Nineteenth-century Russian intellectuals were faced with a dilemma. They had to choose between modernizing their country, thus imitating the West, or reaffirming what was perceived as their country's own values and thereby risk remaining socially underdeveloped and unable to compete with Western powers. Scholars have argued that this led to the emergence of an anti-Western, anti-modern ethnic nationalism. In this innovative book, Susanna Rabow-Edling shows that there was another solution to the conflicting agendas of modernization and cultural authenticity – a Russian liberal nationalism. This nationalism took various forms during the long nineteenth century, but aimed to promote reforms through a combination of liberalism, nationalism and imperialism.

chapter |17 pages


chapter 1|20 pages

The civic concept of the nation

chapter 2|21 pages

Republican nationalism

chapter 3|25 pages

Modernization and cultural authenticity

chapter 5|21 pages

Liberal imperialism

chapter 6|9 pages