Russia Under the Old Regime

Front Cover
Scribner, 1974 - Russia - 360 pages
2 Reviews
The theme of this book is the poliltical system of Russia. It traces the growth of the Russian state from its beginnings in the ninth century to the end of the nineteenth, and the parallel development of the principal social orders: peasantry, nobility, middle class and clergy. The question which it poses is why in Russia -- unlike the rest of Europe to which Russia belongs by virtue of her location, race and religion -- society has proven unable to impose on political authority any kind of effective restraints. After suggesting some answers to this problem, I go on to show how in Russia the opposition to absolutism tended to assume the form of a struggle for ideals rather than for class interests, and how the imperial government, challenged in this manner, responded by devising administrative practices that clearly anticipate those of the modern police state. - Foreword.

From inside the book

What people are saying - Write a review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - motorbike - LibraryThing

This book is a good example of scientific historical analysis. Pipes starts with a debatable proposition and proceeds to identify and examine all the facts and relationships to support his proposition ... Read full review

Review: Russia Under the Old Regime

User Review  - Graham - Goodreads

Hard to deal with the conservative commentary, but once you do, this is actually a pretty good history. I would recommend this to anyone that is willing to read it critically. Read full review


The Genesis of the Patrimonial State in Russia
The Triumph of Patrimonialism
The Anatomy of the Patrimonial Regime

14 other sections not shown

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

References to this book

All Book Search results »

About the author (1974)

Richard Pipes was born Ryszard Edgar Pipes in Cieszyn, Poland on July 11, 1923. Soon after German troops entered Warsaw, he and his family fled to Italy on forged passports in 1939. They reached the United States a year later. He was attending Muskingum College in Ohio when he was drafted into the Army Air Corps in 1942. He was sent to study Russian at Cornell University. He received a bachelor's degree from Cornell in 1946 and a doctorate in history from Harvard University in 1950. His dissertation became the basis of his first book The Formation of the Soviet Union: Communism and Nationalism, 1917-1923. His other books included Struve: Liberal on the Left, 1870-1905; Struve: Liberal on the Right, 1905-1944; U.S.-Soviet Relations in the Era of Détente; Survival Is Not Enough: Soviet Realities and America's Future; Russia Under the Old Regime; The Russian Revolution; Russia Under the Bolshevik Regime; and Vixi: Memoirs of a Non-Belonger. He served for two years as the director of Eastern European and Soviet affairs for President Ronald Reagan's National Security Council. He spent his entire academic career at Harvard University. He died on May 17, 2018 at the age of 94.

Bibliographic information