A Russian Merchant's Tale
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A Russian Merchant's Tale : The Life and Adventures of Ivan Alekseevich Tolchenov, Based on His Diary

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Description

Based on the rare diary of an 18th-century Russian provincial merchant, A Russian Merchant's Tale presents a revealing portrait of Russia's little-known commercial class. By recording his daily contacts with a wide array of individuals from lords to laborers for more than 40 years, Ivan Alekseevich Tolchenov opened a window onto the education, work, birth, death, marriage, business, civic, holiday, and religious practices of a social group about which little has been known. Using the tools of microhistory to interpret the diary, David L. Ransel vividly brings to life Tolchenov's self-construction, his relations with family and society, and his entire world of aspirations, achievements, and failures. Challenging prevailing stereotypes of Russian merchants as tradition-bound and narrow-minded, A Russian Merchant's Tale offers important new insights into the social history of imperial Russia.show more

Product details

  • Paperback | 352 pages
  • 154.94 x 228.6 x 27.94mm | 589.67g
  • Indiana University Press
  • Bloomington, IN, United States
  • English
  • 15 b&w photos, 5 maps
  • 0253220203
  • 9780253220202

Review quote

"Tolchenov's Journal has found a fluid interpreter in David L. Ransel, whose patient, knowing analysis illuminates the many gems the diary has to offer.... [This book] portrays with unique breadth the middling, provincial world of Russia's widely scattered townsfolk.... Ransel's close study will bear repeated reading and help historians visualize the world of eighteenth-century Russia across many dimensions." -John Randolph, University of Illinois, Urbana?Champaign, American Historical Review, Vol. 115 Feb. 2010 "Tolchenov's Journal has found a fluid interpreter in David L. Ransel, whose patient, knowing analysis illuminates the many gems the diary has to offer.... [This book] portrays with unique breadth the middling, provincial world of Russia's widely scattered townsfolk.... Ransel's close study will bear repeated reading and help historians visualize the world of eighteenth-century Russia across many dimensions." -John Randolph, University of Illinois, Urbana?Champaign, American Historical Review, Vol. 115 Feb. 2010 -- John Randolph, University of Illinois, Urbana?Champaign * American Historical Review *show more

About David L. Ransel

David L. Ransel is Robert F. Byrnes Professor of History and Director of the Russian and East European Institute at Indiana University, Bloomington. He is author of Village Mothers: Three Generations of Change in Russia and Tataria (IUP, 2005) and editor (with Jane Burbank) of Imperial Russia: New Histories for the Empire (IUP, 1998).show more

Table of contents

ContentsAcknowledgmentsIntroductionMaps1. The Setting, Education, Youth, and Marriage2. Local Politics during Ivan's Youth3. Junior Member of the Family Firm: Merchant Life in Dmitrov4. Young Paterfamilias5. Leading Citizen6. Eminent Trickster7. Moscow Townsman8. A New EquilibriumConclusionAppendix: Genealogical Table for the Family of Boris TolchenovNotesBibliographyIndexshow more

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