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Polin: Studies in Polish Jewry Volume 1Poles and Jews: Renewing the Dialogue$
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Antony Polonsky

Print publication date: 2004

Print ISBN-13: 9781904113171

Published to Liverpool Scholarship Online: February 2021

DOI: 10.3828/liverpool/9781904113171.001.0001

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Michael Stanislawski. Tsar Nicholas I and the Jews: The Transformation of Jewish Society in Russia 1825-1855. Philadelphia: The Jewish Publication Society of America. 1983. Pp. xvii, 246.

Michael Stanislawski. Tsar Nicholas I and the Jews: The Transformation of Jewish Society in Russia 1825-1855. Philadelphia: The Jewish Publication Society of America. 1983. Pp. xvii, 246.

Chapter:
(p.367) Michael Stanislawski. Tsar Nicholas I and the Jews: The Transformation of Jewish Society in Russia 1825-1855. Philadelphia: The Jewish Publication Society of America. 1983. Pp. xvii, 246.
Source:
Polin: Studies in Polish Jewry Volume 1
Author(s):

Raymond Pearson

Publisher:
Liverpool University Press
DOI:10.3828/liverpool/9781904113171.003.0037

This chapter reviews Michael Stanislawski's Tsar Nicholas I and the Jews (1983). Michael Stanislawski's study is a bold, often provocative attempt to penetrate the self-serving legends of the period 1825–1855 to discover the true nature of Russian Jewish society and its crucial relationship with the regime of Tsar Nicholas I. His achievement in the exercise of historiographical re-evaluation is impressive, exhibiting a richness of content which is taxing to encapsulate in summary. His careful examination of the policy of the tsarist government towards its Jewish population certainly has the effect of exploding a variety of established myths. Rather than simply assuming that the administration was oppressively and irredeemably anti-semitic, Stanislawski sets out to reveal the precise dynamics of tsarist Jewish policy, eventually reaching the conclusion that its attitude was less anti-semitic than dictated by ‘a myopic perception of raison d'etat’.

Keywords:   Michael Stanislawski, Russian Jewish society, Tsar Nicholas I, tsarist government, Jewish population, anti-semitism, tsarist Jewish policy

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