Analysis Of Romanov Russia As A Static Society Essay

Analysis Of Romanov Russia As A Static Society Essay

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Saunders’ assessment of Romanov Russia as a ‘static society’, a notion familiar to many Russian historical scholars, is perhaps narrow at best. Whilst the view of Russian society as slow and gradual cannot be ignored, the blatant transformation over the long term is evident if one compares many components of this Russian society between the fourteenth and nineteenth centuries. This essay seeks to define first what is meant by Russia’s status as a ‘static society’, and assess to what extent it fulfils such criterion. Nikolai Karamazin looks towards the autocracy and nobility as the forces for static, such that, if changed, they will “shake the stability of Russia itself” . If one is to place such a contemporary view at the forefront of this debate, little change or damage to the stability of Russia can be seen. Both structures remained, for the most part, in place for much of the history of Romanov Russia, indeed "By contrast, Russia 's absolutist system was to survive, with remarkably little reconstruction, into the twentieth century, outlasting all others in Europe." . This is, however, far too grandiose a view, and one must consider more minute factors of social and cultural changes, the influence of the West, and the stresses placed upon each successive Tsar not only by their elite-inner circle, but the sheer size of Russia itself and its many diverse cultural counterparts. Overall, one must consider both the structural and more minute, social aspects of society within Romanov Russia to truly understand Saunders’ assessment of Romanov Russia as a ‘static society’.

If one is to take an oppositional role towards Saunders’ assertion that Romanov Russia was a ‘static society’, one needs only to look towards the clear social and ...


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...iculturalists and professionals of all kinds, had the cumulative effect of breaching the walls of Russian isolationism” , and so one can see Romanov Russia as requiring simply an outside influence in order to breach its many hindrances. One, can, therefore overwhelmingly assess Romanov Russia as a transformative society in light of the Russian limitations preventing true, idealistic, Western change, as in Saunders’ assessment.

Overall, Saunders’ can be seen to be correct in his appraisal of Romanov Russia as a ‘static society’. The lack of any true, real progress towards a modern society, akin to that of Western Europe, is evident in an all-encompassing assessment of Russia under the Romanov dynasty, with any apparent changes being little more than superficial, and impeded by the demands of Russia as a whole, with regards to geography and diversity of its citizens.

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