellowships for University Teachers

Division:
Research Programs

Total amounts:
$50,400 (approved)
$50,400 (awarded)

Grant period:
8/1/2016 – 7/31/2017