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Jews and Muslims in the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union
 9783666310287, 9783647310282, 9783525310281

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Religiöse Kulturen im Europa der Neuzeit Herausgegeben von Friedrich Wilhelm Graf, Miloš Havelka und Martin Schulze Wessel

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Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht

Jews and Muslims in the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union Edited by Franziska Davies, Martin Schulze Wessel and Michael Brenner

Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht

With 12 figures Cover: see page 165 Bibliographic information published by the Deutsche Nationalbibliothek The Deutsche Nationalbibliothek lists this publication in the Deutsche Nationalbibliografie; detailed bibliographic data available online: http://dnb.d-nb.de. ISSN 2197-0955 ISBN 978-3-647-31028-2

You can find alternative editions of this book and additional material on our website: www.v-r.de © 2015, Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht GmbH & Co. KG, Theaterstraße 13, 37073 Göttingen / Vandenhoeck & Ruprecht LLC , Bristol, CT, U. S. A. www.v-r.de All rights reserved. No part of this work may be reproduced or utilized in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopying, recording, or any information storage and retrieval system, without prior written permission from the publisher. Typesetting by textformart, Göttingen | www.text-form-art.de

Contents Franziska Davies, Martin Schulze Wessel Introduction: Jews and Muslims in the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 Yohanan Petrovsky-Shtern Jewish Apples and Muslim Oranges in the Russian Basket: Options and Limits of a Comparative Approach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15 Michael Stanislawski The Jewish and Muslim Enlightenments in Tsarist Russia: Judah Leib Gordon and Ismail Bey Gasprinskii . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31 Franziska Davies Confessional Policies toward Jews and Muslims in the Russian Empire and the Case of the Army . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47 Vladimir Levin Common Problems, Different Solutions: Jewish and Muslim Politics in Late Imperial Russia . . . . . . . . . . . . . 65 David Schick On Religion and Economy: A Business Network Analysis of a Jewish Textile Company from Nineteenth Century Łódź . . . . . . . 87 David E. Fishman Yiddish and the Formation of a Secular Jewish National Identity in Tsarist Russia . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 103 Michael Khodarkovsky “Who Are We And Why?” Imperial, Muslim, and Ethnic Identities in the Russian Empire . . . . . . 113

6  Contents Adeeb Khalid Conflict and Authority among Central Asian Muslims in the Era of the Russian Revolution . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 127 David Shneer Documenting the Ambivalent Empire: Soviet Jewish Photographers and the Far East . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 141 Picture credits . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 165 Contributors and Editors . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 167

Franziska Davies, Martin Schulze Wessel

Introduction: Jews and Muslims in the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union Studying the history of Jews and Muslims in the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union is not a new topic, but one which has gained a particular relevance in the context of the research of empire or the “new imperial history”. Over three decades after the collapse of the Soviet Union which triggered a renewed interest in Russia’s imperial heritage, the fascination of scholars with its ethnic and religious heterogeneity is still unbroken. Jews and Muslims were the two largest non-Christian groups in the Russian Empire and the early Soviet Union and in many ways they presented the imperial bureaucracy with similar challenges. In some cases the state formulated similar responses. When looking into the historiographical narratives of Jews and Muslims in the Russian Empire and Soviet Union, similarities are also discernible. In the last decades,  a number of studies on Jewish-Russian history have been published, which emphasize the interaction between the imperial state, Russian society and Jews and underline that the history of Jews in Russia was not merely a story of victimhood and suppression, but that there were also examples of relatively successful integration.1 Similar historiographical trends are discernible with regards to the Muslim-Russian encounter, at least for the imperial period. Robert Crews has argued that the emphasis on the antagonism between Muslims and the Russian state caused historians to overlook the processes of interaction and interdependence which equally shaped the relationship between the imperial state and Muslim communities.2 This trend of deconstructing narratives of victimhood is not confined to Jewish and Muslim communities. Recent publica 1 See for example Petrovsky-Shtern, Y., Jews in the Russian Army, 1827–1917. Drafted into Modernity (Cambridge, 2009); Nathans, B., Beyond the Pale. The Jewish Encounter with Late Imperial Russia (Los Angeles, 2002). 2 Crews, R., “Empire and the Confessional State. Islam and Religious Politics in Nineteenth-Century Russia”, The American Historical Review 108:1 (2003), 50–83. However, in his study published in 2006, Crews applies the paradigm of the confessional state mostly to the Tatars and Bashkirs of the Russian Empire and to some extent to the Crimea and Central Asia, but leaves out the empire’s most troubled Muslim region, the Northern and Southern Caucasus: Crews, R., For Prophet and Tsar. Islam and Empire in Russia and Central Asia (Cambridge, Ma., 2006).

8  Franziska Davies, Martin Schulze Wessel tions on the Baltic region argue along similar lines.3 Phases of violence and persecution alternated with phases of co-operation and integration. Nonetheless, there are also differences with regard to the historiography on Jews and Muslims in Russia. Even though Western scholarship on Muslims in the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union has grown immensely in the last decades, it is still not as extensive as the research on Jews – at least with regards to the Jews of “European Russia”. At the same time, the history of the Jews of Central Asia remains under-researched.

Comparing Jews and Muslims in the Russian Empire The main focus of this volume is the history of Jews and Muslims in the imperial period. Studies which offer a comparative approach to this field have already been published in recent years. A. K. Tikhonov has analyzed the state’s policy towards Catholics, Muslims and Jews in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.4 Hans Dietrich Löwe has identified certain “patterns” of the Russian Empire’s “Nationalities policies” by comparing the state’s treatment of Poles, Jews and Tatars.5 Löwe outlines the religious and educational policy towards these groups as well as their integration into the imperial estate system. They presented a particular challenge to the Tsarist state, not only because of their numbers, but also due to the difficulties of integrating such diverse groups into the Russian administrative and social system. Islam, Judaism and Catholicism were often seen as an obstacle in this context and consequently Muslim, Jews and Poles all experienced onslaughts on their religion at different points in time. While falling short of a systematic comparison, Löwe raises important points. One intriguing aspect of Russia’s imperial history is the question of how her elites drew on experiences with one particular minority to deal with another. For example, when the policies towards the relatively new Jewish subjects were discussed in preparation for the Jewish statute of 1804, the model of the state’s policy toward Tatars was an important point of reference. Gavriil Derzhavin, who was principally opposed to an equal treatment of the Jews, nonetheless argued for the establishment of a religious authority for them, and explicitly named the Muslim Spiritual Assembly in Ufa as a model.6 On a more general level Löwe identifies parallels in the state’s approach to educating Jews and Tatars through 3 Brüggemann, K./Woodworth, B. D. (ed.), Russland an der Ostsee. Imperiale Strategien der Macht und kulturelle Wahrnehmungsmuster (16. bis 20. Jahrhundert) (Wien, 2012). 4 Tikhonov, A. K., Katoliki, Musul’mane i iudei Rossiiskoi Imperii v poslednei chetverti XVIII–nachale XX v (St. Petersburg, 2008). 5 Löwe, H.-D., “Poles, Jews, and Tartars [sic!]: Religion, Ethnicity, and Social Structure in Tsarist Nationality Policy”, Jewish Social Studies 6:3 (2000), 52–96. 6 Löwe, H.-D., “Poles, Jews, and Tartars”, 61.

Introduction 9

the establishment of state-sponsored schools. In both cases theses schools produced mix results from the point of view of the authorities.7 Löwe conceptualizes his analysis of Russian policy as part of the empire’s rather elusive and incoherent “nationality policy”. However, with regards to administrative practices, religion remained a central category until the end of the imperial regime. The religious policy of the Russian Empire has received particular attention in the context of empire studies. Robert Crews has emphasized that the Russian Empire should be regarded as a “confessional state” and has identified similar strategies toward Jews and Muslims in this respect. Jewish as well as Muslim communities witnessed the emergence of modernist and reformist movements in the nineteenth century. These more secularist movements were perceived as a threat to the autocratic regime and thus prompted government officials to support the conservative forces both within Jewish and Muslim societies.8 Seen in this light, Judaism and Islam were also identified by some within the imperial bureaucracy as potential allies of the state. Religion was an important pillar of imperial rule, an instrument of managing Russia’s diverse population. Religious authorities of the various faiths – some of whom had been created by the Russian policy in the first place – became mediators between the imperial state and their respective communities. Crews’s generalizations about Russia’s religious policy have been drawn primarily from studying the empire’s treatment of Islam in the Volga-Ural region and Crimea, and to some extent in Central Asia. However, his portrayal of the Russian Empire’s policy toward Islam has been criticized as one-sided, because it is centered on the state’s perspective and fails to take into account Muslim perceptions of Russian policies beyond rhetorical declarations of loyalty.9 According to Crews’ broader understanding of the Russian Empire as a “confessional state”, imperial rulers forged political loyalty and social integration on the basis of the empire’s various confessions, not only Russian Orthodoxy but other faiths as well. In a very general sense, the political role of the “confessional state” in shaping religious groups into confessions can also be applied to other regions of the empire. Yet, close examination of confessional politics in the western borderlands – which were particularly important for Russia’s experience with religious and national diversity  – makes clear that Crews’ paradigm is not sufficiently complex for a general analysis of Russian imperial policy towards all confessions. As Mikhail Dolbilov shows in his study of imperial policies in the 7 Löwe, H.-D., “Poles, Jews, and Tartars”, 71–75. 8 Crews, R. D., “Empire and the Confessional State”, 52. 9 See for example the reviews by Michael Kemper in Die Welt des Islam 47:1 (2007), 126–129 and Michael Khodarkovsky in The American Historical Review 112:5 (2007), 1491–1493; Alexander Morrison has challenged the thesis that the paradigm of the “con­ fessional state” can be applied to Central Asia: Morrison, A., Russian Rule in Samarkand. A Comparison with British India (Oxford, 2008), 56.

10  Franziska Davies, Martin Schulze Wessel General Government of Vilnius, Crew’s findings cannot simply be transferred to other parts of the empire. Dolbilov offers a more complex model distinguishing between logics of “disciplining” and “discrediting” in Russian confessional policy. According to Dolbilov, the disciplining logic featured the permanent intervention of the state into confessional affairs in order to assure political loyalty and social integration. This strategy required that the confessions be brought closer to the state’s basic aims, such as the proliferation of education and enlightenment. Dolbilov sees “disciplining” as being in permanent tension with an opposite logic of “discrediting,” by which state servitors questioned the loyalty and legitimacy of non-Orthodox confessions and thereby placed the policy of “tolerance” towards them in some doubt. In this context, the alternations between positive and negative policies towards Catholicism and Judaism appear to have been far from accidental. The discrediting of one confession was a significant factor in the disciplining of the other. With regard to Dolbilov’s findings about the entangled logics of Russia’s policy towards Catholicism and Judaism it is an interesting and so far unanswered question to which extent the imperial logics of disciplining and discrediting were intertwined in the case of Judaism and Islam as well.10 By the second half of the nineteenth century, Russia had developed what Paul Werth has called  a “multi-confessional establishment” into which Jews and ­Muslims were integrated to different degrees. Werth argues that Jews and ­Muslims had the most to gain from their integration into this kind of bureaucratic structure because it brought them implicit toleration by the imperial state after serious onslaughts on their religion in the course of the eighteenth century.11 Thus, one way of conceptualizing  a comparative history of Jews and ­Muslims in the Russian Empire is to analyze and compare state practices and policies towards them. In doing so, the historian reconstructs the perspective of the entity which brought Jews and Muslims together in the first place: the shared experience of Russian and later Soviet imperial rule. The perhaps most palpable way of integrating Jewish and Muslim experiences into one narrative and analytical framework is to look at their participation in Russian imperial institutions. The present volume is no exception. Franziska Davies and V ­ ladimir Levin chose this path by looking into the role of Jews and Muslims in the imperial army and the Duma respectively. Franziska Davies argues that it was precisely the advanced integration into Russia’s “multi-confessional establishment” that enabled Muslims to successfully lobby for the institutionalization of Islam in the armed forces at the beginning of the twentieth century. Jews did not possess compara 10 Dolbilov, M., Russkii krai, chuzhaia vera: etnokonfessional’naia politika imperii v Litve i Belorussii pri Aleksandre II, (Moscow, 2010). 11 Werth, P. W., The Tsar’s Foreign Faiths. Toleration and the Fate of Religious Freedom in Imperial Russia, (Oxford, 2014), esp. 46–73.

Introduction 11

ble resources. Vladimir Levin shows that while Jews and Muslims faced similar challenges on the Duma floor, this did not lead to cooperation between Jewish and Muslim politicians, partly out of fear by the Muslim parliamentarians to be associated with the Jewish minority whose position in late imperial Russia was arguably worse than their own. The history of the parliamentarian sessions shows that Muslims enjoyed broader support among the Russian political elites and were better integrated into the imperial space on both a practical and a symbolic level which ultimately secured them greater success in the Duma. Michael Stanislawski takes a different angle in his contribution. Rather than looking into the Jewish and Muslim participation in imperial institution or state policies towards them, Stanislawski focuses on Muslim and Jewish responses to a changing world by comparing Jewish and Muslim reformist movements in the Russian Empire. Stanislawski conceptualizes this approach by concentrating on two central figures of these movements in Russia, Judah Leib Gordon in case of the Jewish Haskalah and Ismail Bey Gasprinskii in case of Jadidism. Through his comparison of their ideological outlook, Stanislawski demonstrates that there were striking similarities between Gordon’s and Gasprinskii’s world views: both called for thorough cultural and educational reforms within their respective communities and  a rapprochement to European and Russian culture, both shared skepticism toward particularistic notions of ethnic and ­national identities because these contradicted their vision of universalistic values of enlightenment. But there were also important differences. For example, Gordon’s loyalty to the Tsarist regime was largely pragmatic, while Gasprinskii expressed a profound admiration for the empire’s imperial achievements. This ideological difference reflected their unequal social standing in Russian ­society: Gasprinskii was much closer to the Russian imperial elite, with his father having served in the Russian army. He himself had been educated in a military school in Moscow. Stanislawski’s paper illustrates that  a comparative history of Muslim and Jewish reformist movements could be an extremely promising field of research, even if its linguistic requirements are perhaps too many for just one researcher. A collaborative comparative history of the Russian Haskalah and Jadidism would be an extremely challenging, but rewarding project. At the same time, it is important to keep in mind that there is not one history of Muslim enlightenment in the Russian Empire as little as there is one history of the Haskalah in Russia. Jadidism originated in the Crimean Peninsula, had its greatest impact in the Volga-Ural region, but also spread to Central Asia. With the possible exception of the Caucasus, Jadidism was a phenomenon which influenced the diverse Muslim regions of the empire to varying degrees. Thus a comparison between Jewish and Muslim experiences in the Russian Empire should avoid essentialising the category of “Jews” and “Muslims” since neither were  a homogenous group and they did not perceive themselves as such. Yohanan Petrovsky-Shtern

12  Franziska Davies, Martin Schulze Wessel makes this clear in his contribution to this volume in which he outlines the pitfalls of a comparative approach to the history of Jews and Muslims in the Russian and Soviet realm by pointing to the many differences not just between Jews and Muslims, but also between the various Muslim communities. This begins with the history of their relationship to the imperial state: In a process spinning more than three hundred years, the Russian Empire integrated various ­Muslim peoples into its realm, starting with the Muslim peoples in the Volga region in the sixteenth century and ending only in the last decades of the nineteenth century with Russia’s conquest of Central Asia. In comparison to the process of ­integrating Muslim societies, the incorporation of the Jewish population in the western peripheries was far less complicated and completed a lot quicker. However, the Jews of the Russian Empire were not a homogenous group either. With the expansion into Central Asia in the last decades of the nineteenth century, the empire did increase the number of its Muslim subjects to a very considerable degree, but it also subjected the Jews of Bukhara to its rule. Thus, in case of the Jews of Central Asia and those of the Western provinces one may conclude that they too shared little but the coincidence of Russian rule. It was only during the Soviet era that these communities came into closer contact with each other.12 In spite of the limits of a comparative approach, Petrovsky-Shtern also identifies a number of research fields which would profit from such a perspective including the extent to which Russia’s imperial policy towards one confession was inspired by the experience with the other or a comparative history of Jews and Muslims in Central Asia in the imperial as well as the Soviet period – to name just a few of Petrovsky-Shtern’s proposals for future research. The contributions of this volume already outlined above follow a comparative perspective, the others concentrate either on Jews or Muslims in specific regions of the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union and cover a range of different topics. Michael Khodarkovsky reconstructs the experience of those individuals from the Caucasus who moved between their communities and Russian society as officers, administrators or intellectuals. He concludes that these intermediaries became strangers in both worlds. Not fully Russified because of their strong ties to their home communities, they nonetheless ceased to be natives as they returned to their villages in the uniform of the Tsar’s army or speaking their mother tongue with a strange accent. Nonetheless, these individuals were important for the construction of imperial identities. Many of them were responsible for bringing “modern” concepts such as ethnicity to their communities. As they began to write the history and sometimes the language of their ­peoples, they not only fostered the construction of ethnic identities, but also shaped the way 12 Levin, Z., “When it all began: Bukharan Jews and the Soviets in Central Asia”, in I. Baldauf/M. Gammer/T. Loy (ed.), Bukharan Jews in the 20th Century. History, Experience and Narration (Wiesbaden, 2008), 23–36, on p. 25.

Introduction 13

in which Russian society viewed these non-Russian and non-Christian ­peoples as well as their own empire. The question of Russia’s imperial identity is closely connected to the nature of Russian rule. Russian elites insisted that the Russian imperial experience fundamentally differed from those of the Western Euro­ pean colonial regimes which were merely grounded in political subjugation and economic exploitation, while Russia’s expansion was allegedly the result of  a peaceful process of offering protection to various indigenous peoples who had somehow always belonged to Russia’s imperial realm. But in reality, Russian rule in the Caucasus and Central Asia exhibited many features of colonial rule. ­K hodarkovsky points out that this “cognitive dissonance” in many ways persists to the present day. David Schick looks into the behavior of economic elites within Jewish society through a case study. Schick analyses the interrelation between religious identity and economic behavior by reconstructing the transnational business networks of the Jewish merchant Markus Silberstein in Łódź. He argues that with regard to long-distance trade, shared religious affiliation was a source of trust and therefore shaped the economic behavior of Markus Silberstein. David ­Fishman shows how Yiddish culture and language underwent a transformation at the turn of the nineteenth century. Fishman maintains that it was the social and cultural transformation of Jewish society in late imperial Russia which accounts for the changing role of Yiddish culture. At the turn of the century a large number of Jews had migrated from the shtetlekh to the cities in the Pale of Settlement where they became the producers and consumers of a secular Yiddish culture in theater, journalism and literature. Two contributions are dedicated to the revolutionary and early Soviet period. In the Soviet context, too, there are obvious parallels between Jewish and ­Muslim experiences: like all religions, Islam and Judaism were subjected to brutal onslaughts by the atheistic state. However, in this case too, there are interesting differences in local contexts: Muslim women of Central Asia were discovered as  a surrogate for the proletariat who had to be liberated from male domination and a backward social order. This new policy became most visible in the unveiling campaigns of the 1920s. In spite of the fact that the Bukharan Jewish women traditionally also wore a veil, they were much less targeted by the Soviet authorities.13 The contributions in the current volume, however, are less focused on state’s policy, but look at different forms of Jewish and Muslim participation in and re-interpretation of the revolution and Soviet modernity.

13 Northrop, D., Veiled Empire. Gender and Power in Stalinist Central Asia (Ithaca/ London, 2004), 51; Levin, Z., “When it all began: Bukharan Jews and the Soviets in Central Asia”, in I. Baldauf/M. Gammer/T. Loy (ed.), Bukharan Jews in the 20th Century. History, Experience and Narration (Wiesbaden, 2008), 23–36.

14  Franziska Davies, Martin Schulze Wessel Adeeb Khalid’s contribution is dedicated to the revolutionary period and the Muslim population’s responses to the advent of Soviet power in Central Asia. Khalid’s contribution illustrates very clearly that one cannot speak of the “Muslims in the Russian Empire”, but that the regional and cultural context of Muslim identities needs to be taken into account. Central Asia was not integrated into the Russian Empire’s “multi-confessional establishment”. Nor did the Muslims of the Russian Empire conceive themselves as one community, attempts to mobilize the diverse Muslim communities of Russia under the banner of Islam ultimately failed. Not only did Russia’s Muslims experience the revolution in different ways, but Adeeb Khalid shows that the urban elites of Central Asia were also deeply divided over the meaning of Islam and the political and social order of Turkestan after the downfall of the imperial regime. The revolutionary events in the urban centers of Central Asia soon turned into bitter dispute between the older elites of the ulama and the modernist Jadids who competed for moral authority. The penetration of Central Asia by the Soviet regime led to the Jadids gaining the upper hand and in the early 1920s an anti-clerical discourse emerged which was initially more influenced by the older conflicts within Muslim society than by Soviet ideology. David Shneer analyses the role of two Jewish individuals who participated in the construction of Soviet modernity through photography. Georgii Zelmanovitch and Semyon Fridlyand were only two of many Jewish-Soviet photographers. Fridlyand was originally from Kiev, Zelmanovitch was an Ashkenazi Jew born in Tashkent. Both were central figures for the photographic documentation of the empire’s ethnic diversity and the advent of Soviet civilization in the imperial peripheries. Zelmanovitch documented the assumed achievements of Soviet policy in Central Asia and both photographers were deeply involved in visualizing the Soviet experiment of creating a “Jewish Autonomous Region” in Russia’s Far East, in Birobidzhan. This volume is the result of  a conference which took place in June 2013 at the Historische Kolleg in Munich and was funded by the International Research Training Group “Religious Cultures in 19th and 20th-century Europe”. The aim of the conference was to bring together leading specialists in the field of Jewish and Muslim history in the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union and to reflect on the possibilities and limits of a comparative approach to the history of these communities who shared many features, but who were also shaped by specific cultural, local and political experiences.

Yohanan Petrovsky-Shtern

Jewish Apples and Muslim Oranges in the Russian Basket: Options and Limits of a Comparative Approach In the 1860s, the Russian imperial bureaucrat Vasily Grigor’ev decided to enlighten the Russian reading public about the Kazakh steppe and to criticize the condescending manner in which the Russian regime treated the Muslim population. With his firsthand knowledge of the Kazakh region and its ­people, Grigor’ev sought to have an impact and alter the imperial colonization patterns. He was confident that there were many significant matters which Russian state officials, journalists, and the reading public could learn from Muslims and about Muslims. Grigor’ev considered this knowledge crucial for  a better perception, control, and reform of the people of the steppe. To make sure that he, a Russian clerk, would seem credible to Russian readers, Grigor’ev needed an authoritative voice – one with undeniable legitimacy. Toward that end, Grigor’ev invented an interlocutor,  a Kazakh sultan named Mendali Piraliev. The sultan was a wise, enlightened, and thoughtful individual who combined the best qualities of an Oriental ruler as described in Persian folklore with the real-life experiences of a contemporary nineteenth century Kazakh. The invented sultan reached his audience through the Slavophile newspaper Den’, which Grigoriev used as a pulpit to present Muslims in a favorable light; to give a favorable explanation of the culture of the steppe; and to justify Islam, its laws, and its customs in the eyes of Russians.1 About twenty years later, a certain Piotr Rachkovskii, a Russian administrator who supervised the work of the Russian secret police in Europe, decided to enlighten the Russian reading public about the East European Jews, the internal structure of their communal power, their attitudes to non-Jews, their role in political violence and revolutionary upheavals, and their idiosyncratic ethical qualities. Acting as a behind-the-scenes adviser, Rachkovskii commissioned hack Russian émigré journalist Matvei Golovinskii to create a text which would 1 Remnev, A., “Sultan Mendali Piraliev: the History of  a Hoax”, Ab Imperio 1 (2012), 106–117; for the first book publication of the bogus correspondence, see Grigor’ev, V. V., Sultana Mendali Piralieva deviat’ khivinskikh pisem v redaktsiiu “Russkogo mira” (St. Petersburg, 1873); for Grigor’ev’s orientalism and imperialism, see his most representative collection of articles, Rossiia i Aziia. Sbornik issledovanii po istorii, etnografii, napisannykh v raznoe ­vremia V. V. Grigor’evym, orientalistom (St. Petersburg, 1876).

16  Yohanan Petrovsky-Shtern prove that Jews were innate revolutionaries, cynical international manipulators, and immoral seekers of world domination. To convey all these things in a compelling way, Rachkovskii and Golovinskii needed an authoritative voice. Like Grigor’ev with his sultan Piraliev, Golovinskii resorted to literary invention. He fabricated the collective voice of an imaginary group of highly influential Jewish rulers, members of  a clandestine international Jewish kahal, who drafted their plans for the conquest of the world and subjugation of non-Jews in their classified protocols. Golovinskii chose to speak to the reading public through the voices of the Elders of Zion, whose protocols had allegedly been stolen by a woman in the Russian diplomatic service, brought to Russia, and published for the first time in  a Kishinev-based newspaper. The compilers of the protocols sought to have an impact and change the Russian attitude toward the Jews – and as we know, they certainly had an impact.2 These two Russian political fictions, one produced the persona of sultan ­Piraliev, the other the persona of the Elders of Zion, addressed differences between Muslims and Jews in the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union. One Russian administrator created a literary fiction to raise the profile of Muslims and Islam by speaking through an authoritative Muslim interlocutor. Another Russian administrator, assisted by a Russian journalist, chose a similar model to defame the Jews and Judaism. Through the guise of a Muslim, the Russian clerk called for tolerance toward Muslims, for a better understanding of Islam, and for a closer study of the legacy of the Great Steppe. In the second case, the Russian author called for  a curtailment of any discussion of granting Jews civil equality. Instead he sought to reverse Jewish emancipation, if not banish Jews from Russian public life altogether. The invented Sultan Peraliev portrayed Muslims as enlightened, rational, and tolerant friends of the Russians. The fic 2 The literature on the protocols is vast, for the most recent works, see Horn, E./Hagemeister, M. (ed.), Die Fiktion von der jüdischen Weltverschwörung: Zu Text und Kontext der “Protokolle der Weisen von Zion” (Göttingen, 2012); Matussek, C., Der Glaube an eine ­“ jüdische Weltverschwörung”: Die Rezeption der “Protokolle der Weisen von Zion” in der arabischen Welt (Berlin, 2012); Landes, R./Katz, S. T., The Paranoid Apocalypse: A Hundred-Year Retrospective on the Protocols of the Elders of Zion (New York, 2012);  Webman, E. (ed.), The Global Impact of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion: a century-old myth (London/New York, 2011); Romano, S., I falsi protocolli: il complotto ebraico dalla Russia di Nicola II a oggi (Milan, 2011); Taguieff, P. A., L’imaginaire du complot mondial: aspects d’un mythe moderne (Paris, 2006); Ben-Itto, H., The Lie that Wouldn’t Die: The Protocols of the Elders of Zion (London/ Portland, 2005); De Michelis, C. G., The Non-Existent Manuscript: A Study of the Protocols of the Sages of Zion (Lincoln, 2004);  Tazbir, J., Protokoły mędrców Syjonu: autentyk czy falsy­f ikat (Warsaw, 2004); De Michelis, C. G., La giudeofobia in Russia: dal Libro del kahal ai Protocolli dei savi di Sion (Turin, 2001). For the review of the previous works, see the essay and bibliography amassed in Petrovsky-Shtern, Y., “Contextualizing the Mystery: Three Approaches to the Protocols of the Elders of Zion”, Kritika: Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History 2 (2003), 395–409.

Jewish Apples and Muslim Oranges in the Russian Basket  17

tive Elders of Zion presented the Jews as staunch, cunning, and perfidious enemies of the Russian people, and indeed of all humankind.3 These two literary inventions open up several issues related to Muslims and Jews in the Russian context. Sultan Peraliev and the Elders of Zion represent very different images, indeed, but Jews and Muslims in the Russian Empire were also far from being similar religious minorities. In the case of Jews and Muslims in the Russian Empire, we are dealing with apples and oranges: Jewish apples and Muslim oranges. Nevertheless, the Russian basket supplies us with a useful, if not absolutely necessary, framework for comparing Jews and Muslims. Before one traces parallels between the two religious groups in the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union, we must consider several major historical, geographic, political, administrative, and cultural differences. Let us start with Russia’s appropriation of lands which, with some margin of error, one can identify as Muslim. This appropriation went on for more than three centuries and was characterized by highly diverse military and political strategies and colonizing practices. Kazan, the center of the Volga Tatar lands, fell to the troops of Ivan the Terrible in 1552. Later in the sixteenth century, the Russians established a fortress in Ufa, the center of the Bashkir lands. What is today Tatarstan and Bashkorstan became nominally Russian long before Russia transformed itself into an empire. The Crimean peninsula with its khanate residence in Bakhchisarai was famously annexed under Catherine II in 1783, while Russia came to control the coastal line of present-day Azerbaijan in the late 1820s. The war for the Northern Caucasus lasted more than thirty years and ended in the late 1850s. After several unsuccessful attempts to take control of the Transcaspian region, the Russian troops finally conquered the territories of Central Asia in the 1860s, particularly what is today Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.4 3 On Muslims and Jews in Russian public discourse and political imagination, see above all, Campbell, E., “The Muslim Question in Late Imperial Russia”, in J. Burbank/ A. V. Remnev/M. Von Hagen (ed.), Russian Empire:Space, People, Power, 1700–1930 (Bloomington, 2007), 321–351; Campbell, E., “The Autocracy and the Muslim Clergy in the Russian Empire (1850s–1917)”, Russian Studies in History 44:2 (2005), 8–29; Smirnov, A. V., Rossiia i musul΄manskii mir: inakovost΄ kak problema (Moscow, 2010); Gudkov, L. (ed.), Obraz vraga (Moscow, 2005), 102–126. Limits of interreligious tolerance in the Russian empire based on Jewish, Muslim and other examples is discussed at length in an excellent volume Geraci, R. P./ Khodarkovsky, M. (ed.), Of Religion and Empire: Missions, Conversion, and Tolerance in ­Tsarist Russia (Ithaca, 2001). 4 On the appropriation of the Muslim lands by the Russian empire, their subsequent absorption and transformation of Russia into an Eurasian empire, see among other publications, Firouzeh, M., On the Religious Frontier: Tsarist Russia and Islam in the Caucasus  (London/ New York, 2006); Arapov, D.Iu., Imperatorskaia Rossiia i musulmanskii mir: sbornik statei (Moscow, 2006); Crews, R. D., For Prophet and Tsar: Islam and Empire in Russia and Central Asia (Cambridge, Ma., 2006); Laruelle, M., Russian Eurasianism: An Ideology of Empire (Washington, D. C./Baltimore, 2008); Abdulatipov, R. G., Sud΄by islama v Rossii: Istoriia i perspektivy (Moscow, 2002).

18  Yohanan Petrovsky-Shtern Compare this 300-year process of absorbing the eastern lands to the relatively swift conquest of two-thirds of Poland-Lithuania, accomplished without excessive military intervention in three phases: in 1772, 1793, and 1795. With facile territorial expansion, about one million Jews previously not allowed into the empire became Russian subjects. Russia’s very different military experiences in its eastern and western borderlands informed the differences in approach to the people inhabiting these lands. The imperial administrators came to the conclusion that the more easily appropriated territories in the west should and could be more expediently and more aggressively incorporated into the empire.5 After the first Partition of Poland Catherine reorganized the former P ­ olish palatinates as provinces, and integrated them into the Russian administrative system made up of guberniias (provinces). The territories which Russia acquired after the second and third partition were dealt with in the same fashion. In the following decades Russian imperial institutions expanded westwards. Within half a century, these institutions were firmly rooted in the former lands of e­ astern Poland. What occurred in the eastern lands of the empire was quite different. For several centuries, Russia treated its new eastern lands as territories for moving troops and trade caravans between the European and Asian parts of the empire. Unlike Polish palatinates not all of them were administrative entities under direct state control. Instead, the conquered lands were called “roads” – the Kazan military road, the Orenburg military road, the Caucasus military road, and so on. However, these descriptive labels did not apply to roads alone, but to huge territories which these roads traversed. Among the diverse Muslim population of the empire, only the Tatars and Bashkirs of the Volga-Ural region and the Crimea lived under Russian civilian rule in the nineteenth century especially in the governorates of Kazan, Orenburg, Ufa and the Tauride province. In the steppe, Central Asia and the Caucasus things were more complicated: Although the Kazakh khanate accepted the Russian protectorate in the 1730s, Russian expansion into Central Asia continued well into the nineteenth century with the first Turkestan governor-generalship only being established in 1866. Until then Orenburg had been the empire’s outpost in the steppe.6 Civil administration came to partially replace, partially reinforce the military administration even later, in 1899. Hitherto, the vast territories of the Russian South-East in the trans-Caspian region were controlled by the war minister. Before the im 5 On the partitions of Poland and Russia’s absorption of the Polish Jewish population, see Klier, J., Russia Gathers Her Jews: The Origins of the “Jewish Question” in Russia, 1772–1825 (DeKalb, 1986); Bartal, I., The Jews of Eastern Europe, 1772–1881 (Philadelphia, 2002), 23–37; Polonsky, A., The Jews in Poland and Russia, in 3 vols. (Oxford/Portland, 2010), 1: 323–337. 6 Khodarkovsky, M., Russia’s steppe frontier (Bloomington, 2002), 28–30.

Jewish Apples and Muslim Oranges in the Russian Basket  19

position of direct imperial rule, the territories east of the Caspian Sea were considered the krai, or periphery of the empire, and were supervised by the administrator located in distant Tiflis (Tbilissi). Apparently the Russian regime, for a variety of reasons, was reluctant at first to establish imperial governing institutions in the southeast, and unwilling to organize the administration of the new territories regionally.7 One of the obvious reasons for this discrepancy between the lands acquired in the east and those acquired in the west was the enormity of the geographical expansion, particularly in the east. The empire simply lacked sufficient administrative personnel and could not afford to spread itself too thin. Another reason was military. The incorporation of the former Polish lands into the empire was not without its problems. The Poles rebelled in 1794, 1830, 1846 (in the free city of Krakow), and 1863/64, but these rebellions were quickly and successfully suppressed, and Krakow punished by the cancellation of its status as a free city and its transfer under the Austrian imperial administration. Order was imposed by iron fist, and colonization was enhanced. While the Poles considered Russia’s western borderlands a war zone, for the Jews it was definitely a realm of peace. Their loyalty to Mother Russia manifested itself during the Crimean and Balkan campaigns and also much earlier, during the 1812 Napoleonic in­vasion, in the midst of which the leaders of the Jewish communities publicly supported the anti-Napoleonic campaign and the highest Russian bureaucrats seriously discussed how to establish a secret intelligence service drawing on the Russian Jews’ ties to international Jewry and relying on Jewish patriotic fervor.8 The Polish rebellions notwithstanding, Russia was more concerned with its military rivalry with Prussia, Austria, and the Ottomans rather than the conquered and rebellious Poles. These were far more serious adversaries. The eastern expansion had opposite results. Various groups of Muslims  – particularly the ethnically diverse groups in the Northern Caucasus – considered the territory loosely controlled by the Russian troops as the dar al-harb, the Abode of War. Representatives of the ruling Muslim clans signed what historians of Islam in Russia called a “ fetvah with the White Tsar” – what should ­perhaps more accurately be called a hudnah (the former meaning a responsum, legal opinion or ruling, the latter a temporary cessation of hostilities). But this peaceful agreement, from the viewpoint of the Muslim elites, was only temporary (as mandated by Islamic law) and binding only for some groups in the Caucasus, Ural, and Central Asiatic lands. The 1704–1711 and 1755–56 Bashkir 7 Abashin, S., “Razmyshleniia o Tsentral’noi Azii v sostave Rossiiskoi imperii”, Ab Imperio 4 (2008), 456–471; Bobrovnikov, V., “Chto poluchilos’ iz “Severnogo Kavkaza v ­Rossiiskoi imperii”: poslelovie redaktora neskolko let spustia”, Ab Imperio 4 (2008), 501–519. 8 Lukin, B., “’Sluzhba naroda evreiskogo i ego kagalov’: evrei i Otechestvennaia voina 1812 goda”, Lehaim 11:187 (2007), 38–42.

20  Yohanan Petrovsky-Shtern uprisings, the multiple Tatar rebellions, and continuous Tatar support of Ural ­Cossack and peasant rebels such as Stepan Razin and Emelian Pugachev, as well as the 1873–76 Kokand and 1898 Andizhan rebellions, proved that the autochthonous populations, for a complex variety of reasons, did not accept Russian control and readily resorted to drastic military measures in an attempt to overthrow it.9 The Muslims of European Russia abandoned their resistance against Russian rule after the implementation of Catherine’s policy of toleration in the late eighteenth century and even experienced  a religious and cultural revival in the nineteenth, but things were quite different in the Caucasus. Here, the Russian military had to conduct extensive military and diplomatic initiatives and even resort to cunning maneuvering between various groups of Muslims to finally put an end to the more than thirty-year war in the Northern Caucasus, a campaign which lasted from 1834 to 1859. This experience contributed to the idea of the “fanatic” Muslim, who fiercely opposed Russian rule but whose capability of resistance also fascinated military elites. The landless Jews, on the other hand, did not rebel against the empire even once, and when they did, in the wake of the rising socialist movement in the 1890s and later in Krynki, Vilna, or Odessa, they did so as proletarians fighting for the emancipation of the international workers, not as Jews with a distinct Jewish national or political agenda.10 The colonial projects in the imperial east fell short of the relative success of the colonization of Russia’s west. In the formerly Polish territories there were religious conflicts between Hasidim and Mitnagdim, followers of the movement of religious enthusiasm and its radical opponents; clashes between the ­Eastern Orthodox, the Uniates, and the Catholics; and of course much more serious social tensions between the landlords  – Polish, then Russian  – and the peasant population. These conflicts sometimes took the form of anti-Jewish violence. Yet these nineteenth-century conflicts were a far cry from the bitter geo­ political, ideological, religious, and territorial rivalry between the Bashkirs in Ufa and the Tartars in Kazan over territory and ethnogenetic myths, between the Uzbeks and the Kyrgyz over control of the Fergana valley, and between various ethnic groups of Muslims in Dagestan and Chechnya in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Elite representatives of these groups sought Russian support and approval for their actions, and made consistent attempts to get the imperial authorities and the military involved, while the regime allowed itself to get involved only in extraordinary circumstances. The imperial (and 9 Babadzhanov, B., “Andizhanskoe vosstanie 1898 goda i ‘musul’manskii vopros’ v Turkestane (vzgliady ‘koloniztorov’ i ‘kolonizirovannykh’)”, Ab Imperio 2 (2009), 155–200. 10 Pipes, R., “Jews and the Russian Revolution: A Note”, in A. Polonsky et al. (ed.), POLIN: Studies in Polish Jewry. Vol. 9: Poles, Jews, Socialists. The Failure of an Ideal (London, 1996), 55–57.

Jewish Apples and Muslim Oranges in the Russian Basket  21

later the Soviet) administration knew well that these conflicts bordered on open inter-ethnic clashes. The regime also treated Jews and Muslims differently because of the internal cultural characteristics of the two groups. Muslims in the Russian Empire, particularly in the Caucasus and the Ural regions, had their local customs, called ‘adat, that shaped the way of life of local Muslims, although these customs often contradicted the universal Muslim laws (shariah). In various regions of the Pale of Settlement, traditional Jewish communities, like Muslims with their ‘adat, also had their customary law, called minhag, and raised it to the level of ­legal regulation by emphasizing that minhag ha-makom doheh halakhah – or, ­local customary law annuls a corresponding universally accepted legal ruling. Of course, most minhagim, local customs, reflected differences in liturgy or ritual law, and almost never encroached on criminal, family, or financial matters. Despite this parallel between local and general law among Muslims and Jews, the Russian authorities almost never dealt with the contradictions between Jewish custom and the law in the western provinces and as  a rule they relied on their general (although superficial) understanding of the basic aspects of Judaism. On the contrary, in the Caucasus and elsewhere, the imperial administrators had to fight against the local customs (sometimes atavistically pagan), and take sides in the clashes between the ‘adat and the shariah, and even to favor further spread of the laws of the shariah.11 It would not be an exaggeration to claim that in the long run, the Russian conquest of the new territories in the Caucasus, the Urals, and Central Asia became conducive to the ubiquitous establishment of the s­ hariah norms among Russian Muslims. These legal differences need particular scrutiny.12 Muslims and Jews were too different socially and economically to be treated on par with one another. In the western provinces, the Russian regime dealt with  a predominantly sedentary population, however mobile the trading estates among the Jews were. This population treated their marketplace towns as their immediate home and blessed their dwelling place by calling it kehillah ­kedoshah,  a holy community. Be it Berdichev, Dubno, Eishishek, Pinsk, or Uman, Jews considered these holy communities as their homeland, although it was an exilic and temporary one. Long before Zionism came into being, these Jews raised funds for the yishuv communities in the Holy Land. Starting in the late eighteenth century, they flocked to the sermons of the shelikhim (communal messengers) from Hebron, Jerusalem, Tiberias, and Safed. They adorned their houses and synagogues with ornaments decorated with symbols of the second 11 Kemper, M., “’Adat Against Shari’a: Russian Approaches toward Daghestani ‘Customary Law’ in the 19th century”, Ab Imperio 3 (2005), 147–174. 12 For one of the productive attempts to scrutinize this issue, see Crews, R. D., “Islamic Law, Imperial Order: Muslims, Jews and the Russian State”, Ab Imperio 3 (2004), 467–490.

22  Yohanan Petrovsky-Shtern Temple, Jerusalem, and the Holy Land. They knew well that their promised land had been, was, and would be Eretz Yisroel, the land of Israel. Once Herder’s idea of Volksgeist (the spirit of a people) began to shape Jewish diaspora nationalism, it was East European Jews who insisted on the commonality of the land of ­Israel for Diaspora Jewry, whereas western European Jews readily entertained alternative options for a Jewish national home. In short, Jews in Russia had a clear vision of their sedentary dwelling in the Diaspora – and dreamt of a future and permanent residence in the land of Israel.13 On the other hand, a variety of Muslim groups in the newly acquired Russian territories in the East and South East lived a nomadic life, considered themselves nomads, and conceptualized their understanding of homeland (watan), and peoplehood (millet), along the lines of the European national-building programs very late, only with the rise of the Jadidism (enlightened) movement and not before the 1890s.14 For example, Tartar national history remained in the hands of the ulema, Muslim clerics, throughout the nineteenth century, hence Tartar historiography resisted western European nation-building programs. Furthermore, Muslims in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century Russia did not always necessarily see themselves as part of the larger Muslim world. Consider that until the late nineteenth century Muslims from Bashkiria and Tatarstan went on hajj to the holy graves of great sheiks in Khiva, Bukhara, Urgench, Osh, and S­ amarkand (where it is said that the hand of the prophet Daniel was ­re-buried). Of these many towns, Bukhara was their Mecca and they went there from Ufa, Kazan, and Orenburg on pilgrimage much more often that to Mecca and Medina.15 Whether Muslims in Russia considered themselves part of the greater Muslim ummah remains a mystery. Muslim ethno-nationalism was slow to come to the fore. It became particularly palpable immediately before the collapse of communism, with the Kyrgyz orchestrating ethnic cleansings in Osh, Tatars opting for the Turkish-esque Latinized alphabet, Chechen leaders seek 13 See the chapter “If I Forget Thee…” in Petrovsky-Shtern, Y., The Golden Age Shtetl: A New History of Jewish Life in East Europe (Princeton, 2014), 273–303. 14 For more detail on the late encounter of Muslim thought with Western concepts of ­nationalism see, Noack, C., Muslimischer Nationalismus im Russischen Reich. Nationsbildung und Nationalbewegung bei Tataren und Baschkiren, 1861–1917 (Stuttgart, 2000), 135–217, particularly 171–177. 15 The matter, however, remains complicated as some Muslims of Central Asia and Caucasus did go on pilgrimage to Mecca and Medina. See Brower, D., “Russian Roads to Mecca: Religious Tolerance and Muslim Pilgrimage in the Russian Empire”, Slavic Review 55:3 (1996), 567–584. Still this traditional pilgrimage remains a privilege of the very few (in comparison to group pilgrimages to the shrines in Central Asia). Thus, the hajj to Mecca is mentioned only twice and in passing in a major book on Islam in Russia and the USSR , see Dudoignon, S. A./Hisao, K., (ed.), Islam in Politics in Russia and Central Asia (Early Eighteenth to Late Twentieth Centuries) (London, 2001), index (Mecca, hajj). Eileen Kane’s forthcoming book will be an important contribution to answer these questions.

Jewish Apples and Muslim Oranges in the Russian Basket  23

ing to create an emirate in the Northern Caucasus, and the Bashkirs moving from the nineteenth-century ethnic rivaling to competing with their Muslim neighbors for Ancient Bulgar ethnic roots.16 The discrepancy between the roles the economic elites of the two communities, Jewish and Muslim, played in Russian modernization is particularly striking. The state reforms directed at Jews in the 1830s–1840s and those of Muslim life in the 1860s seemed to be a direct assault on the confessional autonomy of the Jewish and Muslim communities. While  a complex combination of resistance and adaptation were common to both groups, the Jews were much quicker in absorbing the reforms, which subsequently contributed to the modernization of the empire as a whole. Jewish bankers, industrialists, and entrepreneurs, the direct beneficiaries of these reforms, invested in such strategically important branches of industry and international commerce as the Russian stock exchange, river steamboat transportation, oil and coal mining, sugar production and grain trade, the banking system, and railroad construction. Although the Russian administration almost privileged Muslim guild merchants and integrated Muslim elites much earlier than the Jewish ones, the former played a very modest role in the development of Russian capitalism. Hence, unlike the Russian Jews, they were not equated with the evils of Russia’s industrialization, westernized modernization, capitalist exploitation, and the revolutionary consequences triggered by these processes. The Russian Jews therefore came to be associated with capitalism, whereas the Russian Muslims did not.17 Unsurprisingly, Jews became targets of the xenophobic far-right and counterreform propaganda, whereas the Muslims were spared that fate. As in German anthropological, philological, and racial discourse, the “Semites” in Russia were the Jews, never the Muslims. Long-lasting Eastern Orthodox anti-Judaism permeated the anti-Jewish bias of Russian officialdom and created serious obstacles for successful Jewish integration into the empire. By the second half of the century, the regime increasingly mistrusted its ethnic and religious minorities in the western borderlands (Jews, Ukrainians, Poles) while it developed more trusting relations with the religious and ethnic minorities in the East. Muslims had their own military units, even regiments, and had state-paid imams in military service whose salaries and legal status were confirmed legislatively. At 16 Noack, C., “From Ancestry to Territory: Spatial Dimensions of Muslim Identity in Imperial Russia”, Ab Imperio 2 (2006), 81–100; Frings, A., “Reforma pismennosti v Tatarstane i kulturnaia pamiat”, Ab Imperio 3 (2004), 175–210. 17 Roberts, P., “Jewish Bankers, Russia, and the Soviet Union, 1900–1940: The Case of Kuhn, Loeb and Company”, American Jewish Archives Journal 49:1–2 (1997), 9–37; Aronsfeld, C. C., “Jewish Bankers and the Tsar”, Jewish Social Studies 35 (1973), 87–104; Khiterer, V., “The Brodsky Sugar Kings: Jewish Industrialists, Philanthropists and Community Leaders of Late Imperial Russia”, Jews and Slavs 19 (2008), 25–41; Ananich, B. V., Bankirskie doma v Rossii, 1860–1914 gg.: ocherki istorii chastnogo predprinimatel’stva. 2 izd. (Moscow, 2006). 

24  Yohanan Petrovsky-Shtern the same time, rabbis were allowed to tend to the Jewish soldiers in active service, but never had the legal status of military chaplains and subsequently dis­ appeared from the war ministry books.18 Furthermore, the “red” threat in the late Russian Empire was stereotypically associated with socialism and the leftist-minded Jews, and was more often than not juxtaposed with the “yellow” threat represented by Chinese and Japanese advances in the Far East.19 However, the r­ egime made very little, if any, attempts to include Russian Muslims as one of the stereotypical groups of enemy aliens. There was little parity between the ways the empire treated Jews and Muslims intellectually. Judaism and Jewish languages were of very little, if any, interest to the imperial administration. The Hebrew language was a sublime subject for a highbrow custodian of the oriental collection of the imperial library like ­Avraham Harkavy,  a university professor of Semitic studies like Daniil ­Chwol­son, and his disciple, Russian and Soviet Orientalist Pavel Kokovtsov. These scholars dealt with books and manuscripts. Their expertise sometimes served a wider purpose – for example, during discussions of relations between the Jews and Slavic languages, Jews and Karaites, or Jews and blood libel (the Saratov or Beilis case)  – but it played  a modest role in Russia’s geopolitics. A hundred years later, the Soviets established a KGB -based Hebrew teaching program only because they needed to deal with the Cold War situation and keep a close eye on the Arab-Israeli conflict. On the contrary, the regime very quickly realized the geopolitical importance of Islam and the languages of the local Muslim populations, of which the Russian administration knew very little. Peter I commissioned a Russian translation of the Quran in 1716. Nicholas I ordered the Kazan military authorities to select the most gifted Tatar boys and create around their Turkish and Arabic teaching program a new school of military interpreters. The clash of Russian and British interests in Central Asia and Russian and Turkish interests in the Middle East definitely contributed to the strengthening of the Russian school of Oriental Studies. Governor von Kaufman lavishly sponsored  a formidable ­project – the collection of texts, documents, and data on the peoples of the Turkestan region (including what later became Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Kazakhstan).20 Although the project reflected  a colonialist agenda and pursued the pragmatic goal of enhancement of imperial control, its scholarly value outlived this original purpose. Of course, there were solid yet 18 For Muslims and Jews as military chaplains, see Petrovsky-Shtern, Y., Jews in the ­Russian Army, 1827–1917: Drafted into Modernity (Cambridge, 2007), 66–69. 19 Rossman, V., “Prizraki XIX veka: ‘zheltaia opasnost’ i evreiskii zagovor v evropeiskikh stsenariiakh zakata Evropy”, Paralleli 2–3 (2003), 11–52. 20 Gorshenina, S., “Krupneishie proekty kolonial’nykh arkhivov Rossii: utopichnost ekzostuvnoi Turkestaniki general-gubernatora Konstantina Petrovicha fon Kaufmana”, Ab Imperio 3 (2007), 291–354.

Jewish Apples and Muslim Oranges in the Russian Basket  25

largely unknown works written by some Russian administrators on the Jews – for example, notes on the Jewish question in Russia by Alexander Gradovskii, a renowned historian of law. There were also ethnographic works by Jews such as Moisei Berlin or Yakov Brafman, members of the Russian scientific societies. Even Jews who converted to Christianity pursued their scholarly agendas. Still, there was no university or Academy of Sciences-based specialist on Jews and Judaism in Russia or the Soviet Union who could compete with the depth and the breadth of Vasilii Bartol’d, the great Russian and Soviet expert on Islam. By no means should the above differences obfuscate the multiple similarities in the historical destinies of the Russian Jews and Muslims. The socio-economic crisis of the late nineteenth century threw Jews and Muslims into the fulcrum of the socialist movement, particularly those disappointed in the failed projects of the enlightened Jewish reformists, called maskilim, and the no less enlightened and zealous reformist Muslims called jadids. Ultimately, this triggered the creation of Muslim and Jewish Marxist groupings and parties.21 The Soviet Union synchronized the fate of Muslim and Jewish minorities as never before. The vociferous Soviet state-based atheistic campaign targeted any organized religion, be it that of the mosque, the synagogue, or the church. The korenizatsiia (indigenization) campaign was instrumental in creating loyal Jewish and Muslim national minority elites, who preached their communist gospel to the corresponding populations – and were subsequently purged. The human rights movement of the 1960s–1970s brought together the Crimean Tatars and the Zionists, who had a shared perception of the oppressive regime, resisted enforced assimilation, and tried to expose the hypocrisy of a regime that was not bound to its own constitutional law. The scope of this paper does not allow pondering, even briefly, these and other similarities between the two groups, although I would like to point out several that deserve immediate scholarly attention. Perhaps the imperial administrators were well aware of the differences between religious aliens such as the Muslims and the Jews and made no attempt to apply the same set of laws to them. Yet quite a number of high-ranking Russian bureaucrats dealt with both groups, sometimes simultaneously, more often consecutively. Alexander Dondukov-Korsakov commanded the Russian troops in the Caucasus, dealt extensively with Muslims, and fought against Shamil – but also served as the general governor of Kiev, Volhynia, and Podolia, and dealt extensively with the Jews. General Major Freitag from the gendarme corps inspected the Jewish communities in Volhynia and Podolia on  a regular basis, but also acted in the same capacity in the Muslim communities in the Cauca 21 Lazzerini, E. J., “Reform und Modernismus (Djadidismus) unter den Muslimen des Russischen Reiches”, in A. Kappeler/G. Simon/G. Brunner (ed.), Die Muslime in der Sowjet­ union und Jugoslawien (Köln, 1989), 35–48; Frings, A., “Playing Moscow off Against Kazan: Azerbaijan Maneuvering to latinization in the Soviet Union”, Ab Imperio 4 (2009), 249–266.

26  Yohanan Petrovsky-Shtern sus. The famous Russian sociologist, ethnographer, and liberal thinker Maksim Kovalevskii wrote extensively on Muslims – one need only mention his magnum opus The Law and Customs in the Caucasus (Zakon i obychai na Kavkaze, 1890) – yet he also presented a number of groundbreaking speeches on the Jewish question in the Russian Duma (published as  a single book in 1917). General von Kaufman spent almost two years as one of the top imperial administrators in the western provinces of the empire before he became the head of the ­Turkestan Military District and the first governor of the Turkestan province. One might ask whether his pragmatic non-interference in the Muslim r­ eligious affairs was in any measure prompted by his experience with the Lithuanian Catholics and Jews in the Russian northwestern regions such as Lithuania, where he governed. Count Konstantin Palen headed the inspection of Russian Turkestan and also served as head of a governmental commission on the Jewish question named after him (Palenskaia komissiia). These and many other Russian administrators dealt with both Jews and Muslims – and we cannot answer even with a minimal degree of certainty whether they ever transferred their administrative and cultural experiences from their treatment of the Jews to their treatment of Muslims. A comparative analysis of their personal, legal, cultural, and political experience in the western and the eastern borderlands of the empire would help trace parallels between the imperial treatment of Muslims and Jews and reestablish links between different borderlands of the empire. The imperial administrators, first and foremost the military governors and their staff cartographers and ethnographers, were at the forefront of creating the Russian version of the imperial Erdkunde, the science of land, a huge corpus of written knowledge about the new lands in the west and in the east, which secured further colonization and firmly placed these territories within the imperial colonial discourse. Works such as Pavlo Chubyns’kyi’s multi-volume Ethno­ graphic and Statistical Expedition to the Western Russian Region (1872–1878) and Vladimir Mezhov’s multi-volume Turkestan Collection (1878–1888) served one and the same purpose – to help local administrators improve the management of the corresponding areas, instill the idea of “voluntary attachment” of these lands to the Russian Empire, and justify colonization using the rhetoric of enlightenment. The exploration of the parallels between the ethnographic studies of Jews and Muslims in the broader context of what scholars call the “imperial knowledge”, the imperial “scholarly discourse”, and the “colonial archives” remain another scholarly priority.22 It should be of particular interest to explore how different groups of Jews and Muslims attempted to compel the empire to take sides in their internal rivalries. The reformist and modernist Muslim jadids and the Jewish maskilim sought to 22 See one of the best publications on this theme, S. Abashin/D. Arapova/N. Bekmakhanova, Tsentralnaia Aziia v sostave Rossiiskoi imperii (Moscow, 2008).

Jewish Apples and Muslim Oranges in the Russian Basket  27

impose their – sometimes too radical – enlightened agendas on the governmental administration. The government incorporated dozens of enlightened Jews, turning them into “expert Jews” in governmental service (about 150 served between 1849 and 1917), teachers in the newly established rabbinical seminaries, censors of Jewish books, and state-paid rabbis (kazennye ravviny).23 However, these enlightened activists soon realized that the state needed them as agents of control and Russification, not of reform. Much more cautious and conservative Russian administrators preferred to deal with the Jewish and Muslim dukhovnye obshchestva (religious communities), with mullahs and rabbis, the religious communities and their traditional leadership, rather than heed the much better educated and Russian-speaking enlightened reformers, who, to paraphrase one scholar of Islam in Russia, attracted much more attention than they deserved. Still, we can learn a lot about the late Russian Empire from the ways in which the regime treated those who sought to reform traditional religious communities from within. Although the anti-religious campaign in the Soviet Union in the late 1920s– early 1930s targeted any organized religion, Muslim institutions managed to survive in Central Asia and the Caucasus in much better shape than Judaism in the western territories of the USSR . Full-fledged communities of Mountain Jews, Oriental-rite Jews, and Bukharan Jews with their uninterrupted religious traditions, dietary laws, life-cycle rituals, and regular synagogue services survived in Makhachkala, Derbent, Kuba (Krasnaia Sloboda), Samarkand, and Bukhara, and not only because the Holocaust did not reach these territories but also because the local Soviet authorities, more often than not of Muslim origin, treated their religious subjects with a higher degree of tolerance and extended this relative Soviet tolerance to local Muslims and to the Jews. This unique situation of Jews and Muslims living peacefully for years side by side in Central Asia and the Caucasus deserves its own microhistoric analysis and remains a highly plausible scholarly desideratum, particularly because it allows for an expansion of the discussion of differences between the two communities with the exploration of some key similarities.24 Comparing Muslims and Jews in the Russian Empire might resemble a comparison between apples and oranges and yet, this comparison could be highly productive and bring unexpected results. After all, apples and oranges are both fruits, round, pleasant to the eye and to the nose, and provide good nutrition. 23 For more detail, see Schedrin, V., Jewish Bureaucracy in Late Imperial Russia: A Phenomenon of Expert Jews. 1850–1917. Ph. D. Thesis (Brandeis University, 2010) and Dohrn, V., Jüdische Eliten im Russischen Reich: Aufklärung und Integration im 19. Jahrhundert (Köln, 2008). 24 Cooper, A., Bukharan Jews and the dynamics of global Judaism (Bloomington, 2012); Levin, Z., Mafrihe ha-‘aravah ha-re‘evah. Ha-shilton ha-komunisti ve-yehudei Uzbekistan (Jerusalem, 2002); Altshuler, M., Yehude Mizrah Kavkaz: toldot ha-Yehudim ha-harariyim me-reshit ha-meah ha-tesha‘ ‘esreh (Jerusalem, 1990).

28  Yohanan Petrovsky-Shtern We must also consider them in the Russian basket. A comparative study of Jews and Muslims in the Russian context might yield a more profound understanding of the two ethnic minorities, their religious and legal commonalities in early modern times, their responses to integration, modernization, and adaptation in the twentieth century, and their post-modern endeavors in the former Soviet Union. This comparison would also be promising from the viewpoint of im­perial studies since it provides a deeper and wider comparative approach to the Russian imperial projects of geopolitical, intellectual, territorial, and social colonization. This discussion of the “Russian basket” could also open up a wider range of questions about the Russian imperial treatment of its colonies and minorities in a comparative imperial context, beside the Austro-Hungarian, British, and Ottoman Empires. It is my hope that we will be able to focus on specificities and particularities in investigating Muslims and Jews in the Russian Empire and the Soviet Union – but also keep an eye on the broader meaning of our comparative observations. Ultimately, that broader perspective will instruct us as to why imperial modernization brought to life such different representatives of the Muslims and the Jews as sultan Peraliev and the Elders of Zion.

Bibliography Abashin, S., “Razmyshleniia o Tsentral’noi Azii v sostave Rossiiskoi imperii”, Ab Imperio 4 (2008), 456–471. Abashin, S./Arapova, D./Bekmakhanova, N., Tsentralnaia Aziia v sostave Rossiiskoi imperii (Moscow, 2008). Abdulatipov, R. G., Sud΄by islama v Rossii: Istoriia i perspektivy (Moscow, 2002). Altshuler, M., Yehude Mizrah Kavkaz: toldot ha-Yehudim ha-harariyim me-reshit ha-meah ha-tesha ‘esreh (Jerusalem, 1990). Ananich, B. V., Bankirskie doma v Rossii, 1860–1914 gg.: ocherki istorii chastnogo pred­prini­ matel’stva. 2 izd. (Moscow, 2006).  Arapov, D. I., Imperatorskaia Rossiia i musulmanskii mir: sbornik statei (Moscow, 2006). Aronsfeld, C. C., “Jewish Bankers and the Tsar”, Jewish Social Studies 35 (1973), 87–104. Babadzhanov, B., “Andizhanskoe vosstanie 1898 goda i ‘musul’manskii vopros’ v Turkestane (vzgliady ‘koloniztorov’ i ‘kolonizirovannykh’)”, Ab Imperio 2 (2009), 155–200. Bartal, I., The Jews of Eastern Europe, 1772–1881 (Philadelphia, 2002). Ben-Itto, H., The Lie that Wouldn’t Die: The Protocols of the Elders of Zion (London/Portland, 2005). Bobrovnikov, V., “Chto poluchilos’ iz “Severnogo Kavkaza v Rossiiskoi imperii”: poslelovie redaktora neskolko let spustia”, Ab Imperio 4 (2008), 501–509. Brower, D., “Russian Roads to Mecca: Religious Tolerance and Muslim Pilgrimage in the Russian Empire”, Slavic Review 55:3 (1996), 567–584. Campbell, E., “The Autocracy and the Muslim Clergy in the Russian Empire (1850s–1917)”, Russian Studies in History 44:2 (2005), 8–29. Campbell, E., “The Muslim Question in Late Imperial Russia”, in J. Burbank/A. V. Remnev/ M. Von Hagen (ed.), Russian Empire:Space, People, Power, 1700–1930 (Bloomington, 2007), 320–347.

Jewish Apples and Muslim Oranges in the Russian Basket  29 Cooper, A., Bukharan Jews and the Dynamics of Global Judaism (Bloomington, 2012). Crews, R. D., For Prophet and Tsar: Islam and Empire in Russia and Central Asia (Cambridge, 2006). Crews, R. D., “Islamic Law, Imperial Order: Muslims, Jews and the Russian State”, Ab Imperio 3 (2004), 467–490. De Michelis, C. G., La giudeofobia in Russia: dal Libro del kahal ai Protocolli dei savi di Sion (Turin, 2001). De Michelis, C. G., The non-existent manuscript: A Study of the Protocols of the Sages of Zion (Lincoln, 2004). Dohrn, V., Jüdische Eliten im Russischen Reich: Aufklärung und Integration im 19. Jahrhundert (Köln, 2008). Dudoignon, S. A./Hisao, K., (ed.), Islam in Politics in Russia and Central Asia (Early Eighteenth to Late Twentieth Centuries) (London, 2001). Firouzeh, M., On the Religious Frontier: Tsarist Russia and Islam in the Caucasus (London/ New York 2006). Frings, A., “Playing Moscow off Against Kazan: Azerbaijan Maneuvering to Latinization in the Soviet Union”, Ab Imperio 4 (2009), 249–266. Frings, A., “Reforma pismennosti v Tatarstane i kulturnaia pamiat”, Ab Imperio 3 (2004), 175–210. Geraci, R. P./Khodarkovsky, M. (ed.), Of Religion and Empire: Missions, Conversion, and Tolerance in Tsarist Russia (Ithaca, 2001). Gorshenina, S., “Krupneishie proekty kolonial’nykh arkhivov Rossii: utopichnost ekzostuvnoi Turkestaniki general-gubernatora Konstantina Petrovicha fon Kaufmana”, Ab Imperio 3 (2007), 291–354. Grigor’ev, V. V., Rossiia i Aziia. Sbornik issledovanii po istorii, etnografii, napisannykh v raznoe vremia V. V. Grigor’evym, orientalistom (St. Petersburg, 1876). Grigor’ev, V. V., Sultana Mendali Piralieva deviat’ khivinskikh pisem v redaktsiiu “Russkogo mira” (St. Petersburg, 1873). Gudkov, L. (ed.), Obraz vraga (Moscow, 2005). Horn, E./Hagemeister, M. (ed.), Die Fiktion von der jüdischen Weltverschwörung: zu Text und Kontext der “Protokolle der Weisen von Zion” (Göttingen, 2012). Kemper, M., “’Adat against Shari’a: Russian Approaches toward Daghestani Customary Law in the 19th century”, Ab Imperio 3 (2005), 147–174. Khiterer, V., “The Brodsky Sugar Kings: Jewish Industrialists, Philanthropists and Com­ munity Leaders of Late Imperial Russia”, Jews and Slavs 19 (2008), 25–41. Klier, J., Russia Gathers Her Jews: The Origins of the “Jewish Question” in Russia, 1772–1825 (DeKalb, 1986). Landes, R./S. T. Katz, The Paranoid Apocalypse: A Hundred-Year Retrospective on the Protocols of the Elders of Zion (New York, 2012). Laruelle, M., Russian Eurasianism: An Ideology of Empire (Washington, D. C./Baltimore, 2008). Lazzerini, E. J., “Reform und Modernismus (Djadidismus) unter den Muslimen des Russischen Reiches”, in A. Kappeler/G. Simon/G. Brunner (ed.), Die Muslime in der Sowjetunion und Jugoslawien. Identität, Politik, Widerstand. (Köln, 1989), 35–48. Levin, Z., Mafrihe ha-‘aravah ha-re‘evah. Ha-shilton ha-komunisti ve-yehudei Uzbekistan ­(Jerusalem, 2002). Lukin, B., “’Sluzhba naroda evreiskogo i ego kagalov’: evrei i Otechestvennaia voina 1812 goda”, Lehaim 11:187 (2007), 38–42. Matussek, C., Der Glaube an eine “ jüdische Weltverschwörung”: die Rezeption der “Protokolle der Weisen von Zion” in der arabischen Welt (Berlin, 2012). Noack, C., Muslimischer Nationalismus im Russischen Reich. Nationsbildung und Nationalbewegung bei Tataren und Baschkiren, 1861–1917 (Stuttgart, 2000).

30  Yohanan Petrovsky-Shtern Noack, C., “From Ancestry to Territory: Spatial Dimensions of Muslim Identity in Imperial Russia”, Ab Imperio 2 (2006), 81–100. Petrovsky-Shtern, Y., “Contextualizing the Mystery: Three Approaches to the Protocols of the Elders of Zion”, Kritika: Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History 2 (2003), 395–401. Petrovsky-Shtern, Y., The Golden Age Shtetl: A New History of Jewish Life in East Europe (Princeton, 2014). Petrovsky-Shtern, Y., Jews in the Russian Army, 1827–1917: Drafted into Modernity (Cambridge, 2007). Pipes, R., “Jews and the Russian Revolution: A Note”, in A. Polonsky et al. (ed.), POLIN: Studies in Polish Jewry. Vol. 9: Poles, Jews, Socialists. The Failure of an Ideal (London, 1996), 55–57. Polonsky, A., The Jews in Poland and Russia, in 3 vols. (Oxford/Portland, 2010). Remnev, A., “Sultan Mendali Piraliev: the History of a Hoax”, Ab Imperio 1 (2012), 106–117. Roberts, P., “Jewish Bankers, Russia, and the Soviet Union, 1900–1940: The Case of Kuhn, Loeb and Company”, American Jewish Archives Journal 49:1–2 (1997). Romano, S., I falsi protocolli: il complotto ebraico dalla Russia di Nicola II a oggi (Milan, 2011). Rossman, V., “Prizraki XIX veka: ‘zheltaia opasnost’ i evreiskii zagovor v evropeiskikh stsenariiakh zakata Evropy”, Paralleli 2–3 (2003), 11–52. Schedrin, V.,  Jewish Bureaucracy in Late Imperial Russia: A Phenomenon of Expert Jews. 1850–1917. Ph. D. Thesis (Brandeis University, 2010). Smirnov, A. V., Rossiia i musul΄manskii mir: inakovost΄ kak problema (Moscow, 2010). Taguieff, P. A., L’imaginaire du complot mondial: aspects d’un mythe moderne (Paris, 2006). Tazbir, J., Protokoły mędrców Syjonu: autentyk czy falsyfikat (Warsaw, 2004). Webman, E. (ed.), The Global Impact of the Protocols of the Elders of Zion: A Century-Old Myth (London/New York, 2011).

Michael Stanislawski

The Jewish and Muslim Enlightenments in Tsarist Russia: Judah Leib Gordon and Ismail Bey Gasprinskii Awake my people! How long will you sleep? The night has passed, the sun shines through Awake, cast your eyes hither and yon Recognize your time and your place. Has the march of time stood still From the day you left for all parts of the globe? Thousands of years have come and gone Since your freedom was lost and you wandered away. Many generations have been born and died Oceans and continents have intervened Remarkable changes have taken place A different world engulfs us today. Awake my people! How long will you sleep? The night has passed, the sun shines through Awake, cast your eyes hither and yon Recognize your time and your place. The land where we live and are born Is it not thought to be part of Europe? Europe, the smallest of continents But the mightiest in all in wisdom and knowledge. This land of Eden is now open to you Its sons now call you “brothers” How long will you dwell among them as guests Why do you reject their hand? They have already removed the burden from your back And lifted the yoke from around your neck They have erased from their hearts hatred and folly They stretch out their hands to you in peace. So raise your heads high, stand up straight Look at them with loving eyes, Open your hearts to wisdom and reason, Become an enlightened nation, speaking their tongue.

32  Michael Stanislawski Everyone capable of learning should study Laborers and artisans should take to a craft The strong and the brave should be soldiers Farmers should buy fields and ploughs To the treasury of the state bring your wealth Bear your share of its riches and bounty Be a man in the streets and a Jew at home A brother to your countrymen and a servant to your king. Awake my people! How long will you sleep? The night has passed, the sun shines through Awake, cast your eyes hither and yon Recognize your time and your place.1

As is well known in some (radically diminishing) quarters, this Hebrew poem was written in 1862 by Judah Leib Gordon, the most important Hebrew poet of the nineteenth century and by far the most representative spokesperson for the Jewish Enlightenment movement – known as the Haskalah – in Russia. In this remarkable cri-de-coeur, entitled in the original “Hakizah ami” (“Awake My People”), Gordon, who was born in 1830 and died in 1892, was able to cast into verse not only his own most heartfelt beliefs, but also those of thousands upon thousands of fellow Jewish enlighteners (maskilim) within the Russian ­Empire, from Vilnius in the north to Odessa in the south, from Łódź in the west to Vitebsk in the east, and even farther away, for a selected number of privileged Jews, in the capitals of Moscow and St. Petersburg. Central to Gordon’s ideology, inherited directly from mid- and late-eighteenth century Berlin, was the belief in what can aptly be called a multifaceted cultural and social revolution among the Jews: first, a pedagogic revolution that would reject the centuries-old practice among Ashkenazic Jews of educating their male children solely in the basic texts of the Jewish tradition – the prayer book, the Bible, and finally the Talmud, to the exclusion of all other subject matter (and the exclusion of female children from any formal education whatsoever). This errant practice, G ­ ordon and the other maskilim believed, was in and of itself an ignorant betrayal of classical Jewish educational norms and practices in which Jews through the ages had fully engaged with the language, culture, and learning of the non-Jews among whom they lived; the most famous such rapprochement (or what in Russian would come to be called sblizhenie) was that of the Jews of medieval Spain, with Maimonides – Aristotelian philosopher, physician, theologian, supremely pious Jew – serving as what we might call the ideal type. But it was not only in twelfthor thirteenth-century Cordoba, the Jewish enlighteners argued, that this type of 1 This translation was first done for my book For Whom Do I Toil? Judah Leib Gordon and the Crisis of Russian Jewry (New York/Oxford, 1988), 49–50.

The Jewish and Muslim Enlightenments in Tsarist Russia  33

amalgamation of Jew and “man” had been essayed and put into effect; this had been what we would call the “default position” of the Jews wherever they lived, the only exception being Central and Eastern Europe  – and now that exception was erroneously mistaken as normative. One had only look to contemporary France or Germany or America to see Jews at home in their Jewish heritage and at the same time fully acculturated into French or German or American society – indeed, for some maskilim far too much at home in French, German, or American culture. The penultimate line of the penultimate stanza of “Awake My People” – “Heyeh adam be-zetha ve-yehudi be-ohalekha”, in English “Be a man in the streets and a Jew at home”, which was Gordon’s free adaptation of the verse from the Book of Deuteronomy 33:18 – “Rejoice O Zebulun in your going out and Isaachar in your tents” – was soon acknowledged, if with much controversy, as the basic slogan of the Russian Haskalah a whole. I shall soon return to Gordon and to the Haskalah, but here I want to propose a small thought experiment: if we replace the word “Jew” (which appears only once in the poem, in that famous verse) with “Muslim”, one would have the large part of the ideology of the most important Islamic enlightener in the nineteenth-century tsarist empire, Ismail Bey Gaspirali (or Gasprinskii in the more commonly used Russian version of his name), who was born in the Crimea in 1851 and died there in 1914. Here are the opening words of one of his earliest, and most famous and influential works, Russkoe musul’manstvo (Russian ­Muslims), published in Simferopol in 1881: What should be the relationship between the Tatar Muslims and the Russians?… Should the former simply remain neighbors of the latter, or should there develop a closer, familial relation between the two, as between children of the great family of nations which is our Fatherland…In recent years we have begun to read and hear talk of the great civilizing mission of Russia in the East. This is wonderful. But in what should this mission consist? Should we simply see a replacement of the khadis with district commanders, and the other traditional Muslim leadership roles with Russian administrative positions? […] Rather, we need  a thorough cultural reform among Russian Muslims to bring them in line with their Russian brethren: the goal of sblizhenie – rapprochement – of the Muslims and the Russians, under the guidance of the Russian civilizing mission. At present, Russian Muslims do not recognize, do not feel, the interests of their Russian Fatherland, its pains and glories, its overall goals and ideals. Ignorance of the Russian language isolates them from Russian thought and literature, not to speak of their total ignorance of universal human culture. Russian Muslims persist in living in the tight, stifling sphere of their old beliefs and superstitions, and do not have any concerns other than their next piece of bread, no ideals save filling their bellies. Isn’t it strange that other Muslim societies of many Asian centers, such as Constantinople, Smyrna, Cairo, Damascus, Tunis, etc., are so different from the life of Russian Tatars that among them you feel Europe, the development of intellectual and moral life; you hear new and stridently non-­Asiatic ideas and strivings – compared to which Russian Muslims seem still to be living in

34  Michael Stanislawski the days of Ivan the Terrible. The only exception are the small number of Lithuanian Tatars who strongly maintain their Muslim traditions while engaging fully in European culture and civilization and therefore stand at the head of Russian Muslims as a whole.2

Mutatis mutandis, replace the word “Muslims” or “Tatars” in Gasprinskii’s pamphlet with the word “Jew”, and you have the essence of Gordon’s ideology, of “Awake My People”, and of the Russian Haskalah. Now, if this were all to our story, if the histories of the Jewish and Muslim Enlightenments in the Russian Empire were entirely interchangeable, one could stop here. But of course, things are never that simple: although the ideational essences of the worldviews of Judah Leib Gordon and Ismail Bey Gasprinskii were effectively the same, there are fundamental differences between their two stories, and hence the stories of the movements they led and represent, the Jewish and Muslim Enlightenment movements in nineteenth-century Russia. Indeed, perhaps the overarching difference between the two stories is that one of them is very well known, having been the subject of professional scholarly inquiry for almost a century, whereas the academic study of the latter is just beyond its infancy. Thus, already in Odessa in 1912, the young scholar Joseph Klausner published in Russian a book entitled Novo-evreiskaia literatura (New Hebrew Literature) which was translated into German only eight years later and published in Berlin as Geschichte der neuhebräischen Literatur  – ironically  a full decade before the appearance in Jerusalem of the first volume of Klausner’s ­epoch-making Hebrew-language eponymous work, a virtually lifelong project that encompassed six volumes and took two more decades to appear in full. Although now regarded as quaint at best in its Romantic nationalism and ideologically overdetermined and naïve analysis, it remains the best bio-bibliographical source on the Jewish Enlightenment as a whole, as well as its early nationalist and Zionist successors. And since Klausner, literally thousands of works have been published on the Russian Haskalah in Hebrew, English, German, Russian, Yiddish, and other tongues. Great scholars such as the recently deceased Shmuel Werses of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem spent their entire scholarly lives studying the Hebrew Enlightenment movement – in Werses’ case from his first article in 1940 to his last, published posthumously after his death in 2010, contributing almost sixty monographs and books on the subject. We have biographies of virtually every major figure in the Jewish Enlightenment movement in tsarist Russia; analyses of the social history of its thinkers alongside their political and ideological beliefs and literary works; and, of course, as in every scholarly subject that merits the name,  a highly contentious internecine scholarly



2 “Russkoe musul’manstvo”, in I. B. Gasprinskii, Rossiia i vostok (Kazan, 1993), 18–22.

The Jewish and Muslim Enlightenments in Tsarist Russia  35

warfare where one side declares the other utterly wrong in its basic understanding of its subject, and vice versa; and even a lively recent tome denying the very definition of the Haskalah as a movement for Enlightenment.3 In sharp contrast, the scholarship on the Islamic Enlightenment in Russia is very thin; turn to virtually any book or article on the subject and you will find a statement of the insufficiency of the field and hence of our collective knowledge of the subject: take, for example, the comment by Ingeborg Baldauf of the Humboldt University in Berlin in an article published in 2001 in the journal Die Welt des Islams: speaking of the Central Asian iteration of the Muslim Enlightenment movement in the Russian Empire, known as Jadidism (to which I shall presently return), she writes: Central Asian Jadidism like many other -isms, tends to fade away the more we scrutinize it. There is nothing surprising in this; hardly anyone would expect to find a clearcut, persistent and uniform profile for a social phenomenon which existed, roughly speaking, for three decades, and over an area that included Kabul and ­A lmaty, Bukhara and Kashgar, Samarkand and Tashkent. Furthermore, the individuals who were part of the phenomenon came from very different socio-economic and educational backgrounds, and though they shared basic beliefs and goals, we see that they followed very different paths. Perhaps it is still too early to try and define what Central Asian Jadidism was. Scholarly research is still in its infancy, and what little flawed knowledge we possess is too readily obscured and engulfed by ad hoc judgment and fixed ideology.4

And as one of the contributors to this volume, Adeeb Khalid of Carlton College, has further explained, again speaking about Central Asia: The Jadids […] were far from alone in the Muslim world in this period in re-revaluating their cultural heritage under the exigencies of modernity. Jadidism […] had much in common with similar modernist movements popular among intellectuals throughout the Muslim world. The aim of such movements was nothing less than to reconcile Islam with a modernity they very much admired. But whereas similar modernist movements in India, the Ottoman lands, Iran, Egypt, and Algeria have received extensive scholarly attention, Jadidism, especially in its Central Asian form, remains virtually unknown. The volume of Western scholarship on tsarist Central Asia is slim, and work on Jadidism forms only a small part of it. Until very recently (writing in 1998) specialist treatments of the subject were almost entirely lacking, and one was left to retrieve Jadidism from brief passages widely scattered in broad-ranging synthetic works that subordinated Jadidism to much broader themes.5

3 Litvak, O., Haskalah: The Romantic Movement in Judaism (New Brunswick, 2012). 4 Baldauf, I., “Jadidism in Central Asia within Reformism and Modernism in the Muslim World”, Die Welt des Islams 41 (2001), 72–88, on p. 72. 5 Khalid, A., The Politics of Muslim Cultural Reform: Jadidism in Central Asia (Berkeley, 1998), 2–3.

36  Michael Stanislawski And, he continues to explain, Soviet scholarship on the phenomenon (much more extensive, after the 1930s, for rather obvious reasons, than on the Jewish Enlightenment) obscured more than they revealed by subjecting the story of Jadidism and its opponents to  a “Marxist metanarrative of class competition – the traditionalists as representatives of the feudal colonial order, whereas the Jadids were mouthpieces of a rising nationalist bourgeoisie – an utterly misleading analysis”.6 Part of the problem is quite simply the geographical and demographic extent of the Muslim community vs. the Jewish: its territorial reach – which, as Gasprinskii mentioned in the quotation above, extended from Lithuania through the Crimea to the Caucasus and thence to the vast stretches of Central Asia,  a huge expanse into which many Pales of Jewish Settlement could be compressed and which encompassed communities with radically different historical experiences, including radically different encounters with Enlightenment thought and ideology  – was much greater than that of the Jewish one. Thus, once more to quote Khalid, absolutely paralleling the argument now regnant in the literature that there is not one European Enlightenment but many, “once it is located in society, Jadidism does not appear as an undifferentiated intellectual movement emanating from a well-defined center to the periphery. Instead, there were many Jadidisms in the Russian empire, each with its own concerns rooted in local social struggles”.7 Against this backdrop, it would therefore be irresponsible for me, an outsider to the study of the languages and primary sources of the Muslim communities in tsarist Russia, to essay a thoroughgoing comparison between the Muslim Enlightenment tout court and the Haskalah. What I hope to do instead is to begin the comparison – never yet attempted in the scholarly literature! – by focusing my analysis of the former case on the above-mentioned Ismail Bey Gasprinskii, a figure who first attracted my attention over thirty years ago when I came across his name and activities in Serge Zenkovsky’s Pan-Turkism and Islam in Russia, published by Harvard University Press in 1967, and whom I have been looking for a reason to study more closely since then (now realizing, to my distress, that Zenkovsky’s analysis was profoundly misleading). I shall then compare and contrast Gasprinskii with Judah Leib Gordon, whom I know rather well, having published a biography of him twenty-five years ago. First, a brief biography of both figures: Judah Leib Gordon (known to subsequent generations by his Hebrew acronym YALAG, and in Russian as Lev ­Osipovich Gordon) was born in Vilnius (then known by its official Russian name as Vil’na) in 1830 to a modest middle-class family and received a thoroughly traditional Jewish education that grounded him in the Bible, the Talmud, and rabbinic literature as a whole. To this he added self-taught Russian and

6 Khalid, A., The Politics of Muslim Cultural Reform, 5. 7 Khalid, A., The Politics of Muslim Cultural Reform, 5.

The Jewish and Muslim Enlightenments in Tsarist Russia  37

German to the point of fluency and a deep knowledge of contemporary Russian, and to a lesser but still impressive extent, German literature. As a teenager he became close to, and was profoundly influenced by, the small circle of advocates of the Haskalah – particularly the Hebrew poet Adam ha-Kohen (Avraham Dov Lebensohn) and his exceptionally talented son Mikhah Yosef Lebensohn, who died at a tragically young age but who succeeded in writing poetry that broke out of the stultified and rigid modalities of the older Hebrew Haskalah. Following this model, Gordon began to write both poetry and prose in Hebrew advocating the goals of the Enlightenment movement. Though he continued to write prose for the rest of his life – and for a while was the editor of the most important vehicle of Hebrew prose writing of the nineteenth century, the newspaper Ha-Meliz (The Herald), published in St. Petersburg from 1870 to 1903 – he soon found his own unique voice in poetry. His first published collection of verse was Ahavat David u-Mikhal (The Love of David and Michal) (1856), a reworking of the Biblical account of the love of King David and his wife Michal. This was followed by Mishlei Yehuda (The Parables of Judah) in 1859, and then by a steady and seemingly ceaseless stream of poetry in the next decades, essentially in three registers: short polemical poems such as “Awake My People” clearly advocating the ideology of the Haskalah – the economic, political, and religious reformation of Russian Jewry on the model of West European Jewry; long narrative poems that either reworked themes in Biblical literature or told newly wrought tales based on East European Jewish realities, again in service of Enlightenment ideals; or pithy satirical verses aimed at traditional norms in Jewish society of the time. (In this last genre Gordon also wrote poems in Yiddish, a language he, like almost all maskilim of the age, despised as a jargon that kept East European Jews from adapting to modern life and sensibilities.) Gordon’s poems reflected the reality he was enmeshed in for all of his adult life. First, he attended, served as a teacher in, and then as the director of, a number of government schools for Russian-Jewish children in which Judaic subjects were taught alongside the basic curriculum of “general studies” consisting of arithmetic, geography, history, the Russian and, at times, also German languages. In these same years Gordon founded and led several government-funded schools for Jewish girls, in which, in addition to the curriculum just noted, typical subjects of bourgeois female education such as French, music, and sewing, were added. (The crucial story of both Judah Leib Gordon’s and ­Ismail Bey Gasprinskii’s counter-cultural battles for the education of girls, and Gordon’s battle for the emancipation of Jewish women, as demonstrated in one of his most famous poems, Kozo shel yud, is yet to be told, and would serve as a topic of a separate study.) From these provincial schools Gordon moved on to St. Peters­burg, where he served both as secretary of the St. Petersburg Jewish community and of the empire-wide Society for the Promotion of Culture among the Jews, a philanthropic movement funded largely by the wealthiest Jewish family in the Rus-

38  Michael Stanislawski sian Empire, the Barons Guenzburg. Despite – or perhaps because of – his high position in the capital’s Jewish community, Gordon’s poetic work brought forth fierce opposition to him on the part of the traditional and rabbinic leaders of Russian Jewry, and in March 1879, he was denounced to the authorities as a revolutionary, arrested, and soon sentenced to exile in the interior of Russia, where he spent six months of imprisonment in exceedingly harsh material conditions. This experience, however, only served to deepen his hostility to traditional Jewish society in Eastern Europe, which he continued to express in his poetry and prose. Soon, two new ideologies that were spreading rapidly in Russian Jewry – socialism and modern Jewish nationalism – challenged his political liberalism, his commitment to religious reform, and his profound belief in the need, and the possibility, for the Jews to modernize in the Diaspora rather than move to ­Palestine. Gordon remained steadfastly committed to these principles, rendering him exceedingly controversial among his former allies – though at times he succumbed to despair – until his death in 1892. The life story of Ismail Bey Gasprinskii/Gaspirali follows a similar, though not entirely parallel path.8 He was born in 1851 in the village of Avci near Bakhchysarai in Crimea, his last name derived from Gaspra, a village close to Yalta in which his father was born. His mother was the daughter of a Tatar nobleman, his father a lieutenant of the Russian Imperial army who, in recognition of his service, was endowed with a noble title in 1854. At the age of eight, young Ismail was enrolled in the Simferopol Male Gymnasium, where he studied for two years before moving on to the Military Academy in Moscow from 1865–7. Here his home  – quite astonishingly  – was none other than that of M. N. Katkov, the famous conservative editor of the newspaper Moskovskie Vedemosti (Moscow News) in which Gasprinskii first encountered the ideas of ­Russian nationalism and Pan-Slavism. Here the sources are of mixed opinion: some say that he viewed Katkov’s views positively, others that he responded to them by attempting to leave for Ottoman Turkey to join the Turkish forces in the struggle to put down  a Greek rebellion on Crete, but was arrested by the Russian police for trying to leave the country without authorization and returned to his family in Bakhchysarai. What is inarguable is that in 1868 (at the ripe old age of seventeen!), his pedagogic career began: he became an instructor of the Russian language at several traditional Muslim schools (medrese) in the Crimea, but within three years was forced to resign because of his criticism of the traditional methods of education and his views on the need for reform of Muslim, and specifically, Tatar, education. As his best biographer, Azade-Ayse Rorlich, explains:

8 This brief biography generally follows Bowman, I., “The Life of Ismail Bey Gaspirali, A Timeline”, http://www.iccrimea.org/gaspirali/gasptimeline.html, accessed July 15, 2014.

The Jewish and Muslim Enlightenments in Tsarist Russia  39

He became convinced of the need to adopt new methodological approaches in order to restructure the curriculum so as to include secular subjects such as biology, physics, geography, and mathematics; at the same time he devoted many hours to convincing his students as well as their parents of the importance of science and the need to acquire scientific knowledge, of the compatibility of science and religion, arguing that religion itself was “science about God”.9

All this was happening at the precise time that the Russian Government decided to open elementary “Russian-native” schools for the Muslims of the Empire, where the language of instruction would be Russian, though students would also be taught what was called zakon bozhii, i. e., religion. This was exactly what had happened to the Jewish population of the empire twenty-one years earlier, in 1847, when a state-sponsored network of schools for Jewish boys, in which the language of instruction was Russian and in which Judaism was taught as ­zakon bozhii, was established – i. e. the schools in which, as already mentioned, ­Gordon taught for several years.10 After a couple of years, however, Gasprinskii decided to go abroad to further his education, traveling to Vienna, Munich, and Stuttgart en route to Paris where he studied the French language and worked for the great writer Ivan Turgenev. It was on the basis of his European travels that he later wrote the fascinating French and African Letters, an authentic Muslim parallel, if you will, to Montesquieu’s Persian Letters (though inevitably without their literary brilliance or intensely negative appraisal of French society). Strangely, it is this book that is the only one of Gasprinskii’s that has been translated into English – a highly interesting, but far from typical, product of his pen. In any event, from Paris he moved on to I­ stanbul where he lived for a year and reportedly was turned down for admission to the Imperial War College. At this point he returned to the Crimea, where he spent the next several years teaching once more, but where he also decided to enter into local politics, holding several minor positions before becoming elected mayor of Bakhchysarai in 1879, a position he held for the next five years. It is at this point that Gasprinskii undertook the most important and in­ fluential move of his career: with the financial aid of his wife’s wealthy Kazan Tatar family, he began publishing the first newspaper aimed at the Muslims of the Russian Empire. A bilingual Turkic/Russian newspaper, it was called Terjüman/Perevodchik or, The Translator, and first appeared on April 10, 1883, the 100th anniversary of the annexation of the Crimea by Catherine the Great. A brief quotation from the first issue of Terjüman should suffice to help understand its intellectual and political policies: 9 Rorlich, A., “Introduction to Ismail Bey Gasprinskii”, French and African Letters (Istan­ bul, 2008), 14. 10 See my Tsar Nicholas I and the Jews: The Transformation of Russian-Jewish Society, 1825–1855 (Philadelphia, 1983), 97–110.

40  Michael Stanislawski May God make Terjüman a servant of truth and a mirror of our times. May it be the servant of enlightenment and artistic development by preaching verity and honesty? May we finally get to know our holy motherland and may the Interpreter make the wisdom of our age their own. And may the Translator translate our prayers for the Tsar. Ours is a wondrous century. We must understand it!

Indeed, the ability of readers to understand this newspaper is the subject of some dispute in the scholarly literature: Gasprinskii’s goal was to write in a sim­plified language which could be understood by Turkic readers anywhere, a simplified Ottoman Turkish with many Crimean Tatar dialect additions. To what extent this mélange could be understood by other Muslims throughout the empire, particularly in Central Asia, is not yet resolved in the scholarship, though by all accounts, this newspaper served as one of the most important vehicles of Gasprinskii’s ideology for decades, achieving huge popularity not only throughout the Muslim communities in the Russian Empire but also in Egypt, India, and Iran. The other vehicle was the one for which he received the most, and justified, fame: the creation of a new reformed school teaching system called “jadid”, which comes from the term usul-i-jadid meaning “new method”. From the start of his career, Gasprinskii attacked as outdated and deleterious the traditional method of instruction in the maktabs – of learning Arabic by rote, reciting verses of the Quran and hadith without understanding their meaning. (This, once more, is an exact parallel to the Haskalah’s critique of the traditional kheyder, the Jewish elementary school.) As Alan Fisher, one of the most important scholars of the Crimean Tatars, writes: Usul-i-jadid referred originally to the new method of instruction of language – phonetic transcription, simplified grammar, and simplified vocabulary. It soon came to mean the style of instruction in all subjects used in the maktab (elementary school) with an expanded curriculum as well as a new method of teaching. The curriculum at the maktab was to include the traditional Muslim elements – Qur’an, calligraphy, Islamic traditions, but also a genuine ability to read in Arabic. But beyond these subjects [Gasprinskii] believed a student should study the grammar and language of his native language, the history of Islam, geography, arithmetic, etc. He was convinced that no genuine renewal of Turkic-Tatar Islamic society was conceivable without ‘an army of learned men’ and an enlightened public.11

For the next several decades, Gasprinskii presided over the expansion of the jadid school system throughout the empire. The number of such schools by the time of Gasprinskii’s death in 1914 is disputed, but the most commonly agreed upon is 5,000. (This is in sharp distinction to the very small number of the statesponsored schools for “native” children to survive through the decades, again 11 Fisher, A. W., “A Model Leader for Asia, Ismail Gaspirali”, in E. A. Allworth (ed.), The Tatars of Crimea: Return to the Homeland (Durham, 1998), 29–47, on pp. 39–40.

The Jewish and Muslim Enlightenments in Tsarist Russia  41

an exact parallel to the fate of the state-sponsored schools for Jewish children in which Gordon taught. Moreover, as already noted, central to both Gasprinskii’s and Gordon’s pedagogical and reformist armor was an insistence on the education of girls, and the founding of schools to teach them in ways that would both challenge traditional gender norms but be able to survive in the face of opposition to the very concept of the education of girls in the forms of traditional Islam and traditional Judaism in the Russian Empire.) Be that as it may, in the last decades of his life Gasprinskii took part in some of the earliest, and ultimately unsuccessful, attempts to forge a political movement unifying all of the Muslims of the Empire, including one in Bakhchysarai in February 1914 which he attended in ill health, dying soon thereafter on September 11, 1914. As is, I think, self-evident, the similarities between Gasprinskii’s and G ­ ordon’s lives are patent and revealing, but so are their differences: first, Gasprinskii hailed, as we have seen, from an upper-class family with close ties to the Russian army, and was educated in two elite Russian-language schools, including the Moscow Military Academy, whereas Gordon received a traditional Jewish education, with all its faults but also its strengths. Thus, Gordon’s immersion in Biblical and Rabbinic learning and culture was far more intense than Gasprinskii’s in traditional Muslim teachings. Gordon’s Hebrew poetry is chock-full of virtually continuous allusions to Biblical and Talmudic quotations and tropes, which he then most often proceeded to subvert by his innovative, highly heterodox interpretations. Although he came to know Russian well and write in it as a nearnative, and advocated that all Jews in the Empire learn the language and its culture, that goal was secondary to his attempt, primarily through poetry, to revive the Hebrew language and make it a vehicle of modernist artistic sensibility. He thus spearheaded a thoroughgoing cultural revolution of the Jews that involved a venomous attack on the rabbinical leadership of Russian Jewry, calling them vipers, parasites, and worse. In contrast, although Gasprinskii’s calls for a radical reform of the traditional maktab through “jadid” did elicit strong opposition from the clerical leadership of Muslim society, he refrained from any overt call for a thoroughgoing religious reform within Islam, believing that his educational and journalistic efforts would effectively do the trick. Perhaps also  a result of their different backgrounds and familial relationship to the Russian language, Russian society, and even the Russian army, ­Gasprinskii was by far a more militant and consistent supporter of the Russian Empire, including not only praising its colonial expansion into Central Asia and other primarily Muslim regions, but calling for Russia itself to overtake the ­Ottoman Empire as the leading Muslim state in the world! Thus, already in Russkoe musl’manstvo, Gasprinskii wrote: 500 years ago, on the Kulikov field, there was irrevocably decided the fate and history of the subjection of northern and eastern Muslims, and in particular the Turko-

42  Michael Stanislawski Tatar tribes, to the Russian tribe. After centuries of attempts and wars…step-by-step Russian power and governance was extended to the Turko-Tatar tribes. As a result of historical necessity the kingdoms of Riazan, Kazan, Astrakhan, Siberia, Crimea, and later that of Central Asia were added to the expanding Rus’ state, and, it is our view that Russia has not yet achieved its historical, natural borders. We believe that sooner or later, Russia will include all the Turko-Tatar tribes, and will extend to all the areas in which Turko-Tatars live in Asia. The border, the area dividing Turkmenia and Central Asia into two parts – one Russian and one non-Russian, might at the moment be politically necessary but is unnatural…. We believe that in the not-too-distant future, Russia is fated to be one of the most important Muslim states – a fact that, in my view, does not lessen in the least its importance as a Christian power.12

And this jingoist celebration extended to the internal policy of the Russian state in regard to both the Muslim subjects of the tsar and the other minority populations: At present, there are 10 million Turko-Tatars, practicing one religion, speaking one language, sharing one way of living and traditions. In many places they live among Russians and form one of the strongest and most united nationalities of our shared fatherland. […]According to the laws of our Fatherland, Russian Muslims enjoy equal rights with the native Russian population and in some cases, relating to their social and religious life, even more rights and privileges. Observation and travels have convinced me, that no other nation so humanely and sincerely treats its non-native population as our older brother, the Russians!13

Interestingly, this rather astonishing last paragraph, written in the summer of 1881, necessitated a footnote: “The recent horrible events of persecution of Jews in Southern Russia, caused by specific circumstances, cannot change our view of this fact.”14 To my knowledge Gasprinskii never returned to elaborate on this rather cryptic remark – the only other mentions of Jews I could find in all of his writings was a repeated remark that the “Jews, the Hindus, the Buddhists” are well ahead of the Muslims in their engagement with Enlightenment and modernity. What he regarded as the specific circumstances that caused the pogroms of 1881 we shall never know. To be fair, in some of Gasprinskii’s writings he elucidated a somewhat more nuanced understanding of the minority policy of the tsarist state, hoping that the government would treat its Muslim subjects more on the order of policy towards Finland rather than its treatment of Poland  – sblizhenie, again, rather the new calque, assimiliatsiia. But this distinction harbored no critique, even oblique, of Russia’s colonial policies, and Gasprinskii’s utter loyalty to the t­ sarist 12 Gasprinskii, I. B., “Russkoe musul’manstvo”, 17. 13 Gasprinskii, I. B., “Russkoe musul’manstvo”, 18. 14 Gasprinskii, I. B., “Russkoe musul’manstvo”, 23.

The Jewish and Muslim Enlightenments in Tsarist Russia  43

empire and its aggressive imperialism continued well into the first decade of the twentieth century and up to the debacle set in motion by the events of August 1914, just a month before his death. In sharp contrast, although Gordon’s loyalty to the Russian state was profound, at least until the emergence of the pogroms of 1881/82, that loyalty was entirely instrumental and even, one might say, fungible: the Jews, he believed, must be loyal to the rulers of whatever country they lived in, whether that be tsar, king, emperor, president, or prime minister. One gets a sense from his writings that he did feel a bit more of a personal loyalty to Alexander II, the Liberator tsar, since he personified the modernization of the Russian Empire that Gordon, like all the Westernizers in the Russian intelligentsia, believed was not only necessary but ineluctable. After Alexander II’s assassination by revolutionary terrorists on the streets of St. Petersburg on March 1, 1881, Gordon was asked by Baron Guenzburg to compose the official response of the Russian-Jewish community to the murder of the tsar. Gordon responded in characteristic f­ashion with an idiosyncratic and innovative application of  a biblical verse: on the wreath of flowers sent by the leaders of Russian Jewry to the emperor’s funeral Gordon ordered to be inscribed the first half of Lamentations 4:20, which reads: “The breath of our lord, the Lord’s appointed, was captured in its traps.” Not only was the sentiment appropriate, for the verse continues, “He in whose shade we had thought to live among the nations”, but also, the first letters of each word of the Hebrew original  – “Ruah Opeinu Meshiah Adonai Nilkad B ­ e-shehihatam”  – spell out none other than Romanov!15 However, within the next few years, the sheer force of the violence against Jews and the new, reactionary government’s response of essentially blaming the victims rather than the perpetrators, led Gordon slowly to lose hope in his lifelong belief in the future of the Jews in the Russian Empire. But not, I must insist, on the Enlightenment humanism twinned with political Liberalism that defined his Weltanschauung. By the mid-1880s, Gordon’s preferred solution to the plight of Russian Jewry was highly idiosyncratic in an increasingly politicized and radicalized political environment: he called for the mass emigration of Jews to America, where they could achieve the social, political, and cultural freedoms demanded by the Enlightenment and tragically traduced by the tsarist state. Here, too, there is an interesting comparison between Gordon and Gas­ prinskii: although scholars have tried to twist their words into statements of support for the newfound nationalist movements among the Jews and Muslims of the last quarter of the Russian Empire, both Gordon and Gasprinskii steadfastly opposed these new movements (and in the case of Gasprinskii, the equally problematic Pan-Turkic idea), fundamentally because they denied the alpha and omega of the Enlightenment disposition, the universality of humankind inde 15 Stanislawski, M., For Whom Do I Toil, 156–7.

44  Michael Stanislawski pendent of ethnic, religious, and cultural differences. In one of my favorites of his prose pieces, a feuilleton Gordon published in 1885 after being declared an antinationalist traitor by one of the most important new nationalist Hebrew writers, he responded: Returning to the Jewish street after  a long absence, he found himself accosted by armed guards, with Jewish faces but dressed like Cossacks. At first he was thrilled by the sight of armed Jewish policemen, but his enthusiasm dimmed when they asked him to produce  a document testifying to his nationalism. What’s that, he queried. I don’t understand the word ‘nationalism.’ (leumiyut) I can’t find it listed in the Biblical concordance or in any Hebrew dictionary. A nationalistic Jew, the Hebrew ­Cossacks answered, is one who loves his nation. But I should qualify – all my life I’ve demonstrated my love for my nation. Not enough, answered the militia: you have to have a document, a membership card, to prove you’re one of us. But you’ve gotten it all wrong, Gordon’s semi-fictional alter ego proceeded, what you call nationalism is natural to anyone from birth, it is congenital, unselfconscious  – but you have clothed this feeling in  a new garb by mimicking the Slavophiles who believe that true Russianness consists in rejecting the reforms of Peter the Great, celebrating the most absurd and repugnant peasant customs, retreating from Western culture into the isolation of ancient Rus’. But the Slavophiles are wrong, dreadfully harmful to the future of Russia, and you Jewish Slavophiles are equally harmful to the future of the Jews.16

Compare this with the analysis by Brian Glyn Williams of the University of Massachusetts on Gasprinskii and nationalism: that although Gasprinskii often spoke of the need for “unity” among all the Muslims of the Russian state, It should be stated here that [these] calls for linguistic and cultural unity among the Turkic peoples of the Russian Empire did not have an overtly political tone and ­(Gaspirali remained) adamantly opposed to confrontation with the Tsarist regime. It is not surprising then that by the 20th century, Gaspirali had come out against the rise of narrowly focused nationalist movements among the various Turkic peoples of the Empire. Gaspirali felt that these narrowly defined nationalist movements threatened the unity of the ‘greater Turkic nation.’ On many occasions, in fact, ­Gaspirali spoke out against the ‘narrow nationalism’ and ‘particularlism’ which he felt was unnecessarily antagonistic toward the Tsarist regime and detrimental to Turkic unity.17

In due course, Williams continued, Gasprinskii’s idea of a unified Turkic nation lost support among  a new generation of Russian Muslims who saw their fate linked to their more immediate territories, which could be constructed in the 16 Stanislawski, M., For Whom Do I Toil, 217–218. 17 Williams, B. G., “Reinterpreting Ismail Gaspirali’s Legacy. Crimean Atatürk, Russian Collaborator or Pan-Turkist Threat to the Russian Empire?” http://www.iccrimea.org/ gaspirali/legacy.html, p.10, accessed on July 15, 2014.

The Jewish and Muslim Enlightenments in Tsarist Russia  45

common imagination as “national homelands”. In this respect, Gasprinskii can hardly be considered the “founding father” of a narrowly defined Tatar nation of the Crimea – he was, on the contrary, opposed to such a development. For Gordon, the battle was not only against this kind of particularistic nationalism, but also against the rapidly spreading ideas of socialism within the Jewish community, and particularly its youth, which Gordon viscerally and vociferously regarded as a frightful rejection of Liberal notions of individualism and freedom. However, as I have argued several times in the past, although the Haskalah as a movement gradually petered away in the last decades of the tsarist empire, vast numbers of Russia’s Jews – and here I would add, I hope not too irresponsibly, Muslims as well – were living with one foot in their tradition and the other outside of it, striving at times tentatively, at times stridently, more often than not, unselfconsciously, to reconcile the way of lives of their parents with the attractions and challenges of modern existence. Central to this quest was the overarching dilemma of how to cope with the mundane demands of daily life in a dignified fashion: how to be productive, or at least self-sustaining, members of society at large without attempting to escape from or revolutionize that society; how to communicate in the muddle of linguistic options available to them, and, not least of all, how to preserve or transform the faith of their mothers and the observances of their fathers. This does not mean that the vast majority of Russia’s Jews or Muslims ever became adherents of the Haskalah on the one hand, or Jadidism, on the other, but only that the basic quest for the educational and religious reform of their population continued to occupy center stage in the lives of many, if not most, Jews and Muslims in the Russian Empire. And it did so well past the lifetime not only of Gordon but also of Gasprinskii, as their respective communities confronted utterly new and egregious forms of terror, deportation, mass starvation, murder, and genocide – all based precisely on the denial of the basic values, ideals, and beliefs of the Enlightenment, to which Judah Leib Gordon and Ismail Bey Gasprinskii dedicated their lives.

Bibliography Baldauf, I., “Jadidism in Central Asia within Reformism and Modernism in the Muslim World”, Die Welt des Islams 41 (2001), 72–88. Bowman, I., “The Life of Ismail Bey Gaspirali, A Timeline”, http://www.iccrimea.org/gaspirali/ gasptimeline.html, accessed July 15, 2014. Fisher, A. W., “A Model Leader for Asia, Ismail Gaspirali”, in E. A. Allworth (ed.), The Tatars of Crimea: Return to the Homeland (Durham 1998), 29–47. Gasprinskii, I. B., Rossiia i vostok (Kazan, 1993). Litvak, O., Haskalah: The Romantic Movement in Judaism (New Brunswick, 2012). Rorlich, A., “Introduction to Ismail Bey Gasprinskii”, French and African Letters (Istanbul, 2008), 13–31.

46  Michael Stanislawski Stanislawski, M., For Whom Do I Toil? Judah Leib Gordon and the Crisis of Russian Jewry (New York/Oxford, 1988). Stanislawski, M., Tsar Nicholas I and the Jews: The Transformation of Russian-Jewish Society, 1825–1855 (Philadelphia, 1983). Williams, B. G., “Reinterpreting Ismail Gaspirali’s Legacy. Crimean Atatürk, Russian Collaborator or Pan-Turkist Threat to the Russian Empire?” http://www.iccrimea.org/gaspirali/ legacy.html, accessed on July 15, 2014.

Franziska Davies

Confessional Policies toward Jews and Muslims in the Russian Empire and the Case of the Army

Historians of the Russian Empire have pointed to the importance of religion as a category which the state administration used to classify, rule, and discipline its subjects. In spite of the ever-growing importance of ethnicity as an identity marker, religion nonetheless remained central to governmental practices until the end of the tsarist regime. Paul Werth has recently shown how Russia had produced a “multiconfessional establishment” to govern her various “foreign faiths” by the mid-nineteenth century.1 The Russian state appointed religious agents to function as interlocutors between the imperial state and various non-Orthodox communities. In the process, Russia placed most of her subjects under the jurisdiction of one of these agents, who were subordinated to the ­Directorate of the Foreign Confessions (later the Department for Foreign Faiths) located in the Ministry of Internal Affairs.2 The foundations for this policy were laid by Empress Catherine II in the late eighteenth century. Her policy aim of not just recognizing, but institutionalizing non-Orthodox faiths, was twofold. For one thing, Catherine was acting out of simple necessity: the partitions of Poland rendered some kind of control over Catholicism, Judaism and the Greek-Catholic Church imperative, as did the annexation of the Crimea with regard to Islam. Secondly, Catherine held the view that religion could be a source of discipline and order.3 But the origins of the Russian Empire as a “confessional state” go back further. The model for the integration of non-Orthodox religions into the state structure was in fact Tsar Peter I’s policy towards the Russian Orthodox Church. In 1721, he abolished the patriarchate in Moscow and replaced it with the Holy Synod in an attempt to bring the church under the firm control of the state.4

1 Werth, P. W., The Tsar’s Foreign Faiths: Toleration and the Fate of Religious Freedom in Imperial Russia (Oxford, 2014). See 46–73 for an excellent overview of this process. 2 Werth, Foreign Faiths, 47, 54–55. For a short while the directorate was located in the Ministry of Education. 3 Werth, Foreign Faiths, 49; Crews, R. D., “Empire and the Confessional State: Islam and Religious Politics in Nineteenth-Century Russia”, The American Historical Review 108:1 (2003), 50–83, esp. on pp. 54–55. 4 Werth, Foreign faiths, 48.

48  Franziska Davies Among Russia’s many “foreign faiths”, Judaism and Islam were the largest non-Christian ones.5 Robert Crews has argued that they “presented the state with very similar dilemmas”, to which the Russian state formulated similar responses.6 More specifically, he points to the tendency of the imperial state to support conservative forces among Jewish and Muslim communities whose ­authority was challenged by reformist and secularist movements in the second half of the nineteenth and the early twentieth century.7 With regard to the state’s institutional policy toward Jews and Muslims, one may argue that it merely fit the general tendency of the Russian state to rule its subjects through religious mediators. But in light of the attacks on their religions in the eighteenth century, Jews and Muslims had perhaps the most to gain from the integration of their communities into the administrative structures of the state.8 Judaism implicitly gained state recognition in the nineteenth century after Jews had been banned from residing in Russia in 1742 – albeit at a moment when there were hardly any Jews in the Russian Empire anyway. Muslims experienced an onslaught on their religion through the aggressive missionary campaigns in the Volga Region in the mid-eighteenth century. Catherine’s policy enabled a cultural and religious Muslim revival in the region.9 But there were also some differences in Russia’s “confessional” policies toward Jews and Muslims in this respect. This article seeks to carve out some of these differences by first comparing the general process of institutionalization Islam and Judaism experienced in the late eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. It also examines cases, in which policies towards Jews served as a model for Muslims and vice versa. What were the state administration’s goals? To what ­extent were these policies successful instruments of imperial rule? How did Jews and Muslims respond to them? In this context the educational policies toward Jews and Muslims play an important role. The second part of the article looks at the example of the army and compares the different standing of Islam and Ju 5 In the census of 1897 Muslims figured as the second largest confessional group after Orthodox Christians; see: Roth, B., Dokumentation: Religionen/Konfessionen. in: H.  Bauer/A. Kappeler/B. Roth, Brigitte (ed.), Die Nationalitäten des Russischen  Reiches in der Volkszählung von 1897: A: Quellenkritische Dokumentation und Datenhandbuch, 2 vols. (Stuttgart, 1991), 285–323, here on p. 317; Nathans, B., Beyond the Pale: The Jewish Encounter with Late Imperial Russia (Berkeley, 2002), 5. Nathans contends that in fact the Jews were the largest non-Christian group in the Russian Empire due to the Muslims’ cultural diversity; see footnote 14 on page 5. 6 Crews, Empire and the Confessional State, 63. 7 Crews, Empire and the Confessional State, 52. This view is challenged by Vladimir Levin in the present volume. 8 Werth, Foreign Faiths, 72. 9 Werth, Foreign Faiths, 72–73. On the revival of Muslim culture after the change of policy under Catherine II, see: Noack, C., Muslimischer Nationalismus im russischen Reich. Nations­ bildung und Nationalbewegung bei Tataren und Baschkiren. 1861–1917 (Stuttgart, 2000), 62–76.

Confessional Policies toward Jews and Muslims in the Russian Empire  49

daism in this particular imperial institution. Specifically, it examines the status of Jewish and Muslim military chaplains. The confessional policies of the late eighteenth century structured the management of Islam and Judaism in the armed forces and eventually led to the official recognition of Islam in the military, while such a status was denied to Judaism. Since not all of Russia’s Muslim subjects were integrated into the empire’s “multi-confessional” establishment or into the imperial army, the article primarily focuses on Russia’s policies toward the Muslim population of the Volga-Ural region.

Institutionalizing and transforming Islam and Judaism: similarities and differences The Muslim communities in the Volga-Ural Region and the Crimea were among the first non-Orthodox subjects of the Russian Empire to profit from Catherine II’s policies to institutionalize non-Orthodox religions and to endow them with a church-like structure: the Orenburg Muslim Spiritual Assembly was founded in 1788 and was given jurisdiction in certain matters over the Muslim people of the Volga Region. It was headed by the Orenburg mufti, who was supported by a collegial body. The candidate for the post of the mufti was put forward by the Muslims and had to be reviewed by the Ministry of Internal Affairs and approved by the emperor.10 The assembly oversaw the work of the parish mullahs, who in turn were elected by their respective local communities. Their election had to be confirmed by the local state authorities and they were obliged to pass an exam with the Orenburg Muslim Assembly in order to prove their knowledge of the Islamic religion.11 A second muftiate was officially established in the Tauride Province in 1831.12 Although the second half of the nineteenth century saw a constant stream of reform initiatives, this basic structure of administering Islam remained more or less intact until the February Revolution of 1917. Some Muslim communities were integrated into the “multi-confessional” establishment much later, while others remained outside of it. As the Russian Empire expanded further throughout the nineteenth century, it acquired a vast number of new Muslim subjects in the Northern and Southern Caucasus and in Central Asia. Demands by the Orenburg mufti to extend his authority to the Northern Caucasus, Siberia, and some parts of European Russia were denied in 1906.13 10 Campbell, E., “The Autocracy and the Muslim Clergy in the Russian Empire (1850s– 1917)”, Russian Studies in History 44:2 (2005), 8–29, on p. 9. 11 Campbell, Autocracy, 9–10. 12 Campbell, Autocracy, 10. 13 Campbell, Autocracy, 19.

50  Franziska Davies In 1872, comparable institutions were established in the Southern Caucasus, but their influence remained very limited indeed.14 The Muslims of the Northern Caucasus and Central Asia were never integrated into Russia’s “multi-confessional establishment” partly because imperial administrators feared that it would strengthen Islam in the region.15 Russia gained her Jewish subjects much later than her first Muslim subjects. It was the conquest of the Muslim khanates of Kazan and Astrakhan in the sixteenth century that in some ways marked the beginning of Muscovy’s transformation into an empire. More than two centuries later, with the partitions of Poland in 1772, 1793, and 1795, the Russian Empire suddenly gained a large Jewish population. In the course of the first half of the nineteenth century, they too were – at least to some extent – integrated into the “confessional state”. The closest Jews came to having an institution comparable to that of the Orenburg muftiate was the Rabbinical Commission. The commission was established in 1848, and like all institutions related to the “foreign faiths”, was housed in the Department for Foreign Creeds in the Ministry of Internal Affairs. But in contrast to the Muslim assemblies, the Rabbinical Commission was not a permanent institution and only convened when ordered to by the Ministry. The result was that the commission only came together six times between 1848 and 1910.16 In comparison to the Orenburg Muslim Assembly its influence on government policy and institutional continuity was weaker. The bulk of its energy was devoted to cases dealing with family law.17 Perhaps for this reason it has received relatively little scholarly attention for a long time; only fairly recently did ChaeRan Freeze examine its significance for Jewish life in imperial Russia.18 The foundation of the Rabbinical Commission was recommended by the Jewish committee, which itself had been formed in 1840. The members of the committee were Russian bureaucrats whose task was to work out how the Jews of the Russian Empire could be turned into “useful” subjects. To their mind the key for the success of such a mission was religion, which they regarded as the constitutive factor of Jewish life. Thus, if the Jews were to change, their religious leadership had to change. Since the Jews would not accept the Russian state itself as the agent of reform, it was in the government’s interest to instead place Jewish religious leaders in the service of the state.19 The creation of the ­Rabbinical 14 Werth, Foreign Faiths, 70. On the unsuccessful attempts of the Russian state to create a Russified, loyal clergy in the Southern Caucasus, see: Mostashari, F., On the Religious Frontier: Tsarist Russia and Islam in the Caucasus (London, 2006), 115–119. 15 Campbell, Autocracy, 14–15; Werth, Foreign faiths, 70–71. 16 Freeze, Ch.R. Y., Jewish Marriage and Divorce in  Imperial Russia (Hanover/London, 2002), 86–87. 17 Freeze, Jewish Marriage, 91. 18 Freeze, Jewish Marriage, 83–84. 19 Freeze, Jewish Marriage, 83–84; Nathans, Beyond the Pale, 31–35.

Confessional Policies toward Jews and Muslims in the Russian Empire  51

Commission was one aspect of this policy. The second, more ambitious one was to create a Jewish “clergy” which would function as an ally of the Russian state in its mission to “enlighten” the Jews. As ChaeRan Freeze has pointed out, this amounted to a lot more than the traditional policy of co-opting local elites. In the case of the Jews, the state set out to “construct an entirely new institution of state rabbis”.20 In the mid-nineteenth century, the Jewish committee behind the creation of the Rabbinical Commission also initiated the establishment of two state-run seminaries for rabbis, which were opened in 1847 in Vil’na and ­Zhitomir. The rabbinical seminaries were part of a larger state project to offer Jews an alternative to their traditional religious learning and consisted of primary, secondary, and rabbinical schools, whose graduates qualified for admission to Russian universities.21 The achievements of the schools were ambivalent. At first rejected by the Jewish communities, they did eventually bring forth a new type of Jewish-Russian intelligentsia of which the graduates of the rabbinical seminaries were an important component.22 However, these seminaries were unable to fulfill the government’s ambitious goals of creating a new type of rabbi who was a loyal servant of the state and at the same time a spiritual leader in his respective community. The standards of religious education offered by the schools were low, and the graduates were few and lacked moral authority. They were regarded with skepticism in Jewish communities, so that many favored local rabbis instead. So poor was the record of the state rabbinical seminaries that the government decided to close them down in 1873. The government renounced its objective of bringing forth a new kind of Russian-Jewish rabbi who had enjoyed a religious as well as a secular education. Instead, it then tried to install rabbis who were, first and foremost, obedient to the state. But these men lacked proficiency in Jewish religion and law and were often met with outright hostility in their communities.23 Nonetheless, the office of the state rabbi came with certain powers which were shared by the recognized clerics of all denominations in the Russian Empire: since 1826, rabbis had been the guardians of the metricheskie knigi, in which births, deaths, marriages and divorces were registered.24 These registers were of vital importance to the state for governing its subjects, but also for the subjects themselves. For instance, only an officially registered marriage existed in the eyes of the state.25 Still, this kind of power only seems to have enhanced the negative reputation of the state rabbis as “incar 20 Freeze, Jewish Marriage, 95. 21 Klier, J., Imperial Russia’s Jewish Question, 1855–1881 (Cambridge, 1995), 6, 7, 222, 224, 229. 22 Klier, Jewish Question, 238. 23 Freeze, Jewish Marriage, 98–104. 24 Werth, P. W., “In the State’s Embrace? Civil Acts in an Imperial Order”, Kritika: Ex­ plorations in Russian and Eurasian History 73 (2006), 433–458. 25 Freeze, Jewish Marriage, 110–114.

52  Franziska Davies nations of the state”.26 They continued to compete with “spiritual rabbis” over moral authority in the late nineteenth century. With regard to policies toward a “clergy”, however ill-defined, Judaism and Islam did pose similar challenges to the Russian bureaucracy. State policies in turn triggered similar responses: in Muslim communities of the Volga-Ural region, “official” and “unofficial” religious leaders were often active within the same parish. However, the Russian bureaucracy was unable to measure the extent of such parallel structures.27 The legitimacy of the Orenburg Muslim ­Assembly was disputed by some Muslim scholars and later by the Tatar press.28 In the mid-nineteenth century, more than fifty years after its founding, the authority of the Orenburg Muslim Assembly within certain communities was still very limited.29 The Russian idea of a legally defined and hierarchically organized “clergy” had little in common with the informal character of religious leadership in Islam. As in the case of the rabbi, the position of an imam was equally unclear in the first decades of the nineteenth century. But, just like the rabbis, imams became vitally important to the administrators of the Russian Empire because they too were obliged to maintain the register books since 1829.30 Another similar development can be seen with regard to the importance state authorities ascribed to religious and secular education. One of the reasons why the moral authority of the Orenburg Muslim Assembly declined further in the second half of the nineteenth century was the government’s reluctance to appoint men of great religious learning to this post. Instead, it opted for candidates whose loyalty to the Russian state was beyond doubt. In 1864, Salimgarey Tevkelev was appointed to the post; though he had distinguished himself in the Russian army, he did not possess a religious education, which was also true of his successor, Mukhamed’yar Sultanov. But both men had a good command of the Russian language.31 Accordingly, there were numerous attempts by the authorities to make Russian language skills a prerequisite for the appointment of any “official” imam; a corresponding decree was issued in 1863, only to be taken back three years later. A second attempt was made in 1890, but again 26 Freeze, Jewish Marriage, 115. See also: Dohrn, V., Jüdische Eliten im Russischen Reich. Aufklärung und Integration im 19. Jahrhundert (Köln, 2008), 323–350. 27 Crews, R. D., For Prophet and Tsar: Islam and Empire in Russia and Centrals Asia (Cambridge, Mass., 2006), 100–101, 105. 28 Werth, Foreign faiths, 66. 29 Crews, For Prophet and Tsar, 104. 30 Crews, For Prophet and Tsar, 104. 31 Azamatov, D., “The Muftis of the Orenburg Spiritual Assembly in the 18th and 19th Centuries: The Struggle for Power in Russia’s Muslims Institution”, in A. von Kügelgen/ M. Kemper/A. J. Frank (ed.), Muslim culture in Russia and Central Asia from the 18th to the early 20th centuries: Inter-regional and inter-ethnic relations. 4 vols., vol. 2.  (Berlin, 1998), 355–84, on p. 381.

Confessional Policies toward Jews and Muslims in the Russian Empire  53

this policy failed. The resistance against making Russian obligatory for imams was strong and there were simply not enough candidates who could boast of these qualities.32 Nonetheless, the line of policy was equal to that applied to rabbis in roughly the same period, in which the importance given to religious education decreased and  a greater emphasis was instead placed on the Russian language and political obedience to the state. Indeed, at the beginning of the 1870s, the Ministry of Education launched  a schooling project for the Muslims of the Volga-Ural region which was in many ways so similar to the educational policy towards the Jews in the 1840s that it may even have served as a model.33 However, the creation of the schools must also be seen in the context of a changing perception of Islam among imperial elites and in the specific context of the Volga-Ural region. The prolonged war against the Muslim p ­ eoples of the Northern Caucasus, Muslim resistance in Algeria toward French author­ ities as well as waves of apostasy from Orthodoxy to Islam in the Volga region all contributed to a growing skepticism toward the Muslim clergy. In the VolgaUral region, local officials and especially Orthodox missionaries warned against the possibility of the Islamization and “Tatarization” of other n ­ on-Russian communities.34 The purpose of the Russian-Tatar-schools was, first and foremost, to acquaint Muslims with the Russian language. In this respect their aims were comparable to those of the primary and secondary Jewish state schools established in the 1840s.35 However, there was no Muslim equivalent to the rabbinical seminaries in Zhitomir and Vilna. While Muslim theology was included into the curricula of the Russian-Tatar schools, this seems to have been simply a concession to the fact that the schools would otherwise be rejected by the Muslim communities.36 The reaction of Muslim religious elites was hostile all the same, since – like the Jews – they too regarded these schools as an attack on their religion.37 The results of these schools were equally mixed. While attracting few students until the beginning of the twentieth century, they experienced a considerable re 32 Campbell, Autocracy, 12, 15. 33 Geraci, R., Window on the East: National and Imperial Identities in Late Tsarist Russia (Ithaca, 2001), 139. 34 Werth, P., At the Margins of Orthodoxy. Mission, Governance, and Confessional Politics in Russia’s Volga-Kama region, 1827–1905 (Ithaca, 2002), 177–199, esp. 180–183. For a detailed discussion of the various projects of schooling the non-Russian peoples in the middle Volga region, see Geraci, Window, 116–157 and Dowler, W., Classroom and Empire. The Politics of Schooling Russia’s Eastern Nationalities, 1860–1917 (London/Ithaca, 2001). 35 The Jewish state school system consisted of three tiers: primary and secondary schools and the state rabbinical schools, see: Klier, Jewish Question, 222–224. On the implications of these schools see Stanislawski, M., Tsar Nicolas and the Jews: The Transformation of RussianJewish Society, 1825–1855 (Philadelphia, 1983), 97–110. 36 Geraci, Window, 138, 145. 37 Geraci, Window, 140; Noack, Muslimischer Nationalismus, 155.

54  Franziska Davies vival after 1905 as the Tatar reformist movement grew in size and ascribed ever greater importance to the knowledge of Russian for Muslim pupils and students since this gave them access to Russian society.38 This sentiment mirrored developments in Jewish society. In spite of these striking similarities, there were also important differences. The policy of relying on  a loyal and influential group of clerics who in some ways served both the imperial state and their own communities seems to have been altogether more successful in the Muslim case. Even if the Orenburg mufti lacked authority as  a spiritual leader,39 there were settings in which he acted quite successfully as an intermediary between the Russian state and Muslim communities. One example was the introduction of universal liability for conscription in 1874, which led to disturbances among the Bashkir population of the governorate of Perm. A number of parish imams refused to hand over the register books and incidents of popular unrest were reported. The mufti Tevke­ lev travelled to the region and managed to calm the population.40 In contrast to the Rabbinical Commission, the Orenburg and Tauride Muslim assemblies were permanent institutions which provided the state bureaucracy with a constant contact person responsible for Muslim affairs. The Jewish communities lacked such a figure. As with the Muslim and Jewish “clergy”, one reason why the state’s failure in the case of the Jews was greater was simply because its goals had been more ambitious and its policies accordingly more interventionist. Despite some plans in this direction, the Russian government never embarked on a mission to create a new kind of mullah educated by the state who would transform his co-religionists into “useful” subjects. Even if individuals such as the director of the Kazan Tatar Teachers’ school, Orientalist Vasilii Radlov, envisioned the creation of a liberal Muslim clergy by means of education in 187241, overall the RussianTatar schools established in the 1870s were more concerned with the spread of Russian language and culture than with the creation of “state mullahs” who would compete with local religious leaders. The level of state intervention was higher in the case of the Jews, and perhaps for this reason provoked a sharper divide between “state rabbis” and spiritual rabbis. But why were the government’s goals more ambitious in case of Jews? One important reason was that the structures governing Jews and Muslims in the Russian Empire developed in different historical settings. When Catherine II laid the foundation for the institutionalization of a Muslim “clergy” at the end of the eighteenth century, her goal was 38 Geraci, Window, 155. 39 Kemper, M., Sufis und Gelehrte in Tatarien und Baschkirien, 1789–1889. Der islamische Diskurs unter russischer Herrschaft (Berlin, 1998), 42. 40 Russian State Historical Archive (Rossiiskii gosudarstvennyi istoricheskii arkhiv, St. Petersburg, Russia, hereafter RGIA), RGIA , F. 821, op. 8, d. 754, ll. 56–57. 41 Geraci, Window, 144.

Confessional Policies toward Jews and Muslims in the Russian Empire  55

to create a pillar for the internal order of the empire. When the Jewish committee proposed religious governing bodies and the education of candidates for the posts of state rabbis, it was under the influence of the Nicolavean logic of profoundly transforming the Jewish subjects’ way of life and this entailed the plan to transform their religious elites who imperial bureaucrats held responsible for the Jews’ alleged backwardness. Religious elites with Russian state education were regarded as potential agents for such a transformation. However, for the reasons outlined above, the project ultimately failed and the state rabbinical seminaries were closed in the early 1870s. It was precisely at this time that the Russian-Tatar schools were being established. However, instead of creating a new kind of Muslim “clergy”, they were concerned with strengthening Russian language skills among the Muslim youth and to minimize the “Tatarization” of other non-Russian peoples in the VolgaUral region. Why was the state bureaucracy more reluctant in the case of the Muslims? Surely, in the second half of the nineteenth century, state officials’ views of Muslim religious elites were often not much better than their attitudes toward rabbis. Accordingly, the number of state bureaucrats who viewed the state’s dependence on Muslim clerics as problematic increased. Conservative voices held Catherine’s policy responsible for this state of affairs and viewed the Muslim “clergy” as at least partially responsible for their coreligionists’ alienation from Russian state and society. However, at the same time plans to exert greater influence on these clerics were regularly dismissed as not feasible, because the state’s administrative and practical dependence on them was simply too great. Additionally, radical transformation of the Muslim “clergy” was likely to induce Muslim resistance. The administrative structures Catherine had put in place in the late eighteenth century proved too well-established and all proposals for a radical reform of the state management of Islam were ultimately rejected.

Religious guidance and the army Jews and Muslims were also the two largest non-Christian minorities who served in the Russian army during the nineteenth century. The different management of Jews and Muslims in the civilian sphere had implications for the way they were treated in the army. In the case of the Jews, Tsar Nicolas I issued a decree in 1827 which made the Jews of the Russian Empire liable to military recruitment, in 1843 this was extended to Polish Jews. Like the establishment of state schools for Jews nearly two decades later, this measure was supposed to ­advance the integration of Jews into the imperial order. In Jewish memory, culture, and historiography, the recruitment decree of 1827 and especially the fate of Jewish minors serving in the Cantonist Battalions was often remembered as an assault of the imperial state on Judaism, but recent scholarship has pointed

56  Franziska Davies out that the army was in fact an institution through which Jews were to some extent integrated into Russian society and culture.42 In the case of the Muslims of the Russian Empire there was no “Muslim” experience of the Russian army due to their cultural and regional diversification. The Muslims of the Northern and Southern Caucasus were never liable to military conscription, not even after the military reform of 1874.43 For most of the imperial period, the largely Muslim population of Central Asia was also exempted from service in the army. Only in 1916 did Nicolas II decide to recruit large numbers of the male population as laborers behind the front line. This measure triggered  a violent uprising against imperial rule in the region and made the limits of Russia’s civilizing mission painfully clear.44 The majority of the Crimean Tatars were allowed to serve in their own squadron, which was ­stationed in the Crimea.45 Only the Bashkirs and the Tatars of the Volga-Ural region served as regular rank-and-file soldiers.46 42 Petrovsky-Shtern, Y., Jews in the Russian army, 1827–1917: Drafted into Modernity (Cambridge, 2009). 43 For a good overview over the exemption of certain ethnic groups after 1874, see: von Hagen, M., “The Limits of Reform: The Multiethnic Imperial Army Confronts Nationalism, 1874–1917”, in B. W. Menning/D. Schimmelpfenninck van der Oye (ed.), Reforming the Tsar’s Army: Military Innovation in Imperial Russia from Peter the Great to the Revolution (Cambridge, 2004), 34–55. 44 Brower, D. R., Turkestan and the Fate of the Russian Empire (London, 2003), 1–25, 164– 175. For a micro-historical perspective on the uprising in Central Asia, see: Happel, J., Nomadische Lebenswelten und zarische Politik. Der Aufstand in Zentralasien 1916 (Stuttgart, 2010). 45 The first regiment of Crimean Tatars was formed only a few years after the Russian annexation of Crimea. With minor interruption the Crimean Tatars continued to serve the Russian emperor in this capacity until 1864. With the introduction of universal liability to military service in 1874, the Crimean Tatars managed to preserve their privilege of serving in an irregular unit. For an appraisal of their service, see: Muftiizade, I. M., Ocherk ­stoletnei voennoi sluzhby krimskikh tatar s 1784–1904 g (po arkhivnym materialam) (Simferopol, 1905). For a short discussion of the army’s religious policy towards the Crimean Tatar regiment, see: Davies, F., “Eine imperiale Armee – Juden und Muslime im Dienste des Zaren”, Jahrbuch des Simon-Dubnow-Instituts 12 (2013) 151–172, on pp. 165–166. 46 Tatars already served in the imperial army during the Muscovite period, see: Martin, J., “Tatars in the Muscovite Army during the Livonian War”, in E. Lohr/M. Poe, The military and society in Russia: 1450–1917. (Leiden, 2002), 365–87. In 1722 the Tatars were obligated to provide recruits for the army: Abdullin, Ch. M., Musul’manskoe dukhovenstvo i voennoe vedomstvo Rossiiskoi Imperii (konec XVII-nachalo XX vv.), Dissertation. University of Kazan. Kazan, 2007, 22. The first records of Bashkirs serving in irregular units in the Russian army date from 1629. In 1789 the imperial administration created Bashkir units which were modelled after the Cossack military formations. This tradition initially survived the military reform of 1874 when the Bashkirs of the Orenburg region retained their right to fulfill their military obligations in an irregular unit stationed in the home region which was only disbanded in 1882. ­A fter 1874, the majority of the Bashkirs served in the regular army. For a good overview of the Bashkirs’ history in the Russian army, see: Baumann, R. F., Subject Nationalities in the Military Service of Imperial Russia: The Case of the Bashkirs”, Slavic Review 46:3/4 (1987), 489–502.

Confessional Policies toward Jews and Muslims in the Russian Empire  57

The fate of the Jews in the Russian army is thus best compared to the Muslim population of the Volga-Ural region. Both served predominantly as rank-andfile soldiers in an overwhelmingly Christian institution. One way of measuring the Russian military administration’s willingness to accommodate Muslim and Jewish religious needs is to look at its policy towards religious leadership in the armed forces. Here, Jews and Muslims were clearly treated differently. In marked contrast to Islam, Judaism never became a state-appointed religion in the Russian army. After the Jews of Russia were conscripted in 1827, the question of how they could fulfill their religious needs while serving in the army emerged. The military opted for a pragmatic approach, generally allowing its Jewish soldiers to fulfill their religious duties and ordering officers to release Jewish soldiers from working on the Sabbath and on high religious holidays.47 The navy was – at least for most of the nineteenth century – particularly open to allowing its Jewish sailors space for their religion and even paid Jewish recruits who took it upon themselves to see to the religious needs of their peers in navy hospitals. After ­Nicolas I’s death, the war ministry decided that rabbis and mullahs who travelled to military hospitals to give spiritual support to dying Jewish and Muslim soldiers and who administered the oath when Jewish and Muslim soldiers entered the army should be compensated for their expenses. Yet the military was never willing to grant Judaism an institutionalized presence in the armed forces and stood by this decision until the downfall of the imperial regime.48 In this respect, things looked brighter for the Muslims in the Russian army. For most of the nineteenth century, the military had no coherent policy agenda, but local commanders generally seemed to have pursued a policy of pragmatic toleration. The religious needs of Muslim soldiers were attended to by local imams, or sometimes the Muslim soldiers would – just like the Jewish – simply chose someone from their midst to perform basic religious rites.49 In fact, the army used the Jewish model for its policy toward Muslim soldiers. In the wake of the military reform of 1874, the Orenburg mufti turned to the Ministry of ­Internal Affairs and voiced his concern that Muslim soldiers would be left without religious guidance during their time in the army. He urged the authorities to ensure that military commanders allow Muslim soldiers to select somebody from their midst as their spiritual leader. The general staff, to whom the request was forwarded, replied that such a practice was already in place: the army applied the same principle to Muslim and Jewish soldiers in this respect, and the military code of regulations (svod voennykh postanovlenii) from 1859 stipulated that Jewish soldiers had the right to appoint a comrade as their rabbi.50 47 Petrovsky-Shtern, Jews in the Russian army, 64–66. 48 Petrovsky-Shtern, Jews in the Russian army, 66–69. 49 Abdullin, dukhovenstvo i voennoe vedomstvo, 171. 50 RGIA , F. 821, op. 8, d. 1064, ll. 1, 5.

58  Franziska Davies But, in spite of these rules, there were several cases in the nineteenth century in which the military commanders endorsed their Muslim soldiers’ requests and asked the war ministry to elevate local imams or soldiers to official military mullahs.51 Generally, the Orenburg Muslim Assembly was asked to confirm whether a proposed candidate was suitable for such a position.52 In the second half of the nineteenth century, Muslim chaplains were active in numerous garrisons of the Russian Empire such as Samara (1853), Kronstadt (1858), Nizhny Novgorod, and the Finland military district (1860).53 It was only in the 1890s that the war ministry developed a systematic approach to the question of Muslim army chaplains. Previously, whether somebody was elevated to the status of  a “salaried” (shtatnyi) military Muslim chaplain depended very much on local ad-hoc decisions. Following an investigation in 1890, the main staff learned that it had six mullahs and two muezzins on its payroll.54 But the military districts which had an officially appointed chaplain were by no means the ones where Muslim recruits were concentrated. For example, the war ministry was amazed to discover that it was paying two military mullahs and two muezzins in the St. Petersburg military district, where only 170 Muslims were stationed, while there was only a single one for the 5370 Muslims in the Warsaw military district.55 The war ministry’s solution to the problem was simple: it reckoned that the Russian army, with its 30,000 rank-and-file Muslim soldiers and 260 Muslim officers could do without Muslim chaplains al­together. In this context, the main staff pointed toward its policy on Jewish soldiers as a precedent. Just like the Jews, Muslims were free to choose  a fellow soldier as their spiritual leader. There was no reason, the military argued, why they should be entitled to military chaplains.56 Thus, all the remaining Muslim clerics in the army were discharged in 1896.57 But this decision was reversed only a few years later. The Orenburg Muslim Assembly lobbied the government to reinstall Muslim chaplains at the state’s ex 51 One example was the Warsaw military district where the military authorities appointed the soldier Seyud-Din Syunyaev as “military mullah” in 1871 without official approval from the Orenburg Muslim Spiritual Assembly since it had no jurisdiction in Poland. The procedure is documented in: RGIA , F. 821, op. 8, d. 1053. 52 Zagidullin, I. K., Musul’manskoe bogosluzhdenie v uchrezhdeniiakh Rossiiskoi Imperii (Evropeiskaia chast’ Rossii i Sibir’) (Kazan, 2006), 31–32; Abdullin, dukhovenstvo i voennoe vedomstvo, 164. 53 Abdullin, dukhovenstvo i voennoe vedomstvo, 161–163, 179–180. For a thorough overview over individual Muslim military chaplains in the 19th and early 20th centuries, see: ­Abdullin, dukhovenstvo i voennoe vedomstvo, 147–194. 54 Russian state military historical archive (Rossiiskii gosudarstvennyi voenno-istori­ cheskii arkhiv, Moscow, Russia, hereafter RGVIA), F. 400, op. 2, d. 5627, l. 62. 55 RGVIA , F. 400, op. 2, d. 5627, ll. 107, 107 ob. 56 RGVIA , F. 400, op. 2, d. 5627, l. 182a ob. 57 RGVIA , F. 400, op. 2, d. 5627, ll. 186–188.

Confessional Policies toward Jews and Muslims in the Russian Empire  59

pense in 1903 after a manifesto was passed affirming the government’s commitment to the principle of “toleration” (veroterpimost’).58 A letter was presented to Tsar Nicolas II in which the Emperor was reminded that 40,000 Muslim rankand-file soldiers “are giving their blood just as the Russians for the Russian fatherland and have always fulfilled their duties as faithful subjects of their beloved Monarch”.59 The war ministry was not exactly enthusiastic about the project at first, but on the Tsar’s insistence it sent out inquiries to the commanders of the empire’s military districts for numbers of how many Muslims were serving in their garrisons and whether the hiring of  a military chaplain was necessary and desirable. Based on the results of this survey, the ministry proposed the appointment of four Muslim chaplains in the Kiev, Warsaw and the ­Priamurskii military district where the majority of Muslim recruits were concentrated. This rather low number for around 30,000 Muslim soldiers was considered appropriate since any Muslim could perform relevant religious rites such as the reading of the prayer for the dead or the administration of the oath. In this respect, the War Ministry argued, Muslim soldiers’ needs differed from those of their Catholic and Lutheran comrades, where the presence of a clergyman for certain rites was dictated by religious law.60 The low number proposed by the war ministry did not just bring about protest from the Orenburg Muslim Assembly, but also from Muslim officers who had together convened  a meeting in Ufa. Members of the Orenburg Muslim ­Assembly, Muslim officers, and a number of mullahs who had looked after soldiers during the Russo-Japanese War, were all in agreement that the ministry’s proposal was insufficient and urged the ministry to increase the number of the military mullahs to at least one for every three to four thousand soldiers.61 Their line of argument is intriguing. First, the Muslim officers and “clerics” argued that the role of the mullahs could by no means be reduced to administering the oath of allegiance and reading prayers for the dead. They were also needed to support wounded soldiers in military hospitals, to lead communal prayers, especially during religious holidays, or to simply talk to the soldiers. Second, religious spiritual support would be beneficial for the soldiers’ conduct. As religious leaders they would not only instil obedience to God, but would see to the discipline of the soldiers in general.62 The underlying reasoning was clear: the soldier who is faithful to his God cannot be unfaithful to his fatherland. The soldier who shows discipline in fulfilling his religious duties will show 58 Werth, P. W., “The Emergence of ‘Freedom of Conscience’ in Imperial Russia”, Kritika. Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History 133 (2012), 585–610, on p. 606. 59 RGVIA , F. 400, op. 2, d. 7205, l. 1.  60 RGVIA , F. 400, op. 2, d. 7205, ll. 123–128. For the replies of the individual military districts, see: ll. 18–83. 61 See RGVIA , F. 400, op. 2, d. 5627, ll. 145–151 for the minutes of their meeting. 62 RGVIA , F. 400, op. 2, d. 5627, l. 151.

60  Franziska Davies discipline in fulfilling his military duties.63 Particularly the mullahs who had acted as chaplains during the campaign against Japan boasted of how, under their auspices, the soldiers had proven themselves as loyal subjects of the Tsar. The former chaplain of the third Manchurian army, Ismail Sultangaliev, stated that he had personally overheard the local commander pointing to the Muslim soldiers of his regiment as a role model for other soldiers because of their discipline and bravery.64 Thus, a function was attributed to the mullahs that went beyond the purely religious sphere. According to this line of reasoning, religious guidance would quite simply turn Muslims into better soldiers. These statements seem to have made an impression. The Ministry of Internal Affairs and the War Ministry decided, on the basis of the Muslim assembly’s recommendations, that a total of nine Muslim chaplains were appropriate, even if the main staff insisted that mullahs were only absolutely essential for administering the soldiers’ oath and reading the prayer for the dead.65 Nonetheless, the Orenburg mufti had scored a victory. With the support of Muslim officers, he had succeeded in persuading the war ministry to more than double the number of Muslim chaplains it had initially announced. What does this episode tell us about the place of Islam in the Russian army in the late nineteenth century and how does it compare to the place of Judaism? How does this relate to the “confessional policies” towards Jews and Muslims described in the first part of this article? While local army commanders were generally willing to accommodate the needs of both Jewish and Muslim soldiers, only Islam was ultimately empowered by the central military authorities at the beginning of the twentieth century. Such a privilege was never granted to Jews. Demands from Jews to this effect were rebuffed.66 One explanation surely lies with the different standing of the “Jewish” and the “Muslim” question in late imperial Russia. When the army institutionalized Muslim religious guidance at the turn of the twentieth century, the situation of the Jews in the Russian Empire had clearly taken a turn for the worse for some time. In the 1880s, the Russian Empire experienced a wave of anti-Jewish violence.67 During the reign of Alexander III, discriminatory legislation against the Jews was passed restricting, among other things, their access to higher education.68 The Russian army was also affected by the emergence of an aggressive antisemitism. In fact, the question of Jewish military service became one of the main themes of the anti-Jewish 63 Davies, “Eine imperiale Armee”, 168. 64 RGVIA , F. 400, op. 2, d. 5627, ll. 150, 150ob. 65 RGVIA , F. 400, op. 2, d. 5627, ll. 159–162. 66 Benecke, W., Militär, Reform und Gesellschaft im Zarenreich: Die Wehrpflicht in Russland, 1874–1914 (Paderborn, 2006), 256–257. There were some advocates for military rabbis in the imperial bureaucracy; see: Davies, “Eine imperiale Armee”, 167. 67 Klier, J. D., Russian, Jews, and the Pogroms of 1881–1882 (Cambride, 2011). 68 Nathans, Beyond the Pale, 257–307.

Confessional Policies toward Jews and Muslims in the Russian Empire  61

discourse in late imperial Russia. The higher military authorities, as well as conservative political and intellectual circles, regularly accused Jews of draft dodging and of being poor material for the army anyway.69 While suspicion against Muslims  – and especially Tatars  – certainly increased from the second half of the nineteenth century onward, the “Muslim” question never gained the same kind of explosiveness in the civilian – and most certainly not in the military – sphere.70 Indeed, in some cases Muslims were actually treated favourably in the army in comparison not only to Jews, but also to Protestants, Roman-Catholics, and Greek-Catholics.71 After all, the Russian Empire felt far more threatened in the Western peripheries of the empire than in the regions inhabited by Tatars and Bashkirs. But these differences were not the only reason why Islam gained institutionalization in the army and Judaism did not. In the Orenburg Muslim Assembly and its staff the Muslims of the inner provinces of the Russian Empire possessed a strong advocate who was well-integrated into the imperial bureaucratic system and who had close links to the Russian government, including right up to the Monarch himself.. The confessional politics of the late eighteenth century had equipped the Muslim population with a bureaucratic structure from which they still profited at the beginning of the twentieth, when conservative forces in the bureaucracy actually loathed their dependence on  a Muslim “clergy”. The confessional policy toward Jews had been different. Russia’s Jews lacked a comparable figure to that of the Orenburg mufti. Additionally, Nicolas’ project of creating “state rabbis” on whom the government could rely to tighten its grip on Jewish communities had largely failed. Consequently, the opportunities for Jews of lobbying the government on behalf of Jewish soldiers were much more limited.

Bibliography Abdullin, Ch. M., Musul’manskoe dukhovenstvo i voennoe vedomstvo Rossiiskoi Imperii (konec XVII-nachalo XX vv.), Dissertation. University of Kazan. (Kazan, 2007). Azamatov, D., “The Muftis of the Orenburg Spiritual Assembly in the 18th and 19th Centuries: The Struggle for Power in Russia’s Muslims Institution”, in A. von Kügelgen/ M. Kemper/A. J. Frank (ed.), Muslim culture in Russia and Central Asia from the 18th to the early 20th centuries: Inter-regional and inter-ethnic relations. 4 vols. Vol. 2. (Berlin, 1998), 355–84.

69 Petrovsky-Shtern, Jews in the Russian Army, 240–248. 70 Campbell, E., “The Muslim Question in Late Imperial Russia”, in J. Burbank/M. von Hagen/A. Remnev (ed.), Russian empire: Space, People, Power, 1700–1930 (Bloomington, Ind., 2007), 320–47, on p. 343. 71 Petrovsky-Shtern, Jews in the Russian Army, 69.

62  Franziska Davies Benecke, W., Militär, Reform und Gesellschaft im Zarenreich: Die Wehrpflicht in Russland, 1874–1914 (Paderborn, 2006). Brower, D. R., Turkestan and the fate of the Russian Empire (London, 2003). Baumann, R. F., “Subject Nationalities in the Military Service of Imperial Russia: The Case of the Bashkirs”, Slavic Review 46:3/4 (1987), 489–502. Campbell, E., “The Autocracy and the Muslim Clergy in the Russian Empire (1850s–1917)”, Russian Studies in History 44:2 (2005) 8–29. Campbell, E., “The Muslim Question in Late Imperial Russia”, in: J. Burbank/M. von Hagen/A. Remnev (ed.), Russian empire: Space, People, Power, 1700–1930 (Bloomington, Ind., 2007). Crews, R. D., For Prophet and Tsar: Islam and Empire in Russia and Central Asia (Cambridge, Mass., 2006). Crews, R. D., “Empire and the Confessional State: Islam and Religious Politics in NineteenthCentury Russia”, in: The American Historical Review 108:1 (2003), 50–83. Dowler, W., Classroom and Empire. The Politics of Schooling Russia’s Eastern Nationalities, 1860–1917 (London/Ithaca, 2001). Freeze, C. Y., Jewish Marriage and Divorce in Imperial Russia (Hanover/London, 2002). Happel, J., Nomadische Lebenswelten und zarische Politik. Der Aufstand in Zentralasien 1916 (Stuttgart, 2010). Kemper, M., Sufis und Gelehrte in Tatarien und Baschkirien, 1789–1889. Der islamische Diskurs unter russischer Herrschaft (Berlin, 1998). Klier, J. D., Russian, Jews, and the Pogroms of 1881–1882 (Cambridge, 2011). Klier, J. D., Imperial Russia’s Jewish Question, 1855–1881 (Cambridge, 1995). Martin, J., “Tatars in the Muscovite Army during the Livonian War”, in E. Lohr/M. Poe (ed.), The military and society in Russia: 1450–1917 (Leiden, 2002), 365–87. Mostashari, F., On the Religious Frontier: Tsarist Russia and Islam in the Caucasus (­ London, 2006). Muftiizade, I. M., Ocherk stoletnei voennoi sluzhby krimskich tatar s 1784–1904 g (po arkhiv­ nym materialam) (Simferopol, 1905). Nathans, B., Beyond the Pale: The Jewish Encounter with Late Imperial Russia (Berkeley, 2002). Noack, C., Muslimischer Nationalismus im russischen Reich. Nationsbildung und Nationalbewegung bei Tataren und Baschkiren. 1861–1917 (Stuttgart, 2000). Petrovsky-Shtern, Y., Jews in the Russian Army, 1827–1917: Drafted into Modernity (Cambridge, 2009). Roth, B., “Dokumentation: Religionen/Konfessionen”, in: H. Bauer/A. Kappeler,/B. Roth (ed.): Die Nationalitäten des Russischen Reiches in der Volkszählung von 1897: A: Quellenkritische Dokumentation und Datenhandbuch. 2 vols. (Stuttgart, 1991), 285–323. von Hagen, M., “The Limits of Reform: The Multiethnic Imperial Army Confronts Nationalism, 1874–1917”, in B. W. Menning/D. Schimmelpfenninck van der Oye (ed.), Reforming the Tsar’s Army: Military Innovation in Imperial Russia from Peter the Great to the Revolution (Cambridge, 2004), 34–55. Werth, P. W., The Tsar’s Foreign Faiths: Toleration and the Fate of Religious Freedom in Imperial Russia (Oxford, 2014). Werth, P. W., “The Emergence of ‘Freedom of Conscience’ in Imperial Russia”, Kritika. ­Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History 133 (2012), 585–610 Werth, P. W., “In the State’s Embrace? Civil Acts in an Imperial Order”, Kritika: Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History 73 (2006), 433–458. Werth, P., At the Margins of Orthodoxy. Mission, governance, and confessional politics in Russia’s Volga-Kama region, 1827–1905 (Ithaca, 2002). Zagidullin, I. K., Musul’manskoe bogosluzhdenie v uchrezhdeniiack Rossijskoi Imperii (Evro­ pejskaja chast’ Rossii i Sibir’) (Kazan, 2006).

Confessional Policies toward Jews and Muslims in the Russian Empire  63

Archival Sources

Russian State Historical Archive (Rossiiskii gosudarstvennyi istoricheskii arkhiv, St. Petersburg, Russia, RGIA) Fond 821, Ministry for Internal Affairs, Department for Foreign Faiths Russian State Military Historical Archive (Rossiiskii gosudarstvennyi voenno-istoricheskii arkhiv, Moscow, Russia, RGVIA) Fond 400, Main Staff

Vladimir Levin

Common Problems, Different Solutions: Jewish and Muslim Politics in Late Imperial Russia*

Muslims and Jews were the two largest and most important non-Christian groups living in the Russian Empire: the all-Russian census of 1897 counted fourteen million Muslims and five million Jews (eleven and four percent of the total population, respectively). As non-Christians, both groups faced similar problems in the empire, which saw itself as a Christian state; both groups fell under the legal definition of inorodtsy and were viewed with hostility by adherents of Russian nationalism.1 Judaism and Islam traditionally had no formal religious hierarchy and thus faced attempts by the state to reorganize and control their religious leaderships. Both groups spoke their own languages and thus faced the demands of the state that their religious leaders learn Russian. Both had co-religionists abroad and were thus suspected of disloyalty; both also played a role in foreign policy considerations, although very different ones. The difference lay in the degree of integration, real and symbolic, of Jews and Muslims into the structures of Russian state and Russian society. Andreas ­Kappeler has pointed to the incorporation of non-Russian elites into the imperial ruling elite, and Benjamin Nathans has described the “selective integration” of Jews.2 While Muslim elites continued to be symbolically integrated until the collapse of the empire, the state-sponsored integration of Jews ended in 1881; nonetheless, Jewish involvement in Russian society continued to grow. Robert Crews has defined the nineteenth-century Russian Empire as a “confessional state”, i. e.,  a state “committed to backing the construction and implementation of ‘orthodoxy’ within each recognized religious community”.3 * I am grateful to Arkadii Zeltser, Semion Goldin, Alex Valdman, and Anna Berezina for reading drafts of this article and making important suggestions and improvements. 1 On inorodtsy see Slocum, J., “Who, and When, Were the Inorodtsy? The Evolution of the Category of ‘Aliens’ in Imperial Russia”, Russian Review 57 (1998), 173–190; Bobrovnikov, V., “Chto vyshlo iz proektov sozdaniia v Rossii inorodtsev? (otvet Dzhonu Slokumu iz musul’­ manskikh okrain imperii)”, in: A. Miller/I. Schierle/D. Sdvizhkov (ed.), Poniatiia o Rossii: k istoricheskoi semantike imperskogo perioda (Moscow, 2012), vol. II, 259–291. 2 Kappeler, A., Russland als Vielvölkerreich: Entstehung, Geschichte, Zerfall (München, 1993); Nathans, B., Beyond the Pale: The Jewish Encounter with Late Imperial Russia (Berkeley, 2002), 45–79. 3 Crews, R., “Empire and Confessional State: Islam and Religious Politics in NineteenthCentury Russia”, American Historical Review 108:1 (February 2003), 50–83, on p. 52.

66  Vladimir Levin I­ ndeed, the tsarist authorities not only tolerated religions besides the privileged Russian Orthodox Church, but also provided support for the fulfillment of religious obligations of non-Orthodox communities; they included the “clergy” of various denominations in the imperial hierarchy, which gave them greater control not only over religious elites, but also over the non-Russian-Orthodox population.4 Starting in the late nineteenth century, the religious definitions of identities were slowly being replaced by nationality (and even race); however, this transition was by no means complete by 1917. Religious questions, often being equivalent to questions about nationalities, remained important until the very end of the empire.5 The last decade of the Russian Empire could be characterized as  a period of rapid development of the public sphere, both at the imperial level and at the level of non-dominant ethno-religious and national groups. As a result of the First Russian Revolution of 1905–1907,6 the elected parliament, the State Duma, became the major political arena, while the burgeoning newspapers in various languages and voluntary associations provided space for intra-group and intergroup discussions.7 In this new field of public politics, Jews and Muslims obviously had similar objectives vis-à-vis the Russian state. The aim of this article is to compare Jewish and Muslim parliamentary politics in the last decade of the Russian Empire, as a reaction toward the attitudes of the government and its supporters. The first part of the article is devoted to the activities of Muslim and Jewish political elites during the first Russian revolution of 1905–1907, which was a period of relative liberty. Its main question is their interaction (or the lack of interaction) in pursuing similar political goals. The second part deals with the period after the revolution (1907–1917), when the government’s intensifying reactionary policies completely changed the political climate in Russia. It discusses the Jewish and Muslim attempts to achieve limited goals with the support of conservative forces in the Duma and in the gov 4 Crews, R., For Prophet and Tsar. Islam and Empire in Russia and Central Asia (Cambridge, 2006). For the conditions of Jewish religious practices see Levin, V., “Civil Law and Jewish Halakhah: Problems of Coexistence in the Late Russian Empire”, in Y. Kleinmann/ T. Wilson (ed.), Religion in the Mirror of Law: Eastern European Perspectives from the Early Modern Period till 1939 (Frankfurt am Main in print). 5 Cf. Crews’ wording: “The rise of nationalist currents did not effect  a parting of the ways between the tsarist regime and the mass of its Muslim subjects. To be sure, the number of those on the extremist fringes calling for confrontation and separation grew in the last three decades of the empire. But the din of the strident voices […] should not drown out the majority that continued to seek accommodation and pursue integration” – Crews, For Prophet and Tsar, 299–300. 6 On the revolution see Ascher, A., The Revolution of 1905, 2 vols. (Stanford, 1988–1992). 7 Walkin, J., The Rise of Democracy in Pre-Revolutionary Russia: Political and Social ­Institutions Under the Last Three Czars (London, 1963); von Hagen, M., Die Entfaltung politischer Öffentlichkeit in Russland, 1906–1914 (Wiesbaden, 1982).

Common Problems, Different Solutions 67

ernment. The third part looks into the experience of parliamentary politics in 1907–1917 and connects it to the attitudes of the Russian government toward Jews and Muslims. Because this article deals with public politics, I allow myself to use the terms “Muslim” and “Jewish” as they were used at that time by the politicians, and do not enter into  a discussion of ethno-linguistic groups and regional differences among the Muslim population of the empire, which was spread across the Volga-Ural region, Crimea, the Caucasus, and Central Asia, or into the question of whether the Jews were a modern nation or an ethno-religious entity. More important is that everyday contact between Jews and Muslims was minimal. Only non-Ashkenazi (Bukharan, Mountain, and Crimean) Jews lived among Muslims, but they were an insignificant minority in comparison with the Ashkenazi community, and played an extremely minor role, if at all, in predominantly Ashkenazi-centered Jewish public life and politics.8 Among the Ashkenazim, only small and marginal groups living in Crimea and in the cities of the Middle Volga, the Caucasus, and Turkestan had the opportunity to interact with the Muslim population.9 The geographical factor made relations between Jews and Muslims far less dramatic in comparison with the turbulent Jewish-Polish or Jewish-Ukrainian relations of the same historical period. Muslims were almost totally absent from Jewish political discourse, and it seems that Muslim public figures also did not pay much attention to Jews.

The First Russian Revolution, 1905–1907 The level of participation of the Jewish and Muslim population in the 1905 Revolution was quite different: Jews in general were much more active in the revolutionary events than the Muslims.10 One of the reasons was geographical: the 1905 Revolution was especially active in the western part of the empire, which 8 For a case about jurisdiction of Muslim courts over Bukharan Jews in Samarkand and other regions of Turkestan see Crews, R., “Islamic Law, Imperial Order: Muslims, Jews, and the Russian State”, Ab Imperio 3 (2004), 567–490. 9 Interestingly, the owner of the newspaper Tavrida, where the future leader of Jadidism, Ismail Bey Gasprinskii, began his publishing career in 1880–82, was an Ashkenazi Jew, Mikhail Spiro. See Lazzerini, E., “Local Accommodation and Resistance to Colonialism in Nineteenth-Century Crimea”, in D. Brower/E. Lazzerini (ed.), Russia’s Orient: Imperial ­Borderlands and Peoples, 1700–1917 (Bloomington/Indianapolis, 1997), 169–187, on p. 184. 10 On Jewish participation in the revolution see Frankel, J., Prophecy and Politics: Socialism, Nationalism and the Russian Jews, 1862–1917 (Cambridge, 1981), 134–170; Hoffman S./ Mendelsohn E. (ed.), The Revolution of 1905 and Russia’s Jews (Philadelphia, 2008). On the participation of Muslims in the Volga-Ural region see Noack, C., “Retrospectively Revolting: Kazan Tatar ‘Conspiracies’ During the 1905 Revolution”, in J. Smele/A. Heywood (ed.), The Russian Revolution of 1905: Centenary Perspectives (Oxford/New York, 2008), 119–136.

68  Vladimir Levin boasted a Jewish population but very few Muslims; the majority of Jews were city dwellers, while the majority of Muslims were peasants. Another reason, even more important, was the different stage of modernization, especially in the political sense, achieved by the Russian Jews and Muslims. The Jewish Enlightenment, known as Haskalah, flourished in the mid-nineteenth century; in the early twentieth century, Jewish politics were defined by modern parties that had  a mass following. The Muslim Enlightenment, known as Jadidism, first took root in the 1870s and 1880s, and modern Muslim politics had only begun to emerge and were still dominated by traditional elites when the first Russian revolution broke out in 1905.11 Indeed, Jewish intelligentsia actively participated in Russian political life, while Muslim intelligentsia had just entered those realms; revolutionary parties, first and foremost the Jewish Labor Bund, had been conducting their propaganda among Jews since the 1890s, while the Muslim socialist movement emerged only at the beginning of the twentieth century. Nonetheless, differences in degree of previous political experience did not play  a decisive role at the time of rapid and powerful political mobilization characterizing the First Russian Revolution, and Jewish and Muslim political elites acted quite similarly. In the beginning of 1905, St. Petersburg Jewish activists submitted a memo to the Chairman of the Committee of Ministers, Sergey Witte, which demanded civil equality in very moderate terms.12 At the same time, Muslim activists submitted memoranda demanding broader rights for Muslims to Witte as well.13 Neither attempt produced any immediate results. Jewish and Muslim politicians continued to act similarly during 1905 and 1906. A convention of Jewish public activists held in March 1905 in Vil’na (Vilnius) established the Union for the Achievement of Full Rights for the Jewish People in Russia – a liberal organization which took part in the “liberation movement”.14 11 On Jadidism in Central Asia see Khalid, A., The Politics of Muslim Cultural Reform: Jadidism in Central Asia (Berkeley, CA 1998); on Jadids in the Revolution of 1905  – ibid., 229–230. On Jadidism among the Tatars and Bashkirs, see: Noack, C., Muslimischer Natio­ nalismus im russischen Reich. Nationsbildung und Nationalbewegung bei Tataren und Basch­ kiren. 1861–1917 (Stuttgart, 2000), esp. 136–178, 205–217, 415–437. 12 Frumkin, Ia.G., “Iz istorii russkogo evreistva”, in Kniga o russkom evreistve ot 1860-kh godov do revoliutsii 1917 g. (New York, 1960), 62–67; Dubnov, S. M., Kniga zhizni, vol. 2 (Riga, 1935), 20.  13 Werth, P., At the Margins of Orthodoxy: Mission, Governance, and Confessional Politics in Russia’s Volga-Kama Region, 1827–1905 (Ithaca/London, 2002), 245–248; Iskhakov, S. M., Pervaia russkaia revoliutsiia i musul’mane Rossiiskoi imperii (Moscow, 2007), 113–125; Usmanova, D., Deputaty ot Kazanskoi gubernii v Gosudarstvennoi dume, 1906–1917 (Kazan, 2006), 268–270. For a convenient overview of Russian laws about the Muslims see Koch, H., Die Russische Gesetzgebung über den Islam bis zum Ausbruch des Weltkrieges (Berlin, 1918). 14 On the Union see Frankel, J., Prophecy and Politics, 162–165; Mitsenmakher, B., Ha-brit le-hasagat mlo ha-zkhuyot la-am ha-yehudi be-rusiya, M. A. thesis, Hebrew University of Jerusalem 1973; Orbach, A., “Zionism and the Russian Revolution of 1905: The Commit-

Common Problems, Different Solutions 69

In August 1905, the First All-Russian Muslim Congress in Nizhnii Novgorod decided to establish the Union of Muslims of Russia (Ittifaq al-muslemin), and the Second Muslim Congress in St. Petersburg in January 1906 accepted the bylaws and program of the Ittifaq.15 Both organizations positioned themselves as the sole representatives of these “nations” and claimed to be speaking on their behalf in Russian politics. Both encountered opposition from the socialists, who claimed that unity outside class divisions was impossible. Both also became close allies of the Constitutional Democratic Party, widely known as Kadets: a member of the Kadets’ Central Committee, Maxim Vinaver, became the chairman of the Union for the Achievement of Full Rights, and a leader of the Ittifaq, Iusuf Akchurin ­(Yusuf Akçura), was elected to the Central Committee in April 1906. However, since political parties were already established in Jewish society, it was impossible for the Union to transform into a political party, while the Ittifaq declared itself the Muslim party in August 1906.16 Yet the programs of both Unions went far beyond the Kadet program and included demands for “national rights” – that is, national autonomy and proportional elections.17 Many parties representing national groups (Armenians, Georgians, Germans, Latvians, Lithuanians, Ukrainians) demanded a proportional electoral system in order to ensure fair representation of those groups in the all-Russian parliament.18 But all of them insisted on territorial autonomy ment to Participate in Domestic Political Life”, Bar-Ilan 24/25 (1989), 12–21; Gassenschmidt, C., Jewish Liberal Politics in Tsarist Russia, 1900–1914: The Modernization of Russian Jewry (New York, 1995), 19–44; Vovshin, I., Tahalikh hitgabshuta shel yahadut rusiya le-or pe’ilut ­‘ha-brit le-hasagat mlo ha-zekhuyot avur ha-am ha-yehudi be-rusiya’ bi-tkufat ha-mahapekha ­ha-rusit ha-rishona, 1905–1907, M. A. thesis, Haifa University, 2008. 15 Arsharuni, A./Gabidullin, G., Ocherki panslavizma i pantiurkizma v Rossii (Moscow, 1931), 23–33; Iskhakov, S. M., “Obshcherossiiskaia partiia musul’man”, in A. I. Zevelev et al (ed.), Istoriia natsional’nykh politicheskikh partii Rossii (Moscow, 1997), 214–239; Ischakov, Pervaia russkaia revoliutsiia, 162–172, 203–217, 326–343; Khabutdinov, A.Iu./Mukhetdinov, D. V., Vserossiiskie musul’manskie s”ezdy, 1905–1906 gg. (Nizhnii Novgorod, 2005), 20–30; Usmanova, D., Musul’manskie predstaviteli v Rossiiskom parlamente, 1906–1916 ­(Kazan, 2005), 133–145. 16 Iskhakov, Pervaia russkaia revoliutsiia, 255–263. On the participation of representatives from Turkestan see Khalid, The Politics of Muslim Cultural Reform, 231–232. 17 Fakhrutdinov, R. R., Materialy i dokumenty po istorii obshchestvenno-politicheskogo dvizheniia sredi tatar (1905–1917 gg.) (Kazan, 1992), 7–8; Fakhrutdinov, R. R., “Tatarskoe liberal’no-demokraticheskoe dvizhenie v kontse XIX – nachale XX vv.: ideologiia i politicheskaia programma”, abstract of dissertation, Kazan, 1996, 18; Khabutdinov/Mukhetdinov, ­Vserossiiskie musul’manskie s’ezdy, 30; Iskhakov, Pervaia russkaia revoliutsiia, 209, 255–263. On the Jewish demand for proportional elections see Levin, V., “Die jüdischen Wähler und die Reichsduma”, in D. Dahlmann/P. Trees (ed.), Von Duma zu Duma. Hundert Jahre russischer Parlamentarismus (Bonn, 2009), 155–172, here on pp.159–161. 18 Lithuanian Social-Democratic Party, Latvian Social-Democratic Workers’ Party, Dash­ naktsutyun, Revolutionary Ukrainian Party, Ukrainian Social-Democrativ Workers’ Party, Ukrainian Domocratic-Radical Party, Georgian Party of Socialists-Federalists, Baltic Con-

70  Vladimir Levin for their regions. Only the Jewish and Muslim Unions sought ex-territorial national-personal autonomy to provide favorable conditions for sustainability and development of their cultures. This issue separated Muslims and Jews from other nationalities of the Russian Empire. Ex-territorial autonomy was quite a logical claim: Jews did not constitute a majority in any geographical area; Muslims were the majority in Central Asia and Azerbaijan, but in the provinces of European Russia they were a minority of the population.19 The Jewish demand of ex-territorial autonomy, however, was based on the concept of modern nationalism and on the scheme developed by Austro-Marxists.20 Muslims used another model – the millet system in the Ottoman Empire, which allowed territorially dispersed confessional groups to be governed via their religious hierarchies and provided them with autonomy over their internal affairs.21 One might expect that the demand of ex-territorial autonomy, rejected by other national movements, would have drawn Jewish and Muslim politicians closer, but I did not succeed in finding any sign of such cooperation.22 Mutual stitutional Party (“German Party”) – see Kriven’kii, V. V./Tarasova, N. N. (ed.), Programmy politicheskikh partii Rossii, konets XIX–nachalo XX vv. (Moscow, 1995), 21, 55, 63, 76, 133, 168, 188, 338. See also the decision of the Union of Autonomists-Federalists – Fomin, V. M. (ed.), Programmnye dokumenty natsional’nykh politicheskikh partii i organizatsii Rossii (konets XIX v.–1917 g.) (Moscow, 1996), 184. 19 The Muslims constituted between 88 and 99 percent of the population in the provinces of Central Asia; between 43 and 83 percent of the population in the provinces of Transcaucasia; but between 10 and 50 percent in the provinces of the Volga-Ural region and Crimea. See Usmanova, Musul’manskie predstaviteli, 70, 71, 74. 20 On Jewish Autonomism see Stillschweig, K., “Nationalism and Autonomy among Eastern European Jewry: Origin and Historical Development up to 1939”, Historia Judaica 6 (1944), 27–68; Frankel, Prophecy and Politics, according to the index; Frankel, J., “S. M. Dubnov: Historian and Ideologist”, in S. Dubnov-Erlich (ed.), The Life and Work of S. M. Dubnov: Diaspora Nationalism and Jewish History (Bloomington/Indianapolis, 1991), 1–33; Hilbrenner, A., Diaspora-Nationalismus: Zur Geschichtskonstruktion Simon Dubnows (Göttingen, 2007); Karlip, J., The Tragedy of a Generation: The Rise and Fall of Jewish Nationalism in Eastern Europe (Cambridge, 2013); Rabinovich, S., Jewish Rights, National Rites: Nationalism and Autonomy in Late Imperial and Revolutionary Russia (Stanford, 2014). 21 On millet system see, for example, Fortna, B.C/Katsikas, S. et al (ed.), State-Nationalisms in the Ottoman Empire, Greece and Turkey: Orthodox and Muslims, 1830–1945 (London/ New York, 2013) and bibliography cited there. 22 So far, I succeeded to find only two cases of Jewish and Muslim politicians taking part or planning to take part in common political activities. The first case is the Union of Autonomists-Federalists, established in November 1905 by Jan Baudouine de Courtenay with participation of “Azeris (Transcaucasian Tatars), Armenians, Belorussians, Georgian, Jews, Kirgizs, Latvians, Lithuanians, Poles, Tatars, Ukrainians, and Estonians” (Fomin, Programmnye dokumenty, 183), which did not become  a significant political organization. See, Iskhakov, Pervaia russkaia revoliutsiia, 177–181; Usmanova, Musul’manskie predstaviteli, 246. The second case is the conference of national Socialist parties initiated by Haim Zhitlovsky and his Jewish Socialist Workers’ Party and conducted under the auspices of the Party of Socialists-Revolutionaries in April 1907. Representatives of the Muslim Volga

Common Problems, Different Solutions 71

ignorance and discourse concentrated on their relations with the imperial centers, both administrative and public, prevented this cooperation. Both Unions applied similar policies in the electoral campaigns to the First and Second State Dumas in spring 1906 and winter 1907. They stressed the importance of electing Jewish and Muslim deputies respectively, almost without paying attention to their general political views; and they cooperated with local Kadets. Both Unions achieved remarkable electoral success: 25 Muslim and twelve Jewish deputies were elected to the First Duma. During the elections to the Second Duma in the winter of 1907, the Muslims even improved their ­results, with 37 members elected to the Duma, while Jews suffered an electoral defeat and were able to elect only four Jewish deputies.23 The Duma opened on April 27, 1906 and became the country’s center of ­political life, including for non-dominant ethnic and national groups.24 The Jewish and Muslim members of the Duma were, however, faced with a dilemma: to either establish separate national factions or to conduct parliamentary work in the “general” factions of Russian political parties. The example of national “separatism” in the Russian political arena was given by the Polish Duma members, who established the Polish faction (Koło) even before the opening of the Duma. Polish nationalism was well developed, public politics in Poland were separated from Russian politics, and there was a clear political goal – to achieve territorial autonomy for the Kingdom of Poland.25 Neither Jews nor Muslims had a background similar to that of the Poles. [magometanskoi povolzhskoi] Organization of the Party of Socialists-Revolutionaries were invited to the conference but they did not arrive for unknown reason. See Protokoly Konferentsii rossiiskikh natsional’no-sotsialisticheskikh partii, 16–20 aprelia 1907 (St. Petersburg, 1908), 3. 23 On Muslim participation in the elections see Usmanova, Musul’manskie predstaviteli, 146–149, 160–165; Iskhakov, Pervaia russkaia revoliutsiia, 218–224, 264–269; Auch, E.M, “Muslime in den kaukasischen Dumawahlen 1906”, in D. Dahlmann/P, Trees (ed.), Von Duma zu Duma. Hundert Jahre russischer Parlamentarismus (Bonn, 2009), 199–228. On Jewish participation in the elections see Harcave, S., “The Jews and the First Russian National Election”, American Slavic and East European Review IX (1950), 33–41; Levin, V., “Russian Jewry and the Duma Elections, 1906–1907”, Jews and Slavs VII (2000), 233–264; Levin, “Die jüdischen Wähler.” 24 On the ethnic dimensions of the Duma see Tsionchuk, R. A., Dumskaia model parlamentarizma v Rossiiskoi imperii: etnokonfessional’noe i regional’noe izmereniia (Kazan, 2004); Semyonov, A., “‘The Real and Live Ethnographic Map of Russia’: The Russian Empire in the Mirror of the State Duma”, in I. Gerasimov/J. Kusber/A. Semyonov (ed.), Empire Speaks Out: Languages of Rationalization and Self-Description in the Russian Empire (Leiden/­ Boston, 2009), 191–228. 25 See Chmielewski, E., The Polish Question in the Russian State Duma (Knoxville 1970); Szwarc, A./Wieczorkiewicz, P., “Uwagi o taktyce przedstawicielstwa polskiego w II Dumie Państwowej”, in A. Szwarc/P. Wieczorkiewicz (ed.), Unifikacja za wszelką cenę: Sprawy ­polskie w polityce rosyjskiej na przełomie XIX i XX wieku (Warsaw, 2002), 171–187.

72  Vladimir Levin The majority of Jewish and Muslim members of the First Duma joined the Constitutional Democratic faction, which was the strongest of the house. They followed the Kadet tactic of resolving the question of civil equality in general, without stressing the Jewish or Muslim question as a separate issue. However, the feelings of unity and detachment from the Russian groups among the Muslim deputies were stronger, and after the arrival of representatives from the Caucasus and Kazakhstan they formed a separate Muslim faction.26 The Jewish deputies also worked together on issues which concerned Jews, but the attempt of the Zionists (who constituted the nationalist wing of the Union for the Achievement of Full Rights) to establish a formal faction failed due to the resistance of the Jewish liberals, termed by Ezra Mendelsohn as “integrationists”.27 The “integrationists” insisted on the ideological principle that Jews in Russia were part of the Russian political nation and not a nation apart.28 In the Second Duma, the Muslim deputies again established a separate Muslim faction, which was allied with the Kadets (the left-wing Muslims formed the “Muslim Laborers’ Group”, which was associated with the Trudovik faction),29 while Jewish deputies joined the Kadets. Thus, the experience of the first two Dumas showed that the forces favoring integration into Russian society were much stronger among Jews. It seems that there were no Muslim politicians in and around the Duma who opposed a separate Muslim faction as a matter of ­political principle, as did the Jewish integrationists.30 The analysis of proceedings of the first two Dumas does not show a specific cooperation between Jewish and Muslim deputies. All of them were part of the Kadet-dominated liberal opposition (or of the leftist Trudovik faction),  and therefore participated in the common actions and ballots of the opposition.

26 Usmanova, Musul’manskie predstaviteli, 151–153; Iskhakov, Pervaia russkaia revoliutsiia, 224. 27 Mendelsohn, E., On Modern Jewish Politics (New York/Oxford, 1993), 6–17, esp. 16. 28 For  a discussion of the issue of separate factions see Protokoly tret’ego delegatskogo s’ezda Soiuza dlia dostizheniia polnopraviia evreiskogo naroda v Rossii (Obshchestva polnopraviia evreiskogo naroda v Rossii) v S.-Peterburge s 10-go po 13-oe Fevralia 1906 g. (St. Petersburg, 1906), 106–107. 29 Arsharuni/Gabidullin, Ocherki panslavizma i pantiurkizma v Rossii, 35–38; Usma­ nova, Musul’manskie predstaviteli, 167–175; Iskhakov, Pervaia russkaia revoliutsiia, 269–271. 30 Usmanova discusses examples of the negative stance toward the Muslim faction, but it was either because the faction’s program was too “left” (M. Shakhtakhtinskii), or because the views of the critic were too left (F. Tuktarov), but not by the principal recognition of the importance of participation in general factions. Usmanova, Musul’manskie predstaviteli, 222, 225–226.

Common Problems, Different Solutions 73

The period of half-constitutional monarchy, 1907–1914 The First Russian Revolution ended with the coup d’état of June 3, 1907, the ­essence of which was the dismissal of the Second Duma and the promulgation of a new electoral law. This law altered the electoral system to the favor of the conservative forces in Russian politics. Therefore, the Third Duma, elected according to the law of June 3, was dominated by the conservatives. Only onethird of its members belonged to the opposition (including the Kadets and Progressists), while another third constituted the right wing (Rightists, Moderate Rightist and Russian Nationalists), and the final third belonged to the liberalconservative Union of 17 October. The members of the latter, known as Octobrists, were the main allies of the Prime Minister Peter Stolypin and continued to support him even after he concluded an alliance with the Nationalists.31 This composition of the Duma destroyed all hopes of achieving civil equality, not to mention any forms of national autonomy. Therefore, Duma members representing non-dominant ethnic and national groups turned their ­focus on attempts to achieve some real improvements in the life of those groups within the framework of the existing regime. The Polish Koło, for example, concentrated on the introduction of self-government in the cities of the Kingdom of ­Poland, and thus began to collaborate with the government of Piotr Stolypin and his allies in the Duma, the Octobrists.32 Muslim and Jewish deputies pursued the same strategy. One of the two Jewish Duma members, Lazar Nisselovich, hoped to achieve some practical results with the support of the Octobrists and Stolypin.33 In November 1908, Nisselovich said in an interview with the Hebrew newspaper Hed Ha-zman that there are “honest, good, and frank” people among Octobrists and even among the Rightists, and that their antisemitism was caused by their ignorance of the Jewish question. Therefore, “in private talks, constant meetings we can show their errors in their opinion about Jews, to prove them oppression 31 On the Third Duma see Levin, A., The Third Duma, Election and Profile (Hamden, Conn., 1973); Hosking, G., The Russian Constitutional Experiment: Government and Duma, 1907–1914 (Cambridge, 1973); Pinchuk, B.-C., The Octobrists in the Third Duma, 1907–1912 (Seattle, 1974); Avrekh, A., Stolypin i tret’ia Duma (Moscow, 1968); Diakin, V., Samoderzhavie, burzhuaziia i dvorianstvo v 1907–1911 gg. (Leningrad, 1978). 32 On the bill about self-government in Polish cities see Weeks, T., “Nationality and ­Municipality: Reforming City Government in the Kingdom of Poland, 1904–1915,” Russian History – Histoire Russe 21 (1994), 23–47; Weeks, T., Nation and State in Late Imperial Russia: Nationalism and Russification on the Western Frontier, 1863–1914 (DeKalb, 1996), 152–171; Chmielewski, The Polish Question, 138–160; Avrekh, A., Tsarizm i trer’eiiun’skaia sistema (Moscow, 1966), 97–101. 33 On Nisselovich’s politics see Levin, V., Ha-politika ha-yehudit ba-imperiya ha-rusit, 1907–1914 (Jerusalem forthcoming), chapter 3.

74  Vladimir Levin and injustice made in relation to the Jews, eradicate prejudices towards us and to turn them, in this way, to our favor”.34 Since the full civil equality of Jews was not acceptable to Octobrists and Stolypin, Nisselovich concentrated his efforts on abolishing the Pale of Settlement – the most deeply felt anti-Jewish legislation because it restricted Jewish settlement to the fifteen western provinces of the empire. He voiced this idea already in 1908 and continued to propagate it during the whole period of the Third Duma, until 1912.35 After a long struggle with Jewish liberals, who opposed the idea of “partial improvements” and demanded full equality, N ­ isselovich brought his bill abolishing the Pale of Settlement before the Duma in May 1910. The bill was signed by 160 parliament members, consisting of the whole opposition, including the Muslim and Polish factions, and twenty-five Octobrists. In the preliminary discussion on February 9, 1911, Octobrists voted together with the opposition to transfer the bill to  a commission, but the Octobrist-dominated commission never issued its report, and the bill remained “buried” there until the end of the Third Duma in June 1912.36 Nisselovich’s hope to get Octobrists’ support turned out to be unrealistic as they clearly preferred to preserve the status quo when it came to this cardinal issue of Jewish inequality. His attempt to achieve a partial improvement of Jewish situation, i. e. the abolition of the Pale, was a failure, like all his attempts to alter other bills containing small-scale antiJewish restrictions. The Muslim members of the Third Duma also moved to the right in comparison with the positions they had held in the first two Dumas. The Muslim faction tried to establish friendly relations with the Octobrists, and one Muslim deputy even joined the Octobrist faction.37 In 1909 Sadretdin Maksudov, a leader of the Muslim faction, declared that it was only possible to push Octobrists to make some concessions in favor of non-Russian nationalities through persuasion.38 His sentiments were very similar to those of Nisselovich, cited above. Like the attempts of the Jewish deputies, those of the Muslim ones to improve the legal position of the Muslim population were largely in vain. However, they succeeded in influencing the 1912 law on military service so that the Muslim “clergy” was exempt from conscription.39 Additionally, reform of the electoral 34 Hed Ha-zman, 61 (10.11.1907), 1. 35 Rassvet, 6 (9.2.1908), 6; “Beseda s L. N. Nisselovichem” Rassvet, 7 (13.2.1911), 4; Nisse­ lo­v ich L., “Pravda prevyshe vsego”, Rassvet, 27 (6.7.1912), 3–6. 36 Poliakov, S., “Poimionnoe golosovanie 9 fevralia”, Evreiskii mir 7 (17.2.1911), 3–8; Nisselovich, “Pravda prevyshe vsego”, Rassvet 27 (6.7.1912), 3; Rassvet, 28 (13.7.1912), 7–8. See also Rassvet, 3 (20.1.1912), 36; Rassvet 22 (1.6.1912), 22. 37 Usmanova, Musul’manskie predstaviteli, 231–234. Arsharuni/Gabidullin, Ocherki pan­ slavizma i pantiurkizma v Rossii, 38–42. 38 Usmanova, Musul’manskie predstaviteli, 233. 39 Yamaeva L. A., Musul’manskie deputaty Gosudarstvennoi dumy Rossii, 1906–1917 gg., sbornik dokumentov i materialov (Ufa, 1998), 97.

Common Problems, Different Solutions 75

system of the Muslim “clergy” in the Tauride province was undertaken with the full support of the government.40 At the same time, similar initiatives by Orthodox rabbis (see below) were not considered by the government and never introduced to the Duma. Despite the fact that the Muslim faction and the Jewish deputies (as members of the Kadet faction) belonged to the opposition, cooperation between them was minimal. For example, attempts to change the bill on obligatory rest for employees in trade, which proclaimed Sunday the only day of cessation of commercial activities and thus undermined the commerce of the non-Christian population, were made separately by Jews and Muslims.41 The Muslim faction brought forth an amendment to allow Muslims to rest on Friday, while Jewish deputy Naftali Friedman spoke in the Duma solely about the situation of Jews.42 Only the amendment proposed by the Kadet faction aimed at the protection of both Jews and Muslims, but it was not accepted by the Duma.43 The lack of cooperation on such a question of common significance was a direct continuation of the mutual disregard already notable in the year of the revolution. In addition, it indicated that the Muslim Duma members, witnessing the increasing antisemitism of the state and of Russian conservatives, preferred to distance themselves from Jews. These politics became even more apparent in the Fourth Duma. After the Beilis blood libel ended in autumn 1913 with the acquittal of Mendel Beilis but the jury’s recognition that a ritual murder had indeed taken place, the Rightist faction in the Duma introduced  a bill prohibiting Jewish ritual slaughter (shehitah).44 Muslim deputies and press began to worry that the prohibition of shehitah would cause the prohibition of Muslim slaughter (halal) as well.45 As a consequence, according to Vladimir Grossman, a correspondent of several Jewish newspapers in the Duma, “Rightists and some right-wing Octobrists spoke to the Muslim deputies […] and said that this matter should not apply to them”. According to Grossman, the authors of the bill even changed 40 Yamaeva, Musul’manskie deputaty, 197–198. 41 For a discussion of the problem in general see Geraci, R., ‘Sunday Laws and EthnoCommercial Rivalry in the Russian Empire, 1880s–1914,’ National Council on Eurasian and East European Research, 2006. 42 Contrary to Friedman, the Eighth Conference of the Bund in 1910 demanded the establishment of three days of weekly rest (Friday, Saturday, and Sunday) in order to allow “Christian, Jewish, and Muslim trade proletariat” to “satisfy their cultural needs.” See Otchiot o VIII konferentsii Bunda (Geneva, 1911), 83; Berukht fun der VIII konferents fun bund ­([Geneva], [1911]), 75–76. 43 Rassvet, 19 (9.5.1910), 27–29; Yamaeva, Musul’manskie deputaty, 140–141. For a detailed discussion of the issue concerning the Muslims see Usmanova, Musul’manskie predstaviteli, 351–375, esp. 362. 44 Vestnik evreiskoi obshchiny, 2 (February 1914), 42–48. 45 Usmanova, Musul’manskie predstaviteli, 435–436.

76  Vladimir Levin the wording and stressed that the prohibition refers specifically to Jewish shehitah.46 The anti-Jewish bill got the support of the Ministries of Interior and Justice and had a good chance to be accepted by the Duma and become law.47 Grossman’s opinion was that “our closest task is to coordinate our actions with the actions of Muslims”.48 However, this coordination never took place. Instead, the Jewish and Muslim Duma members found themselves in an open conflict about the issue of the bar. According to the law of 1889, “admission of the people of non-Christian creeds” to the bar needed the permission of the Minister of Justice.49 This law was introduced in order to keep Jews out of the bar, and during the period of 1889 to 1904, not a single Jew became an advocate with full rights (prisiazhnyi poverennyi). Permissions were easily distributed during the revolution, but from 1907 on, the Minister of Justice Ivan Shcheglovitov – a strident Russian nationalist – ceased granting them not only to Jews, but also to Muslims. The Senate’s interpretation of the law in 1912 expanded the need for the Minister’s permission to the assistants of advocates (pomoshchniki prisiazhnykh poverennykh) as well, so that entry to the juridical profession by Jews and Muslims was prohibited. In the beginning of 1913, the Muslim faction began preparations to introduce  a bill repealing this law and, according to  a Jewish parliamentary correspondent, an informal agreement coordinating actions between Jews and Muslims was reached.50 However, in February 1914, Muslim deputy Magomet Dalgat, a member of the Progressist faction, and five out of six members of the Muslim faction, introduced  a bill that sought to repeal the above-mentioned law only for persons of Muslim religion. The explanatory preamble to the bill directly mentioned that the law was promulgated as an anti-Jewish measure: “Such a restriction, which is almost the smallest one in the long row of restrictions on the persons of Jewish religion, has no connection to the persons of Muslim creed, for whom all governmental and elected positions were always open. […] Leaving aside the general question on Jewish equality […] we do not see any basis for the above-mentioned restrictions concerning the persons of Muslim religion.”51 The favorable vote of the Duma on such a bill would mean sanctioning Jewish inequality by the representatives of the people and therefore was 46 Grossman, V., “Bor’ba so shkhitoi”, Vestnik evreiskoi obshchiny, 3 (March 1914), 39. 47 Vestnik evreiskoi obshchiny, 1 (January 1914), 50; Vestnik evreiskoi obshchiny, 3 (March 1914), 40; Novyi Voskhod 3 (28.1.1914), 21; Novyi Voskhod 10 (13.3.1914), 17; Löwe, H.-D., The Tsars and the Jews: Reform, Reaction and Anti-Semitism in Imperial Russia, 1772–1917 (Chur 1993), 296. 48 Grossman, V., “Bor’ba so shkhitoi”, Vestnik evreiskoi obshchiny 3 (March 1914), 41. 49 Svod Zakonov, vol. XVI, part 1, publ. 1892, Uchrezhdenia Sudebnykh Ustavov, note to clause 380. 50 V. Gr. [Vladimir Grossman], “V Gosudarstvennoi Dume”, Novyi Voskhod 7 (20.2.1914), 22–23. See also, Usmanova, Musul’manskie predstaviteli, 265. 51 Yamaeva, Musul’manskie deputaty, 232–233.

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unacceptable to Jewish liberals and their Kadet allies. Some of the Kadet members signed the Muslim bill, but after a scandal they recalled their signatures. In March 1914, Jewish deputy Friedman introduced a “Jewish” bill, canceling the right of the Minister of Justice to control entry to the bar altogether. This bill was signed by 70 Kadets and Progressists, as well as by the chairman of the Muslim faction, Kutlug-Mukhammed Tevkelev, who whished to ease the unpleasant situation.52 However, when the commission on juridical matters of the Duma discussed both bills, the “Muslim” bill was unanimously accepted and even widened to include also the Karaites. But when the time to vote on the “Jewish” bill arrived, members of the Rightist, Nationalist, and Octobrist factions left the commission room and thus made it impossible for the vote to be held. In this way the “Jewish” bill was not even discussed, but simply removed from the agenda.53 The attitude of the government to the “Muslim” bill was initially negative, but in December 1915 the Council of Ministers removed all restrictions on the acceptance of Muslims and Karaites to the bar, and at the same time established a numerus clausus for Jewish advocates and prohibited Jews from becoming assistants of advocates until the time when the number of Jewish advocates would fit the newly established quota.54 The conflict about the bill on advocates brought to the deterioration in relations between the Muslim faction and the Kadets, accused of caring only about Jewish problems.55 At the same time, relations between Jewish deputies and the Kadets also worsened. Still in the Third Duma, Nisselovich openly criticized the Kadets’ leadership explaining that “merciless experience taught me to discern the true character” of the faction.56 The Kadets did not have any sympathy for him either, and Pavel Miliukov expressed his wish that Jews choose “a more gifted representative” in the elections of 1912.57 The general tactics of the Kadet faction until 1909 not to react to abuses of Jews by the Right-wing Duma members caused dissatisfaction even among the pro-Kadet Jewish liberals, and the Zionist press attacked the Kadets for voting for liberal-oriented bills, which included small anti-Jewish restrictions. 52 Grossman, V., “V Gosudarstvennoi Dume”, Novyi Voskhod 10 (13.3.1914), 17. See also, Usmanova, Musul’manskie predstaviteli, 265–266. 53 V. Gr. [Vladimir Grossman], “V Gosudarstvennoi Dume”, Novyi Voskhod 16 (25.4.1914), 23. See also, Usmanova, Musul’manskie predstaviteli, 265–266. 54 Gimpel’son, Ia.I., Zakony o evreiakh: Dobavlenie k knige, ed. Leontii Bramson (Petrograd, 1916), 25–26; Usmanova, Musul’manskie predstaviteli, 308. 55 Usmanova, Musul’manskie predstaviteli, 266. See also, Kriven’kii, V. “Ittifak el muslimin”, in Politicheskie partii Rossii. Konets XIX – pervaia tret’ XX veka. Entsiklopedia (Moscow, 1996), 231. 56 Nisselovich, “Pravda prevyshe vsego”, Rassvet 26 (29.6.1912), 3. 57 Haynt, 168 (20.7.1912), 2.

78  Vladimir Levin Relations between Jews and the Kadets improved during the first two years of the Fourth Duma. However, with the beginning of the First World War, the Kadet leadership and especially Miliukov took up a “patriotic” position and refused to raise questions about the persecution of Jews as potential spies by military authorities and, starting in January 1915, about the mass deportations of Russian Jews by the Russian army.58 The Muslim deputies, in their turn, were antagonized by the sharp anti-Turkish stance of the Kadets already during the Balkan Wars of 1912–1913, which only intensified after the Ottoman Empire entered the World War in 1914.59 The relationship of the Jewish and Muslim Duma members to the Kadet faction worsened even more in August 1915, when the Kadets initiated the establishment of the Progressive Bloc  – the majority coalition of the Fourth Duma. In order to be able to cooperate with antisemites among right-wing Octobrists and left-wing Russian Nationalists, the Kadets disavowed their traditional goal of full civil equality and the Bloc’s program included only the call for “entry upon the path of abolishing restrictions on the rights of Jews”.60 All three Jewish deputies, as members of the Kadet faction, joined the Bloc, but announced their withdrawal in June 1916 because the Bloc disregarded the Jewish question.61 The Muslim faction openly expressed its wish to join the Bloc, but it was not even invited to do so.62 With Turkey fighting on the side of Russia’s enemies, the Muslim deputies found themselves marginalized and isolated from the Kadets and the conservatives. In February 1916,  a conference of Muslim public activists with the faction decided that Muslim deputies had to co­operate during ballots with representatives of other national minorities and thus create a kind of “bloc of inorodtsy”.63 The Muslim faction’s attempts to balance be 58 On the deportations of Russian Jews during the First World War see Goldin, S., “Deportation of Jews by the Russian Military Command, 1914–1915”, Jews in Eastern Europe 41:1 (Spring 2000), 40–73. On the positions of the Kadets during the war see Dumova, N. G., Kadets­kaia partiia v period pervoi mirovoi voiny i Fevral’skoi revoliutsii (Moscow, 1988), 11–28. 59 Iskhakov, S. M., ‘Musul’manskii liberalizm v Rossii v nachale XX veka’, in V. V. Shelo­ chaev (ed.), Russkii liberalizm: istoricheskie sud’by i perspektivy (Moscow, 1999), 401; Usma­ nova, Musul’manskie predstaviteli, 236–238. 60 Pavlov, D. B./Shelokhaev, V. V. (ed.), Rossiiskie liberaly: kadety i oktiabristy (dokumenty, vospominaniia, publitsistika) (Moscow, 1996), 77. 61 On the Jewish question in the Progressive Bloc see Hamm, M. F., “Liberalism and the Jewish Question: The Progressive Bloc”, Russian Review 31 (1972), 163–172; Ganelin, R., “Gosu­darstvennaia Duma i antisemitskie tsirkuliary 1915–1916 godov”, Vestnik Evreis­kogo universiteta v Moskve 3:10 (1995), 4–37; Goldin, S., Russkoe evreistvo pod kontrolem tsarskikh vlastei v gody Pervoi mirovoi voiny, Ph.D. diss., Hebrew University of Jerusalem, 2005, 369–377. 62 Usmanova, Musul’manskie predstaviteli, 238–239. 63 Yamaeva, Musul’manskie deputaty, 207–208. See, Mindlin, A., Gosudarstvennaia Duma Rossiiskoi imperii i evreiskii vopros (St. Petersburg, 2014), 396.

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tween the opposition and the conservatives in order to achieve some practical gains had turned fruitless by 1916, it therefore began to look for rapprochement with other non-dominant groups. Scarce parliamentary activities in 1916 and the revolution of 1917 did not allow this strategy to develop further.

Islamophobia versus antisemitism The attitude of pro-governmental parties in the Duma toward Jews and Muslims did not significantly differ from the attitude of the government itself. The most prominent feature of this attitude was the readiness to support Muslim conservatives and the refusal to support Jewish conservatives, mostly religious Orthodox. Beginning in 1907, Jewish Orthodox leaders attempted to conclude  a kind of alliance with the government. They asserted that the Russian state should recognize traditional “spiritual” rabbis (dukhovnye ravviny) and provide them with official status, including exemption from military service. Thus, conservative “spiritual” rabbis would be able to influence Jewish youth, known for its active participation in anti-governmental movements, to strengthen its religiosity and, as a consequence, its loyalty to the Tsar and government. Stolypin’s initial steps cherished hopes that these ideas of Orthodoxy were being accepted: the Ministry of the Interior initiated a meeting of rabbis in the provinces in 1908 and convened the Rabbinical Commission with an extremely broad agenda in 1910. In the end, however, not a single measure recommended by the rabbis or formulated by the Commission was undertaken, and the Orthodox rabbis did not get any governmental support in their struggle against Jewish liberals and revolutionaries.64 Certain circles in the government attempted to make antisemitism a key part of the new state ideology.65 As Hans Rogger convincingly showed, they succeeded to a significant degree, but a much more important result of their activities was the fact that the antisemitic atmosphere prevented more moderate officials from developing pragmatic politics toward the Jews, to solve real problems of internal Jewish life, and to support conservative forces in Jewish society. All attempts by Jewish Orthodoxy to find a common language with the government on the basis of conservatism and to secure governmental support in its struggle against “progressive” Jewish currents ended without success. 64 On the relationship between the government and Orthodoxy see Levin, V., “Orthodox Jewry and the Russian Government: An Attempt at Rapprochement, 1907–1914”, East European Jewish Affairs 39:2 (August 2009), 187–204. 65 Rogger, H., Jewish Policies and Right-Wing Politics in Imperial Russia (Berkley/Los Angeles, 1986), 51–55.

80  Vladimir Levin At the same time, the government was ready to support the conservative Muslim “clergy”, the Kadimists, in their struggle against the progressive movement of Jadidism.66 This support could be explained by two factors. The first is the traditional imperial policy of supporting “orthodox” Islam against “heresies” and reforms, described by Robert Crews, which survived into the early twentieth century to a significant degree.67 The second factor was the conviction that Jadidism would strengthen pan-Islamism and pan-Turkism. It seems that in reality, both movements among Russian Muslims were quite marginal, what Robert Geraci has called a “double specter”.68 However, officials believed in their existence and made realistic political calculations with regard to them. In order to counteract those “pan”-movements, the government not only implemented restrictive measures,69 but also found conservative allies among the Muslims. In order to support the allies, the government granted them minor concessions such as the above-mentioned exemption from military service for Muslim “clergy” and alterations in the electoral system of that “clergy” in Crimea. The government refused to look for allies and to make similar concessions in the questions concerning Jews: neither the principle of the “confessional state,” nor pragmatic considerations of the value of nourishing conservative allies were applied after 1907 and especially after 1910. The concessions to the Muslim population were not restricted to the realm of religion alone. In 1913, the Department of Police in the Ministry of the Interior permitted the establishment of the all-Russian political Muslim organization Sirat al-Mustakim. The Arabic name of the new organization was taken from the Quran, where it means “straight path”.70 The founders of the organization translated it into the Russian as the “Right Way” (Pravyi put’), thus in-

66 Geraci, R., “Russian Orientalism at an Impasse: Tsarist Education Policy and the 1910 Conference on Islam”, in D. R. Brower/E. Lazzerini (ed.), Russia’s Orient: Imperial Borderlands and Peoples, 1700–1917 (Bloomington/Indianapolis, 1997), 138–161, here on pp. 150–152. On Kadimists see Dudoignon, S.,“Qu’est-ce que la ‘Qadîmiya’? Éléments de sociologie du traditionalisme musulman, en Islam de Russie et de Transoxiane (de la fin du XVIIIe siècle au début du XXe)  ”, in S.  Dudoignon/D. Is’haqov/R. Möhämmätschin (ed.), L’Islam de Russie: Conscience communautaire et autonomie politique chez les Tatars de la Volga et de l’Oural depuis le XVIIIe siècle (Paris, 1997), 207–225. On the struggle against Jadid schools see Farkhshatov, M. N., Samoderzhavie i traditsionnye shkoly Bashkir i tatar v nachale XX veka (1900–1917 gg.) (Ufa, 2000), 63–106; Arsharuni/Gabidullin, Ocherki panslavizma i pantiurkizma v Rossii, 11–22, 101–113. 67 Crews, For Prophet and Tsar. 68 Geraci, R., Window on the East: National and Imperial Identities in Late Tsarist Russia (Ithaca/London, 2001), 277–284. 69 See Geraci, “Russian Orientalism at an Impasse” and Geraci, Window on the East, 264–308. 70 Quran, 1:6, 42:53, 43:42, translation by Arthur John Arberry, The Koran Interpreted (1955).

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dicating their right-wing political views. The goal of Sirat al-Mustakim was to represent the empire’s Muslims in a conservative vein, stressing their loyalty to the Tsar and the Motherland.71 In 1914, a convention of Muslims officially gathered in St. Petersburg and discussed reforms in the issues of the “clergy” and the legalization of Muslim communities.72 At the same time, attempts to establish right-wing Jewish organizations were always prevented, and the hopes of Jewish liberals to legalize and reform Jewish communities found no understanding in the government.73 Despite the perception of both Muslims and Jews as disloyal and suspicious subjects, the approach of the government and pro-governmental parties to both groups was different. Jews were seen as an especially harmful, dangerous and – most important – homogeneous group that intended to destroy the Russian state.74 The fear of pan-Islamism and pan-Turkism turned out to be not as obsessive as anti-Semitism. The government refused to undertake differentiated politics toward the Jews and to cooperate with the conservative forces in their midst, but was quite ready to support conservatives among the Muslims. The efforts of Jewish politicians’ to achieve some real improvements were fruitless and Jewish politics after 1910–1911 show clear signs that its actors perceived this. Muslim politicians, on the contrary, could count on certain concessions, although minor and inconsistent, and as a consequence showed a readiness to become close to Russian conservatives.

Conclusion This article demonstrates that common problems encountered by the Jewish and Muslim populations of the Russian Empire did not bring about cooperation between their political elites. Both of them were occupied with their own group and on their respective relations with the imperial center. During the revolutionary years and the work of the first two Dumas, those elites sought the support of the liberal Constitutional-Democratic Party and overlooked the ex 71 For details on this organization see Iskhakov, S. M., “Musul’manskii liberal’nyi konservatizm v Rossii v nachale XX veka”, in: Liberal’nyi konservatizm: istoriia i sovremennost’ (Moscow, 2001), 366–368; Farkhshatov, Samoderzhavie, 99–100. 72 Diakin, V., Natsional’nyi vopros vo vnutrennei politike tsarizma (XIX – nachalo XX vv.) (St. Petersburg 1998), 164–166. 73 On the issue of Jewish communities in 1907–1914 see Levin, Ha-politika ha-yehudit, chapters 17–19. 74 On the negative meanings of the word “Jew” in Russia see Goldin, S., “Evrei kak poniatie v istorii imperskoi Rossii”, in: Poniatiia o Rossii: k istoricheskoi semantike imperskogo perioda (Moscow, 2012), vol. II, 340–391, and esp. 377–389. The best work on Russian antisemitism is still Rogger, H., Jewish Policies and Right-Wing Politics in Imperial Russia.

82  Vladimir Levin istence of another group with similar demands. After the coup of June 3, 1907, both elites (or  a significant part of them) attempted to find allies among the pro-governmental faction of the Union of 17 October and in the government itself. While the Kadets were faithful to the ideal of general equality, the Octobrists and the ruling bureaucracy clearly preferred Muslims to Jews. Therefore the Muslim politicians could hope for minor concessions, while the Jewish ones could not. The conservative government and pro-governmental forces were ready to cooperate with conservatives among Muslims but not among Jews. The different approaches of imperial elites in the early twentieth century were rooted in the past and in the degree of integration achieved by Jews and Muslims. It seems that Muslims – as a collective – were much more integrated into the imperial space and into the self-image of the Russian Empire than Jews (while Jews were more integrated as individuals in Russian society). There is no doubt that Muslim and Jewish “masses” occupied an equally distant place in the imperial structure, but on the symbolic level at least, Muslims were perceived as participants, while Jews for the most part were not. This symbolic inclusion could be seen, for example, in the existence of Muslim officers and generals, of the Muslim military escort in the tsar’s guards, and of Muslim “clerics” serving Muslim soldiers of the Russian army. All attempts by Jewish “clerics”, on the contrary, to be appointed as military rabbis ended in vain.75 Another symbolic expression of this difference in approach could be seen in St. Petersburg. The synagogue, the building of which had started during the 1870s, the most promising time for Jewish integration into imperial structures, had – and still has – no role in the capital’s cityscape and can hardly be found without a guide.76 The mosque, on the contrary, was placed in 1907 in the historical center of the capital; it was consecrated during the festivities of the 300th anniversary of the Romanov dynasty in 1913, and its high minarets could be seen from the Winter Palace  – the official residence of the Russian Emperor.77 Notwithstanding those symbolic differences, Russian nationalism (including antisemitism and Islamophobia) became so dominant in the last decade of the existence of the empire that there were no real chances to solve any problems of non-dominant groups in a way that would satisfy those groups. Therefore, it is no wonder that all minorities, including Jews and Muslims, joyfully accepted the collapse of the Romanov Empire in February 1917. 75 See the contribution by Franziska Davies in this volume. 76 Levin, V., “The St. Petersburg Jewish Community and the Capital of the Russian Empire: An Architectural Dialogue”, in A. Cohen-Mushlin/H. Thies (ed.), Jewish Architecture in Europe (Petersberg, 2010), 197–217. 77 For an overview of the mosque’s history see Ivanov, M., Sobornaia mechet’ v Peterburge (St. Petersburg, 2006), 7–34.

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Bibliography Arsharuni, A./Gabidullin, G., Ocherki panslavizma i pantiurkizma v Rossii (Moscow, 1931). Ascher, A., The Revolution of 1905, 2 vols. (Stanford, 1988–1992). Avrekh, A., Stolypin i tret’ia Duma (Moscow, 1968). Avrekh, A., Tsarizm i trer’eiiun’skaia sistema (Moscow, 1966). Auch, E.-M, “Muslime in den kaukasischen Dumawahlen 1906”, in D. Dahlmann/P. Trees (ed.), Von Duma zu Duma. Hundert Jahre russischer Parlamentarismus (Bonn, 2009), 199–228. Bobrovnikov, V., “Chto vyshlo iz proektov sozdaniia v Rossii inorodtsev? (otvet Dzhonu Slokumu iz musul’manskikh okrain imperii)”, in A. Miller/I. Schierle/D. S. Sdvizhkov (ed.), Poniatiia o Rossii: k istoricheskoi semantike imperskogo perioda (Moscow, 2012), vol. II, 259–291. Chmielewski, E., The Polish Question in the Russian State Duma (Knoxville, 1970). Crews, R., “Islamic Law, Imperial Order: Muslims, Jews, and the Russian State”, Ab Imperio 3 (2004), 567–490. Crews, R., “Empire and Confessional State: Islam and Religious Politics in Nineteenth-­ Century Russia”, American Historical Review 108:1 (February 2003), 50–83. Crews, R., For Prophet and Tsar. Islam and Empire in Russia and Central Asia (Cambridge, 2006). Diakin, V., Natsional’nyi vopros vo vnutrennei politike tsarizma (XIX–nachalo XX vv.) (St. Petersburg, 1998). Diakin, V., Samoderzhavie, burzhuaziia i dvorianstvo v 1907–1911 gg. (Leningrad, 1978). Dubnov, S. M., Kniga zhizni, vol. 2 (Riga, 1935). Dudoignon, S., “Qu’est-ce que la ‘Qadîmiya’? Éléments de sociologie du traditionalisme musulman, en Islam de Russie et de Transoxiane (de la fin du XVIIIe siècle au début du XXe) ”, in S. Dudoignon/D. Is’haqov/R. Möhämmätschin (ed.), L’Islam de Russie: Conscience communautaire et autonomie politique chez les Tatars de la Volga et de l’Oural depuis le XVIIIe siècle (Paris, 1997), 207–225. Dumova, N. G., Kadetskaia partiia v period pervoi mirovoi voiny i Fevral’skoi revoliutsii (Moscow, 1988). Fakhrutdinov, R. R., Materialy i dokumenty po istorii obshchestvenno-politicheskogo dvizheniia sredi tatar (1905–1917 gg.) (Kazan, 1992). Fakhrutdinov, R. R., “Tatarskoe liberal’no-demokraticheskoe dvizhenie v kontse XIX–na­ chale XX vv.: ideologiia i politicheskaia programma”, abstract of dissertation, Kazan, 1996. Farkhshatov, M. N., Samoderzhavie i traditsionnye shkoly Bashkir i tatar v nachale XX veka (1900–1917 gg.) (Ufa, 2000). Fomin, V. M. (ed.), Programmnye dokumenty natsional’nykh politicheskikh partii i organi­ zatsii Rossii (konets XIX v.–1917 g.) (Moscow, 1996). Fortna, B.C/Katsikas, S.  et al (ed.), State-Nationalisms in the Ottoman Empire, Greece and Turkey: Orthodox and Muslims, 1830–1945 (London/New York, 2013). Frankel, J., “S. M. Dubnov: Historian and Ideologist”, in S. Dubnov-Erlich (ed.), The Life and Work of S. M. Dubnov: Diaspora Nationalism and Jewish History (Bloomington/India­ napolis, 1991), 1–33. Frankel, J., Prophecy and Politics: Socialism, Nationalism and the Russian Jews, 1862–1917 (Cambridge, 1981). Frumkin, Ia.G., “Iz istorii russkogo evreistva”, in Kniga o russkom evreistve ot 1860-kh godov do revoliutsii 1917 g. (New York, 1960), 62–67. Ganelin, R., “Gosudarstvennaia Duma i antisemitskie tsirkuliary 1915–1916 godov”, Vestnik Evreiskogo universiteta v Moskve 3:10 (1995), 4–37. Gassenschmidt, C., Jewish Liberal Politics in Tsarist Russia, 1900–1914: The modernization of Russian Jewry (New York, 1995).

84  Vladimir Levin Geraci, R., ‘Sunday Laws and Ethno-Commercial Rivalry in the Russian Empire, 1880s–1914,’ National Council on Eurasian and East European Research, 2006. Geraci, R., “Russian Orientalism at an Impasse: Tsarist Education Policy and the 1910 Conference on Islam”, in D. Brower/E. Lazzerini (ed.), Russia’s Orient: Imperial Borderlands and Peoples, 1700–1917 (Bloomington/Indianapolis, 1997), 138–161. Gimpel’son, Ia.I., Zakony o evreiakh: Dobavlenie k knige, ed. Leontii Bramson (Petrograd, 1916). Goldin, S., “Evrei kak poniatie v istorii imperskoi Rossii”, in A. Miller/I. Schierle/D. S. Sdvizhkov (ed.), Poniatiia o Rossii: k istoricheskoi semantike imperskogo perioda (Moscow, 2012), vol. II, 340–391. Goldin, S., Russkoe evreistvo pod kontrolem tsarskikh vlastei v gody Pervoi mirovoi voiny, Ph.D. diss., Hebrew University of Jerusalem, 2005. Goldin, S., “Deportation of Jews by the Russian Military Command, 1914–1915”, Jews in ­Eastern Europe 41:1 (Spring 2000), 40–73. von Hagen, M., Die Entfaltung politischer Öffentlichkeit in Russland, 1906–1914 (Wiesbaden, 1982). Hamm, M., “Liberalism and the Jewish Question: The Progressive Bloc”, Russian Review 31 (1972), 163–172. Harcave, S., “The Jews and the First Russian National Election”, American Slavic and East ­European Review IX (1950), 33–41. Hilbrenner, A., Diaspora-Nationalismus: Zur Geschichtskonstruktion Simon Dubnows (Göttingen, 2007). Hoffman S./Mendelsohn E. (ed.), The Revolution of 1905 and Russia’s Jews (Philadelphia, 2008). Hosking, G., The Russian Constitutional Experiment: Government and Duma, 1907–1914 (Cambridge, 1973). Iskhakov, S. M., Pervaia russkaia revoliutsiia i musul’mane Rossiiskoi imperii (Moscow, 2007). Iskhakov, S. M., “Musul’manskii liberal’nyi konservatizm v Rossii v nachale XX veka”, in: Liberal’nyi konservatizm: istoriia i sovremennost’ (Moscow, 2001), 366–368. Iskhakov, S. M., “Musul’manskii liberalizm v Rossii v nachale XX veka”, in V. V. Shelochaev (ed.), Russkii liberalizm: istoricheskie sud’by i perspektivy (Moscow, 1999). Iskhakov, S. M., “Obshcherossiiskaia partiia musul’man,” in A. I. Zevelev et al (ed.), Istoriia natsional’nykh politicheskikh partii Rossii (Moscow, 1997), 214–239. Ivanov, M., Sobornaia mechet’ v Peterburge (St. Petersburg, 2006). Kappeler, A., Russland als Vielvölkerreich: Entstehung, Geschichte, Zerfall (Munich, 1993). Karlip, J., The Tragedy of a Generation: The Rise and Fall of Jewish Nationalism in Eastern ­Europe (Cambridge, 2013). Khabutdinov, A.Iu./Mukhetdinov, D. V., Vserossiiskie musul’manskie s‘ezdy, 1905–1906 gg. (Nizhnii Novgorod, 2005). Khalid, A., The Politics of Muslim Cultural Reform: Jadidism in Central Asia (Berkeley, CA , 1998). Koch, H., Die Russische Gesetzgebung über den Islam bis zum Ausbruch des Weltkrieges (Berlin, 1918). Kriven’kii, V. V./Tarasova,N. N. (ed.), Programmy politicheskikh partii Rossii, konets XIX–na­ chalo XX vv. (Moscow, 1995). Lazzerini, E., “Local Accomodation and Resistance to Colonialism in Nineteenth-Century Crimea”, in D. Brower/E. Lazzerini (ed.), Russia’s Orient: Imperial Borderlands and Peoples, 1700–1917 (Bloomington/Indianapolis, 1997), 169–187. Levin, A., The Third Duma, Election and Profile (Hamden, Conn., 1973). Levin, V., “Civil Law and Jewish Halakhah: Problems of Coexistence in the Late Russian Empire” in Y. Kleinmann/T. Wilson (ed.), Religion in the Mirror of Law: Eastern European Perspectives from the Early Modern Period till 1939 (Frankfurt am Main in print). Levin, V., Ha-politika ha-yehudit ba-imperiya ha-rusit, 1907–1914 (Jerusalem forthcoming).

Common Problems, Different Solutions 85 Levin, V., “The St. Petersburg Jewish Community and the Capital of the Russian Empire: An Architectural Dialogue”, in A. Cohen-Mushlin/H. Thies (ed.), Jewish Architecture in ­Europe (Petersberg, 2010), 197–217. Levin, V., “Die jüdischen Wähler und die Reichsduma”, in D. Dahlmann/P. Trees (ed.), Von Duma zu Duma. Hundert Jahre russischer Parlamentarismus (Bonn, 2009), 155–172. Levin, V., “Orthodox Jewry and the Russian Government: An Attempt at Rapprochement, 1907–1914”, East European Jewish Affairs 39:2 (August 2009), 187–204. Levin, V., “Russian Jewry and the Duma Elections, 1906–1907”, Jews and Slavs VII (2000), 233–264. Löwe, H.-D., The Tsars and the Jews: Reform, Reaction and Anti-Semitism in Imperial Russia, 1772–1917 (Chur, 1993). Mendelsohn, E., On Modern Jewish Politics (New York/Oxford, 1993). Mindlin, A., Gosudarstvennaia Duma Rossiiskoi imperii i evreiskii vopros (St. Petersburg, 2014). Mitsenmakher, B., Ha-brit le-hasagat mlo ha-zkhuyot la-am ha-yehudi be-rusiya, M. A. ­t hesis, Hebrew University of Jerusalem 1973. Nathans, B., Beyond the Pale: The Jewish Encounter with Late Imperial Russia (Berkeley, 2002). Noack, C., “Retrospectively Revolting: Kazan Tatar ‘conspiracies’ during the 1905 Revolution”, in J. Smele/A. Heywood (ed.), The Russian Revolution of 1905: Centenary Perspectives (Oxford/New York, 2008), 119–136. Orbach, A., “Zionism and the Russian Revolution of 1905: The Commitment to Participate in Domestic Political Life”, Bar-Ilan 24/25 (1989), 12–21. Pavlov, D. B./Shelokhaev, V. V. (ed.), Rossiiskie liberaly: kadety i oktiabristy (dokumenty, ­vospominaniia, publitsistika) (Moscow, 1996). Pinchuk, B.-C., The Octobrists in the Third Duma, 1907–1912 (Seattle, 1974). Protokoly Konferentsii rossiiskikh natsional’no-sotsialisticheskikh partii, 16–20 aprelia 1907 (St. Petersburg, 1908). Protokoly tret’ego delegatskogo s’ezda Soiuza dlia dostizheniia polnopraviia evreiskogo naroda v Rossii (Obshchestva polnopraviia evreiskogo naroda v Rossii) v S.-Peterburge s 10-go po 13-oe Fevralia 1906 g. (St. Petersburg, 1906). Rabinovich, S., Jewish Rights, National Rites: Nationalism and Autonomy in Late Imperial and Revolutionary Russia (Stanford, 2014). Rogger, H., Jewish Policies and Right-Wing Politics in Imperial Russia (Berkley/Los Angeles, 1986). Semyonov, A., “‘The Real and Live Ethnographic Map of Russia’: The Russian Empire in the Mirror of the State Duma”, in I. Gerasimov/J. Kusber/A. Semyonov (ed.), Empire Speaks Out: Languages of Rationalization and Self-Description in the Russian Empire (Leiden/ Boston, 2009), 191–228. Slocum, J., “Who, and When, Were the Inorodtsy? The Evolution of the Category of ‘Aliens’ in Imperial Russia”, Russian Review 57 (1998), 173–190. Szwarc, A./Wieczorkiewicz, P., “Uwagi o taktyce przedstawicielstwa polskiego w II Dumie Państwowej”, in A. Szwarc/P. Wieczorkiewicz (ed.), Unifikacja za wszelką cenę: Sprawy polskie w polityce rosyjskiej na przełomie XIX i XX wieku (Warsaw, 2002), 171–187. Vovshin, I., Tahalikh hitgabshuta shel yahadut rusiya le-or pe’ilut ‘ha-brit le-hasagat mlo ­ha-zkhuyot avur ha-am ha-yehudi be-rusiya’ bi-tkufat ha-mahapekha ha-rusit ha-rishona, 1905–1907, M. A. thesis, Haifa University, 2008. Walkin, J., The Rise of Democracy in Pre-Revolutionary Russia: Political and Social Institutions Under the Last Three Czars (London, 1963). Weeks, T., “Nationality and Municipality: Reforming City Government in the Kingdom of Poland, 1904–1915”, Russian History – Histoire Russe 21 (1994), 23–47.

86  Vladimir Levin Weeks, T., Nation and State in Late Imperial Russia: Nationalism and Russification on the Western Frontier, 1863–1914 (DeKalb, 1996). Werth, P., At the Margins of Orthodoxy: Mission, Governance, and Confessional Politics in Russia’s Volga-Kama Region, 1827–1905 (Ithaca/London, 2002). Stillschweig, K., “Nationalism and Autonomy among Eastern European Jewry: Origin and Historical Development up to 1939”, Historia Judaica 6 (1944), 27–68. Usmanova, D., Deputaty ot Kazanskoi gubernii v Gosudarstvennoi dume, 1906–1917 (Kazan, 2006). Usmanova, D., Musul’manskie predstaviteli v Rossiiskom parlamente, 1906–1916 (Kazan, 2005). Yamaeva L. A., Musul’manskie deputaty Gosudarstvennoi dumy Rossii, 1906–1917 gg., sbornik dokumentov i materialov (Ufa, 1998).

Newspapers and Periodicals Haynt Hed Ha-zman Novyi Voskhod Vestnik evreiskoi obshchiny Rassvet

David Schick

On Religion and Economy: A Business Network Analysis of a Jewish Textile Company from Nineteenth Century Łódź Is there  a connection between religious beliefs and economic practices? This question was already raised in the late seventeenth and early eighteenth cen­tu­ ries,1 but its contemporary version was coined 200 years later. While Karl Marx interpreted religion as a part of the cultural superstructure of society, therefore depicting it only as a tool for the enforcement of economic power structures,2 Max Weber claimed that religious concepts could heavily influence the economic habitus.3 Since then, controversies over the importance of religious beliefs, institutions, and moral conceptions for economic practices have broken out repeatedly.4 However, the discussion usually remained in the realm of abstract theories and generalizations; only in sociology and economics were  a small number of empirical studies published which were devoted to the connection between religion and the economy.5 1 Graf, F. W., “Beeinflussen religiöse Weltbilder den ökonomischen Habitus?”, in H. Berg­ hoff/J. Vogel (ed.), Wirtschaftsgeschichte als Kulturgeschichte: Dimensionen eines Perspektiven­ wechsels (Frankfurt am Main, 2004), 241–265, on p. 250. 2 Marx’ critique on religion can be found in condensed form in Marx, K., “Zur Judenfrage”, Deutsch-Französische Jahrbücher 1/2 (1844), 182–214. 3 For example see Weber, M., Die protestantische Ethik und der Geist des Kapitalismus (Tübingen, 1920), originally published 1904/1905. 4 Durkheim, E., Die elementaren Formen des religiösen Lebens (Frankfurt am Main, 1994), 1125; Neusner, J., Religious belief and economic behavior: Ancient Israel, classical Christianity, Islam, and Judaism, and contemporary Ireland and Africa (Atlanta, 1999), 25; Graf, F. W., “Be­einflussen religiöse Weltbilder den ökonomischen Habitus?”; Davis, N. Z., “Religion and Capitalism Once Again? Jewish Merchant Culture in the Seventeenth Century”, Representations Special Issue: The Fate of ‘Culture’: Geertz and Beyond 59 (1997), 56–84; Poettering, J., Handel, Nation und Religion: Kaufleute zwischen Hamburg und Portugal im 17. Jahrhundert (Göttingen, 2013); Eisenstadt, S. N. (ed.), The Protestant Ethic and Modernization (New York, 1968). 5 Iannaccone, L. R., “Introduction to the Economics of Religion”, Journal of Economic Literature XXXVI (1998), 1465–1496; Keister, L. A., Faith and money: How religion contributes to wealth and poverty (New York, 2011); Barro, R. J./McCleary, R. M., “Religion and Economy”, Journal of Economic Perspectives 20:2 (2006), 49–72; Rakodi, C., “A framework for Analysing the Links between Religion and Development”, Development in Practice 22:5/6 (2012), 634–650; Winterberg, J. M., Religion und Marktwirtschaft: Ordnungspolitische Vorstellungen im Christentum und Islam (Baden-Baden, 1994); Samuelsson, K., Religion and Economic

88  David Schick These studies, nearly all of them focusing on contemporary developments, showed that no empirical proof of religion’s influence on the economic sector could be established. But if we take Niklas Luhmann’s ideas on the genesis of the “religious system” into account, this claim does not seem to be valid for every point in time. According to Luhmann, one major trend of modernity was that religion lost the ability to define the authoritative cosmography and has since then only been regarded as a function inter alia.6 Therefore, studies that deal solely with the twentieth or twenty-first centuries cannot explore this complex issue in full depth. Rather, the relationship between religion and economy has to be studied by carrying out empirical studies taking a historical perspective. The Jewish world of Eastern Europe in the transition period to modernity is especially suited for this task, because until the end of the nineteenth century no separation between the secular and the religious spheres existed in this world. Furthermore, the empirical studies in sociology and economics mentioned above, usually focused on the connection between religious beliefs and economic progress. However, before one can explore such problems of higher complexity the basic question regarding the interaction between the religious and the economic systems should be addressed. In order to carry out this task I will look at economic practices from the standpoint of ethnology and historical anthropology; these disciplines introduced the culturally embedded nature of economic practices into the discussion.7 Additionally, relations between the economy and religion played  a major role in the field of Jewish studies at the beginning of the twentieth century. In this regard, Werner Sombart’s infamous book Die Juden und das Wirtschaftsleben (The Jews and Economic Life), first published in 1911, occupies a central position.8 Based on a very limited number of sources, Sombart tried to prove the existence of a close relationship between Judaism and capitalism. Sombart’s anti-Jewish bias expressed itself in his definition of capitalism: according to his point of view its main features were  a pure obsession with the accumulation of money and an addiction to profit. In addition, Nazi propaganda often used stereotypes of Jewish economic behavior in its anti­semitic agitation. ­ ction: The Protestant Ethic, the Rise of Capitalism, and the Absuses of Scholarship (Toronto, A 1993); Anderson, G. M./Tollison, R. D., “Morality and Monopoly: The Constitutional Political Economy of Religious Rules”, Cato Journal 12:2 (1992), 373–392. 6 Luhmann, N., Die Religion der Gesellschaft (Frankfurt am Main, 2002), 223. 7 Some exemplary works regarding this approach are: Granovetter, M., “Economic Action and Social Structure: The Problem of Embeddedness”, American Journal of Sociology 19:3 (1985), 481–510; Portes, A ./ Sensenbrenner, J., “Embeddedness and Immigration: Notes on the Social Determinants of Economic Action”, American Journal of Sociology 98:6 (1993), 1320–1350; and Schmiz, A., Transnationalität als Ressource? Netzwerke vietnamesischer ­Migrantinnen und Migranten zwischen Berlin und Vietnam (Bielefeld, 2011). 8 Sombart, W., Die Juden und das Wirtschaftsleben (München/Leipzig, 1928).

On Religion and Economy 89

Against the backdrop of this legacy it is not surprising that the field of economic history within Jewish studies was highly unpopular during the first decades after the Holocaust. While numerous scholars studied Jewish economic history in the first half of the twentieth century,9 only an undaunted few undertook research in this area after the war. Only in recent years has research in this field intensified.10 But notwithstanding the renewed interest in Jewish economic history we still lack accounts that focus on the influence of religious law, religious networks, religious institutions, and religious ethics on the economic practices of Jews. In this article, I want to introduce an empirical approach for investigating the relationship between religion and economy. I will carry out this task based on the business records of a Jewish textile manufacturer from Łódź named Markus Silberstein. After analyzing his business network and the religious distribution of his trade partners, I will put this into the context of the business behavior of other Łódź textile manufacturers. Finally, in my conclusion I will interpret the structure of Silberstein’s business network with regard to the relationship between religious beliefs and economic practices. Only  a few business records of Jewish entrepreneurs active in nineteenthcentury Russia have been preserved. The records of Silberstein’s company kept in the Archiwum Państwowe w Łodzi (APL) are an exception to this rule. However, the case of Markus Silberstein is not only relevant for pragmatic reasons, but also because of its exemplary nature. Silberstein was a member of the Jewish economic elite: He was a successful entrepreneur and had international business contacts. Moreover, as many other businessmen, Silberstein was a member of a non-orthodox congregation. In historiography the idea persists that the majority of the Jewish business elite was assimilated. It is assumed that their business practices were purely rational and not influenced by any kind of religious con 9 For the economic history of the east European Jews see Weinryb, B. D., Neueste Wirtschaftsgeschichte der Juden in Rußland und Polen: Von der 1.  polnischen Teilung bis zum Tode Alexanders II (1772–1881) (Hildesheim/New York 2, 1972); Lestschinsky, J.: “Die Umsiedlung und Umschichtung des jüdischen Volkes im Lauf des letzten Jahrhunderts”, Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv XXX /XXXII (1929/1930), 123–156, 563–599; Lestschinski, J., “Wilna, der Niedergang einer jüdischen Stadt”, Jüdische Wohlfahrtspflege und Sozialpolitik 2:1 (1931), 21–33; Schiper, I., Onhoyb fun kapitalizm bay yuden in Mayrev-Eyrope (Warsaw, 1920). Schiper, I., Yidishe geshikhte: virtshaftsgeshikhte (Warsaw, 1930); Schiper, I., Dzieje ­handlu żydowskiego na ziemiach polskich (Warsaw, 1937). 10 An excellent example is Sarah A. Stein’s study on Jewish trade networks: Stein, S. A., Plumes: Ostrich Feathers, Jews, and a Lost World of Global Commerce (New Haven, 2008). Stein’s study covers a global economy from South Africa to Europe and the United States; see also the edited volume by Reuveni, G./Wobick-Segev, S., (ed.) The Economy in Jewish History: New Perspectives on the Interrelationship between Ethnicity and Economic Life (New York, 2011), and Michael Toch’s book on the economic history the Jews in the Middle Ages: Toch, M., The Economic History of European Jews Late Antiquity and Early Middle Ages (Leiden, 2013).

90  David Schick siderations, which were seen as an obstacle to economic success.11 The case of Markus Silberstein provides an opportunity to test these assumptions. Closely connected to the complex of assimilation is the question whether Jewish businessmen conducted business primarily with other Jews. This topic has been highly controversial in Jewish economic history. Arcadius Kahan has argued that Jews had to form internal business networks in order to compensate for the economic disadvantages caused by discriminatory laws and regulations.12 The transaction costs of internal Jewish trade were just lower, Kahan claimed.13 However, this concept of “vertical integration”14 has been challenged by a study by Francesca Trivellato. In her book The Familiarity of Strangers, she focuses on two Jewish merchants in Early Modern Livorno who were able to establish and operate a business network with non-Jewish traders in India over a long period of time.15 These two different accounts of the economic practices of Jews in Europe illuminate the spectrum of the discussion in the field of Jewish economic history. Recent scholarship has underlined the importance of trust for carrying out business.16 Everyone involved in economic activities takes a risk: promises can be broken, bills of exchange can be invalid, the acquired goods can be inadequate or services cannot be carried out. Problems can particularly arise in business relationships over long distances, because advance payments have to be made and in many cases, the people involved do not personally know each other.17 Therefore, trust is especially relevant in long distance trade – and this was even more so the case in nineteenth-century Eastern Europe. One way to institutionalize trust in the economic sector is the establishment of trade networks.18 On an abstract level, networks consist of knots and links 11 Gebhard, J., “Elitenbildung in multiethnischer Spannungslage. Die Unternehmer Lub­ lins im 19.  und frühen 20.  Jahrhundert”, in: J. Gebhard/R. Lindner/P. Pietrow-Ennker (ed.): Unternehmer im Russischen Reich. Sozialprofil, Symbolwelten, Integrationsstrategien im 19. und frühen 20. Jahrhundert (Osnabrück, 2006), 179–212. 12 Kahan, A., Essays in Jewish Social and Economic History, (Chicago/London, 1986), 11. 13 Kahan, A., Essays, 12. 14 Kahan, A., Essays, 11. 15 Trivellato, F., The Familiarity of Strangers: The Sephardic Diaspora, Livorno, and CrossCultural Trade in the Early Modern Period (New Haven, 2009). 16 Frevert, U. (ed.), Vertrauen: Historische Annährungen (Göttingen, 2003); Luhmann, N., Vertrauen: Ein Mechanismus der Reduktion sozialer Komplexität (Stuttgart, 1968). 17 Saldern, A. von, Netzwerkökonomie im frühen 19. Jahrhundert: Das Beispiel der SchoellerHäuser (Stuttgart, 2009), 100. 18 The following argument relates to Saldern, A. von, Netzwerkökonomie, and Boyer, C., “Netzwerk und Geschichte: Netzwerktheorien und Geschichtswissenschaften”, in B. Unfried (ed.), Transnationale Netzwerke im 20. Jahrhundert: Historische Erkundungen zu Ideen und Praktiken, Individuen und Organisationen= Transnational networks in the 20th century [43. Linzer Konferenz der International Conference of Labour and Social History, 13.–16. September 2007 und Internationale wissenschaftliche Tagung: Transnationale Netzwerke, Beiträge zur Geschichte der Globalisierung, Wien 16.–18. November 2007] (Leipzig, 2008), 47–58.

On Religion and Economy 91

that can be structured hierarchically or flatly. By connecting business activities and social relations, networks enable trade partners “to conduct exchange activities without having to accept the uncertainties and risks of the market”.19 Thus, trust can be institutionalized by establishing a trade network. The establishment of trade networks can be connected to the concept transaction cost, which are business expenses not generated by the production process. They can be generated both before and after an economic transaction, and include areas like obtaining information, opening up new markets, or the enforcement of outstanding claims. By including the analysis of transaction costs, the network theory can be transformed from  a purely descriptive tool to  a model capable of explaining empirical findings by considering other possible strategies. Thus  a “space of potentiality”20 opens up, which illustrates the need to explain the reasons why certain practices persisted. For these kinds of explanations the “ex anteassessments”21 of the actors are much more important than the researcher’s “ex post-evaluation”22. By employing this method, the inner logic of the particular business decision can be reconstructed from the point of view of the acting trader. Moreover, the question of the importance of religious factors for the development of networks arises. Christoph Boyer emphasizes that the ­“specific quality of links [within  a network] is pre-structured”.23 This means that “a shared moral framework like it is offered by religion can lead to a specifically dense network among like-minded people”.24 By concentrating on the documents of a single Jewish manufacturer, I use a micro-history approach. Carlo Ginzburg has emphasized the necessity of putting individual actions into context in order to understand whether these were common or can be considered as a deviation.25 Only by combining the micro and macro levels is it possible to detect and interpret the “normal exception”,26 as Edoardo Grendi aptly put it. Therefore, following the general remarks in the introductory section, it is now import to provide the context of Silberstein’s business practices.

19 Weyer, J., “Zum Stand der Netzwerkforschung in den Sozialwissenschaften”, in J. Weyer (ed.), Soziale Netzwerke: Konzepte und Methoden der sozialwissenschaftlichen Netzwerk­ forschung (München, 2011), 36–59, on p. 46. 20 Boyer 2008, “Netzwerk und Geschichte”, 54 (author’s emphasis). 21 Boyer 2008, “Netzwerk und Geschichte”, 54. 22 Boyer 2008, “Netzwerk und Geschichte”, 54. 23 Boyer 2008, “Netzwerk und Geschichte”, 55. 24 Saldern, A. von, Netzwerkökonomie, 13. 25 See Ginzburg, C., Faden und Fährten: Wahr falsch fiktiv (Berlin, 2013), particularly 89–112. 26 Ginzburg, C., Faden und Fährten, 110.

92  David Schick

Legal and social discrimination against the Jews in Russia and Congress Poland In the course of the Partitions of Poland in 1772, 1793 and 1795 the Russian Empire incorporated more than 550,000 Jewish subjects. From the beginning, the policies of the Tsarist governments towards the Jews were deeply ambivalent. In some periods, the assimilation of the Jewish population was the goal of state policy in other periods the separation of the Jews from other groups of the ­population was pursued. This resulted in an abolition of the autonomous bodies of the Jewish communities in the Russian Empire on the one side and widespread legislative and societal discrimination on the other side. This way Jewish life in the Russian Empire can be described as combining the “worst of both worlds”27. Neither did the Jews receive equal rights as individuals nor did they keep the status of corporation in the sense of a pre-modern society. The Pale of Settlement to which most Jews were confined until 1917 and the limitations concerning acquiring real estate had the strongest negative effect on the economic life of the Jewish population in the Russian Empire. In the course of the nineteenth century, reforms and counter-reforms regarding the legislation concerning the Jewish population were carried out; however, the discrimination against the Jews in Russian society remained a strong factor that has to be taken into account in analyzing Jewish trade networks.28 The same applies to the part of Poland that was annexed by the Russian Empire. Although in Congress Poland (as it was called from 1815 until 1863), the legal discrimination of the Jewish population was officially abolished in 1864 a “tradition of exclusion”29 towards the Jews in Poland continued.

Łódź in the Nineteenth Century The locality of Łódź changed tremendously in the course of the nineteenth century. Starting as a small town, it became the center of textile production in the Kingdom of Poland. The onset of this development was marked by an administrative act: in the process of reshaping the economic structure of Congress

27 Shaw, P. W., The Odessa Jewish Community, 1855–1900: An Institutional History. Thesis Submitted for the Degree “Doctor of Philosophy” (Jerusalem, 1988), 31. 28 Kahan, A., Essays, 1 and 34–43. 29 Hildermeier, M., “Die rechtliche Lage der jüdischen Bevölkerung im Zarenreich und in Polen: Einige vergleichende Aspekte”, in: G. Rhode (ed.): Juden in Ostmitteleuropa von der Emanzipation bis zum Ersten Weltkrieg (Marburg/Lahn, 1989), 181–195, on p. 190.

On Religion and Economy 93

Poland, the local government decided in 1820 that the village 120 kilometers southeast of Warsaw should become an industrial city because of its natural water supply and its good transport connections.30 An overview of the development of the number of inhabitants illustrates the rapid growth of Łódź prior to World War I:31 Year

Number of inhabitants

1820

767

1828

4909

1840

15,500

1900

283,206

1914

477,862

A completely new local society came into existence. It was founded by foreign artisans and entrepreneurs, recruited in the 1820s in order to establish a textile industry in the Kingdom of Poland.32 They created the basis for the mechanized textile production in Łódź: These foreigners were extremely successful, resulting in Łódź producing 70.3 percent of the total value of textile manufacturing in Congress Poland.33 The textile industry of Russia and Poland was supported by protective tariffs that made importing finished textile goods like clothing into the Tsarist Empire nearly impossible.34 As a result large quantities of yarn and raw cotton were imported into the Russian Empire and used for the production of domestic textile products.35 Nevertheless, it is not sufficient to simply point to the growth of the population of Łódź; its demographics also have to be analyzed. The following table illustrates the ethnic composition of the city between 1820 and 1915:

30 Puś, W., “The Development of the City of Łódź”, in A. Polonsky (ed.), Jews in Łódź (Oxford, 1991), 3–19, on p. 4. 31 Pietrow-Ennker, B., “Wirtschaftsbürger und Bürgerlichkeit im Königreich Polen: das Beispiel von Lodz, dem ‘Manchester des Ostens’”, Geschichte und Gesellschaft 31:2 (2005), 169–202, on p. 175. 32 Pytlas, S., “The National Composition of Łódź Industrialists before 1914”, in A. Polonsky (ed.), Jews in Łódź (Oxford, 1991), 37–56, on p. 38. 33 Puś, W., “The Development of the City of Łódź”, 9. 34 Fuchs, E., Die polnische Textil-Industrie (ihre Entwicklung von 1816–1927) (Köln, 1928), 48. 35 Ellison, T., The Cotton Trade of Great Britain (London, 1968), 152.

94  David Schick Year

Poles (%)

Jews (%)

Germans (%)

1820

66

34

183136

17

9

74

1839

13.2

9.1

77.7

1865

34.4

21.1

44.5

1897

46.4

29.4

21.4

1915

51.4

36.4

7

37



Initially, mostly Germans and some Jews moved to the city. This trend was reversed in the middle of the nineteenth century, following the abolition of corvée in the Kingdom of Poland in 1864. From that point on, more and more Poles migrated to Łódź in order to work in the city’s textile factories.3637 Despite the ethnic composition of Łódź changing considerably in the course of the nineteenth century, the social structure of the city remained more or less stable: the German inhabitants constituted the bulk of the city’s industrial bourgeoisie and the skilled workers in the factories, the Germans therefore were socially better off than most of the other residents. Almost all Polish residents were from rural areas and worked in the textile factories. The majority of the Jews of Łódź were craftsmen working at home in the context of the putting-out system,38 and retail dealers. Furthermore, some Jewish manufacturers managed to ascend to the ranks of the upper classes, unlike Polish entrepreneurs.39 On the political and administrative levels, Łódź was subject to the same restrictions as every municipality in the Kingdom of Poland.40 Although Łódź became the county seat in 1841 when municipal authorities were established, a city council only existed from 1861 to 1869. However, even in this short period the power of the local self-administration was very limited. This fact is of crucial importance for the non-emergence of a shared political space of all inhabitants of Łódź: the case of Odessa shows the central significance of bodies such as the 36 The figures for the years 1820 and 1831 according to Puś, W., “The Development of the City of Łódź”, 7. 37 The figures for all other years: Pietrow-Ennker, B., “Wirtschaftsbürger und Bürger­ lichkeit”, 175. 38 On the putting-out system in Bavaria: Bettger, R., “Verlagswesen, Handwerk und Heim­arbeit”, in C. Grimm (ed.), Aufbruch ins Industriezeitalter 2: Aufsätze zur Wirtschaftsund Sozialgeschichte Bayerns 1750–1850 (München, 1985), 175–183. 39 Pytlas, S., “The National Composition”, 37. 40 Pietrow-Ennker, B., “Wirtschaftsbürger und Bürgerlichkeit”, 177.

On Religion and Economy 95

city council for the formation of supra-ethnic communities. It took until the revolution of 1905 for inter-ethnic collaboration to come into being, when the German and the Polish labor movements formed an alliance.41 Previously, cooperation among the different ethnics groups was limited on an institutional level to charitable and economic associations.42

Markus Silberstein Markus Silberstein was born in the small town of Praszka (120 kilometers southwest of Łódź) in 1833 and began working as an accountant when he was 22 years old.43 After the emancipation of the Jews in the Kingdom of Poland he became involved in the textile trade. Based on business skills and lucky circumstances he acquired considerable wealth.44 At the beginning of his successful career, he received a large dowry as seed capital through marrying the daughter of  a merchant from Warsaw in 1865.45 In 1878, he opened  a branch office in the suburb of Pabianice and began producing textile products in his weaving mill. Some years later in 1891 he established a spinning mill and produced his own yarn. The following year, the company was transformed into a joint stock company,46 which points to its financial success. Both as  a textile merchant and as  a manufacturer Silberstein supplied major clients as well as small consumers. Markus Silberstein was active in a number of predominately Jewish charitable organizations. Until his death in 1899 he was involved in the Jewish life of the city in many different ways and acted as an advocate for his fellow Jews. This can be illustrated by an incident from 1897: by that time Silberstein was a member of a syndicate working to build a tram system in Łódź. But when the majority of the syndicate decided only to hire Christians as employees of the future enterprise, Silberstein and three other Jewish entrepreneurs resigned in protest.47

41 Guesnet, F., Lodzer Juden im 19. Jahrhundert: Ihr Ort in einer multikulturellen Gesellschaft (Baalsdorf 1997), 6. 42 See Pietrow-Ennker, B., “Wirtschaftsbürger und Bürgerlichkeit”. 43 Kempa, A./Szukalak, M., Żyzi dawnej łodzi. Słownik biograficzny. Żydów łódzkicj oraz z łodzią związanych, 4 Volumes (Łódź, 2001), 140. 44 Pietrow-Ennker, B., “Wirtschaftsbürger und Bürgerlichkeit”, 176. 45 Kempa, A./Szukalak, M., Żyzi dawnej łodzi. 140. 46 Archiwum Państwowe w Łodzi 1866–1944, n.p. 47 Guesnet, F., Lodzer Juden im 19. Jahrhundert, 21.

96  David Schick

Silberstein’s business network A number of business records from the Silberstein company activities in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries were preserved in the Archiwum Państwowe w Łodzi (APL). The journals (1873–1915)48 and one balance sheet (1880–1887)49 are especially relevant for this article. In the journals one can find a large number of separate transactions arranged in monthly divisions. Like the balance sheet, they shed light on the individual business contacts of the textile factory, provide information about the volume and the duration of the business contact, and show whether the trade partners were suppliers or consumers. The following empirical analysis of the distribution of religious affiliations among the business partners of the Silberstein company covers the years 1874/187550 and 1880 to 1882.51 I introduced one central feature into my analysis: the distinction between business contacts in medium and close range (defined as the area within a 200 km radius) and long-distance trading. According to the business model of Silberstein’s company this distinction was reflected in a division between suppliers and customers: in the long-distance trade, raw cotton, yarn, and machinery was purchased; until 1878, textile goods were resold but afterwards Silberstein started to produce finished textile products himself, and sold all of these in close proximity. Since the religious affiliation of the business partners of Silberstein is not mentioned in the business records, I reconstructed it by using additional information. I primarily used two databases in this regard: first, a digital index of the personal data of those buried in Jewish graveyards in Europe,52 and second, a list of Holocaust victims complied by Yad Vashem.53 While it was possible to identify individual business partners based on the first database, the second one pointed to Jewish families living in a particular town. Because the data in the source material is not complete, the trade in the medium and close range areas could only be analyzed for the period from 1880 to 1882, while the analysis of long-distance trade also includes the years 1874/1875. My results for the religious distribution of the business partners of Markus Silberstein in the long-distance trade are as follows: 48 Społki Akcyjnej Wyrobow wełnianych i bawełnianych M. Silberstein w Łodzi 1873– 1899, Społki Akcyjnej Wyrobow wełnianych i bawełnianych M. Silberstein w Łodzi 1892–1899, Społki Akcyjnej Wyrobow wełnianych i bawełnianych M. Silberstein w Łodzi 1899–1915. 49 Społki Akcyjnej Wyrobow wełnianych i bawełnianych M. Silberstein w Łodzi 1880–1887. 50 The data can be found in the balance sheet Społki Akcyjnej Wyrobow wełnianych i bawełnianych M. Silberstein w Łodzi 1873–1899. 51 The data can be found in the balance sheet Społki Akcyjnej Wyrobow wełnianych i bawełnianych M. Silberstein w Łodzi 1880–1887. 52 http://www.jewishgen.org/databases/Cemetery/ (last retrieved on 04/24/2014). 53 http://db.yadvashem.org/names/search.html?language=en (last retrieved on 04/24/2014).

On Religion and Economy 97 Year

Total business contacts

Jewish business partners

Jewish business ­partners as percentage of total

1874

34

10

29.4

1875

37

10

27

1880

98

22

22.5

1881

89

22

24.7

1882

65

24

36.9

As the table shows Jewish business partners constitute only a minority of the ­Silberstein company’s long-distance trade relationships. Its business activities extended well into Western Europe, where the firm conducted business with companies in Germany, France, England, and Northern Ireland. The small number of Jewish business partners in these long-distance trade relations might create the impression that Arcadius Kahan’s concept of a vertical integration of Jewish businessmen is not supported by my empirical analysis. However, it is necessary to look at the results in more detail: if the data is interpreted not with regard to the quantity of Jewish business partners, but the quality of the business relationship is included into the analysis, the initial impression of the minor role of Jewish merchants changes completely. It turns out that the most important business partners in the long-distance trade were exclusively Jews. Especially important were Silberstein’s trade relations with cotton dealers in Manchester, who supplied him with raw cotton and yarn. These goods were central for the operation of his factory and had therefore to be supplied by trade partners Silberstein could trust. This trust can also be seen in the high stability of his trade relationships with other Jews, which lasted for years, while he did not order goods more than once or twice from his Christian business partners. With respect to the data concerning the trade relations in the 200 km radius around Łódź, the religious distribution of the business partners of Silberstein’s company was as follows: Year

Total business contacts

Jewish business partners

Jewish business ­partners as percentage of total

1880

314

161

51

1881

354

203

57

1882

393

246

62.5

98  David Schick Thus, the share of Jewish business partners in the near range was considerably higher than in the long-distance trade and was constantly increasing. Never­ theless, here, too, it is necessary to look at the results more closely. Many of ­Silberstein’s Jewish customers only acquired goods in small or very small quantities. They only bought raw cotton, yarn, and clothing for a small amount of money at the company’s warehouse in Ulica Piotrkowska 40 or in the branch at Pabianice. As a group they were highly relevant for the economic success of the enterprise, but Silberstein’s most important individual customer was the German textile entrepreneur Rudolf Kindler, whom Silberstein supplied with large quantities of yarn and raw cotton for years. Additionally, Silberstein’s second-largest individual customer locally was another German manufacturer named Robert Biedermann. The widespread discrimination against the Jews obviously did not keep Silberstein from maintaining intensive business relations with non-Jews. Similar to the analysis of the long-distance trade relations, the initial impression provided by the data is reversed when the qualitative approach is used for the analysis. After performing this second step of the empirical analysis, it seems likely that, locally, Silberstein was not part of a Jewish ­business network.

Interpretation of the results The results of the empirical analysis of Silberstein’s business contacts raises one crucial question. How can it be explained that Silberstein was only involved in  a Jewish trade-network in long-distance trade, while he participated in  a ­supra-ethnic network on the local level? I will try to answer this question by pointing to Silberstein’s supply chain and by trying to reconstruct the inner logic of Silberstein’s decisions by contrasting them with the business behavior of other Łódź textile manufacturers. While Silberstein was buying raw cotton and yarn in the 1870s from two Jewish merchants, he diversified his suppliers in the English industrial city in the 1880s. At this point, he was conducting business with seven different trading houses in Manchester, however six of them were owned by Jews. This is a conspicuous fact, because Jewish traders – while constituting an important group among the merchants of the city – did not possess a monopoly.54 Even more anomalies surface if we look at the structure of Silberstein’s business network in comparison with other textile manufacturers from Łódź. If put 54 Chapman points to the fact that already in 1870 Greek traders constituted the biggest group among the foreign merchants of Manchester. Furthermore, a number of other minorities were active in the textile trade of the industrial city, see Chapman, S., Merchant Enterprise in Britain: From the Industrial Revolution to World War I (Cambridge, 1992), 157, 166.

On Religion and Economy 99

into the context of the supply chains of other textile entrepreneurs, it is not the large share of Jewish business partners in Manchester that is the main deviation, but the fact that he was buying raw cotton and yarn from Manchester at all. The center for purchasing these goods in England was Liverpool; in Manchester, almost exclusively finished cotton products were distributed.55 Ac­cordingly, if textile manufacturers from Łódź did not buy their commodities directly in the growing areas (i. e., the United States or India), they ordered their raw cotton from Liverpool.56 However, virtually no Jewish textile traders were active in the English port city.57 This deviation of Silberstein’s business conduct from the behavior of his Christian competitors is of central importance. Obviously, Silberstein’s “ex ante-assessments” were structured by considerations different from theirs. Even though Silberstein’s business correspondence was not preserved, in my opinion, his decision to choose Manchester as the source of supply for raw cotton points to the fact that religious or ethnic considerations played a role in the development of his long-distance trade network. In Liverpool, he would have not been able to conduct business with Jewish merchants. Only a higher trust in Jewish merchants could explain why Silberstein took upon himself the economically illogical costs of purchasing raw cotton from Manchester. His “space of potentiality” seems to have been delineated by distinctive features. It seems highly likely therefore that the reduction of economic risks was, for Silberstein, connected to the religious affiliation of his business partners. If this was the case why was Silberstein not also a member of a Jewish trade network on the local level? Was it based on personal contacts and therefore included Jews and non-Jews alike? At this point, it makes sense to look at local institutions that dealt with business disputes. With regard to the high number of small customers, it could have been quite important that the reliability of both parties involved was safeguarded by the social control within the Jewish community. Besides, Jewish religious courts still seemed to be important for settling business disputes in the nineteenth century.58 Because of Silberstein’s involvement in the Jewish institutions of Łódź, it seems plausible that he was ­receptive to conflict regulation within the Jewish community. 55 Chapman, S., Merchant Enterprise in Britain, 76. 56 Schweikert, K., Die Baumwoll-Industrie Russisch-Polens: Ihre Entwicklung zum Grossbetrieb und die Lage der Arbeiter (Zürich/Leipzig, 1913), 181, 232. 57 Pollins, H., Economic History of the Jews in England (Rutherford, 1982), 95. 58 Guesnet, F., Lodzer Juden im 19. Jahrhundert, 11. Additionally, Israel J. Singer writes in his novel The Brothers Ashkenazi, first published in 1935: “In the growing city of Lodz, with its ceaseless business activity, the rabbis did well. They were not only religious leaders; they were likewise the lawyers and courts of justice. Jewish business-men went to them for advice, for the settlement of disputes, the drawing up of partnerships, and even to deposit money in escrow.” see Singer, I. J., The Brothers Ashkenazi (New York, 1936), 85.

100  David Schick But which institutions were important as safeguards of trust when Silberstein dealt with gentiles? The state-run jurisdiction was very inefficient and rarely used to settle disputes.59 Rather, institutions of the Łódź merchants such as the Merchants’ Society established in 1850 provided a way to resolve conflicts. In the local area, it is therefore possible to show that religious and non-religious institutions safeguarded trust and legal certainty. In long-distance trade, it would have been nearly impossible to enforce claims without creating high costs. Therefore, trust and reliability were much more important  – and ­Silberstein generated them through favoring business partners with  a common religious background. In this article, I tried to explore the relationship between economic and religious factors based on an empirical analysis. By reconstructing the network of a Jewish textile manufacturer and by trying to understand the inner logic of its development, I was able to show that in long-distance trade, a shared religious affiliation probably led to a higher level of mutual trust. However, further micro studies regarding the question whether religious beliefs influenced economic practices have to be carried out in order to reach a broader understanding of business practices of Jewish entrepreneurs in nineteenth century Russia. For this task, other source materials such as business correspondence, memoirs or ego documents may also be taken into account.

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On Religion and Economy 101 Durkheim, E., Die elementaren Formen des religiösen Lebens – Unter Mitarbeit von Ludwig Schmidts (Frankfurt am Main, 1994). Eisenstadt, S. N. (ed.), The Protestant Ethic and Modernization (New York, 1968). Ellison, T., The Cotton Trade of Great Britain (London, 1968). Frevert, U. (ed.), Vertrauen: Historische Annährungen (Göttingen, 2003). Fuchs, E., Die polnische Textil-Industrie (ihre Entwicklung von 1816–1927) (Köln, 1928). Gebhard, J., “Elitenbildung in multiethnischer Spannungslage. Die Unternehmer Lublins im 19. und frühen 20. Jahrhundert”, in: J. Gebhard/R. Lindner/B. Pietrow-Ennker (ed.): Unternehmer im Russischen Reich. Sozialprofil, Symbolwelten, Integrationsstrategien im 19. und frühen 20. Jahrhundert (Osnabrück, 2006), 179–212. Ginzburg, C. Faden und Fährten: Wahr falsch fiktiv (Berlin, 2013). Graf, F. W., “Beeinflussen religiöse Weltbilder den ökonomischen Habitus?” in H. Berghoff/ J. Vogel (ed.), Wirtschaftsgeschichte als Kulturgeschichte: Dimensionen eines Perspektivenwechsels (Frankfurt am Main, 2004), 241–264. Granovetter, M., “Economic Action and Social Structure: The Problem of Embeddedness”, American Journal of Sociology 19:3 (1985), 481–510. Guesnet, F., Lodzer Juden im 19. Jahrhundert: Ihr Ort in einer multikulturellen Gesellschaft, (Baalsdorf, 1997). Heike, O., Aufbau und Entwicklung der Lodzer Textilindustrie: eine Arbeit deutscher Einwanderer in Polen für Europa (Mönchengladbach, 1971). Hildermeier, M., “Die rechtliche Lage der jüdischen Bevölkerung im Zarenreich und in ­Polen: Einige vergleichende Aspekte”, in: G. Rhode (ed.): Juden in Ostmitteleuropa von der Emanzipation bis zum Ersten Weltkrieg (Marburg/Lahn, 1989). Iannaccone, L. R., “Introduction to the Economics of Religion”, Journal of Economic Literature XXXVI (1998), 1465–1496. Kahan, A., Essays in Jewish Social and Economic History (Chicago/London, 1986). Keister, L. A., Faith and money: How Religion Contributes to Wealth and Poverty (New York, 2011). Kempa, A./Szukalak, M., Żyzi dawnej łodzi. Słownik biograficzny. Żydów łódzkicj oraz z łodzią związanych, 4 Volumes (Łódź, 2001). Lestschinski, J., “Wilna, der Niedergang einer jüdischen Stadt”, Jüdische Wohlfahrtspflege und Sozialpolitik 2:1 (1931), 21–33. Lestschinsky, J., “Die Umsiedlung und Umschichtung des jüdischen Volkes im Lauf des letzten Jahrhunderts”, Weltwirtschaftliches Archiv XXX /XXXII (1929/1930), 123–156, 563–599. Luhmann, N., Vertrauen: Ein Mechanismus der Reduktion sozialer Komplexität (Stuttgart, 1968). Luhmann, N., Die Religion der Gesellschaft (Frankfurt am Main, 2002). Marx, K., “Zur Judenfrage”, Deutsch-Französische Jahrbücher 1/2 (1844), 182–214. Neusner, J., Religious Belief and Economic Behavior: Ancient Israel, Classical Christianity, ­Islam, and Judaism, and Contemporary Ireland and Africa (Atlanta, 1999). Pietrow-Ennker, B., “Wirtschaftsbürger und Bürgerlichkeit im Königreich Polen: das Beispiel von Lodz, dem ‘Manchester des Ostens’”, Geschichte und Gesellschaft 31:2 (2005), 169–202. Poettering, J., Handel, Nation und Religion: Kaufleute zwischen Hamburg und Portugal im 17. Jahrhundert (Göttingen, 2013). Pollins, H. Economic History of the Jews in England (Rutherford, 1982). Portes, A./Sensenbrenner, J. “Embeddedness and Immigration: Notes on the Social Deter­ minants of Economic Action”, American Journal of Sociology 98:6 (1993), 1320–1350. Puś, W., “The Development of the City of Łódź”. in A. Polonsky (ed.), Jews in Łódź (Oxford, 1991), 3–19. Pytlas, S., “The National Composition of Łódź Industrialists before 1914”, in A. Polonsky (ed.), Jews in Łódź (Oxford, 1991), 37–56.

102  David Schick Rakodi, C., “A framework for analysing the links between religion and development”, Development in Practice 22:5/6 (2012), 634–650. Reuveni, G./Wobick-Segev, S., The Economy in Jewish History: New Perspectives on the Interrelationship between Ethnicity and Economic Life (New York, 2011). Saldern, A. von, Netzwerkökonomie im frühen 19.  Jahrhundert: Das Beispiel der SchoellerHäuser (Stuttgart, 2009). Samuelsson, K, Religion and Economic Action: The Protestant Ethic, the Rise of Capitalism, and the Absuses of Scholarship (Toronto, 1993). Schiper, I., Onhoyb fun kapitalizm bay yuden in Mayrev-Eyrope (Warsaw, 1920). Schiper, I., Yidishe geshikhte: virtshaftsgeshikhte (Warsaw, 1930). Schiper, I., Dzieje handlu żydowskiego na ziemiach polskich (Warsaw, 1937). Schmiz, A., Transnationalität als Ressource? Netzwerke vietnamesischer Migratinnen und ­Migranten zwischen Berlin und Vietnam (Bielefeld, 2011). Schweikert, K., Die Baumwoll-Industrie Russisch-Polens: Ihre Entwicklung zum Grossbetrieb und die Lage der Arbeiter (Zürich/Leipzig, 1913). Shaw, P. W., The Odessa Jewish Community, 1855–1900: an Institutional History. Thesis submitted for the Degree “Doctor of Philosophy” (Jerusalem, 1988). Singer, I. J., The Brothers Ashkenazi (New York, 1936). Sombart, W., Die Juden und das Wirtschaftsleben (München/Leipzig, 1928) Stein, S. A., Plumes: Ostrich Feathers, Jews, and a Lost World of Global Commerce (New Haven, 2008) Toch, M., The Economic History of European Jews Late Antiquity and Early Middle Ages (Leiden, 2013). Trivellato, F., The Familiarity of Strangers: The Sphardic Diaspora, Livorno, and Cross-­Cultural Trade in the Early Modern Period (New Haven, 2009). Weber, M., Die protestantische Ethik und der Geist des Kapitalismus (Tübingen, 1920). Weinryb, B. D., Neueste Wirtschaftsgeschichte der Juden in Rußland und Polen: Von der 1. polnischen Teilung bis zum Tode Alexanders II (1772–1881) (Hildesheim/New York 2, 1972). Weyer, J., “Zum Stand der Netzwerkforschung in den Sozialwissenschaften”, in J. Weyer (ed.), Soziale Netzwerke: Konzepte und Methoden der sozialwissenschaftlichen Netzwerk­forschung (München, 2011), 39–69. Winterberg, J. M., Religion und Marktwirtschaft: Ordnungspolitische Vorstellungen im Christentum und Islam (Baden-Baden, 1994).

Archival Sources

Archiwum Państwowe w Łodzi (1866–1944): Inwentarz: Społki Akcyjnej Wyrobow wełnianych i bawełnianych M. Silberstein w Łodzi. Archiwum Państwowe w Łodzi. Społki Akcyjnej Wyrobow wełnianych i bawełnianych M. Silberstein w Łodzi (1873–1899): General-Memorial. Archiwum Państwowe w Łodzi, 117. Społki Akcyjnej Wyrobow wełnianych i bawełnianych M. Silberstein w Łodzi (1880–1887): Saldo-Bilanz. Archiwum Państwowe w Łodzi, 11. Społki Akcyjnej Wyrobow wełnianych i bawełnianych M. Silberstein w Łodzi (1892–1899): Memorial. Archiwum Państwowe w Łodzi, 118. Społki Akcyjnej Wyrobow wełnianych i bawełnianych M. Silberstein w Łodzi (1899–1915): Memorial. Archiwum Państwowe w Łodzi, 119.

David E. Fishman

Yiddish and the Formation of a Secular Jewish National Identity in Tsarist Russia

This paper is about the changing position of the Yiddish language among Russian Jews in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries: its use, its functions, the social base of modern Yiddish culture, and the symbolic meaning of Yiddish culture in the evolving identity of Russian Jews.1

Yiddish and the 1897 Russian Census According to the 1897 Russian census, there were 5,280,000 Jews by religion in Imperial Russia. (The census recorded subjects’ religion, not their nationality or ethnicity.) Of them, 97 percent declared “Jewish” to be their mother tongue (rodnoi iazik).2 This statistic is frequently cited to demonstrate the strength of Yiddish in Russian Jewry, and it is sometimes abused to conclude that Russian Jewry was an entirely Yiddish-speaking entity. But this number needs to be put into its proper proportions and context. First, a few quibbles. The number of 5.28 million included about 65,000 nonAshkenazi Jews in the Caucasus and Central Asia. It is clear that when they declared “Jewish” as their mother tongue, they had in mind languages other than Yiddish. Second, in 1897, Jewish nationalist sentiments and ideas were quite strong and widespread, and one may assume that there were thousands of Russian-speaking Jews who declared “Jewish” as their mother tongue, not as a statement of fact, but as a demonstrative act, to affirm their Jewish nationality before the tsarist government. This is known to have happened in censuses in the Austro-Hungarian Empire.3 But the bigger problem with the figure of 97 percent of Jews declaring Yiddish their mother tongue has to do with the meaning of the term rodnoi iazik. While each respondent was free to understand the term as he or she wished, the 1 My book The Rise of Modern Yiddish Culture (published by Pittsburgh University Press in 2005), provides a fuller treatment of these issues. 2 The figure is widely cited. See Schwartz, S., The Jews of the Soviet Union (Syracuse, 1951), 12–13. 3 See the entry “Rossiia: demografiia evreiskogo naseleniia rossiisskoi imperii 1772–1917”, in Y. Oren et al (ed.), Kratkaia evreiskaia entsiklopediia,7 (Jerusalem, 1996), 388–390.

104  David E. Fishman conventional understanding of the phrase was the language in which one was raised as a child, not necessarily one’s current primary language. In a dynamically changing social group such as Russian Jewry, this was a major difference. For Jews, the census question regarding mother tongue was a historical one – what was the primary language you heard and spoke as a child 30, 50 or 70 years ago? That Jewish respondents actually understood the term rodnoi iazik to mean childhood native tongue, is demonstrated by the census data itself. About 25,000 inhabitants of the Russian Empire who declared themselves to be Christians by religion simultaneously declared “Jewish”, presumably Yiddish, as their mother tongue. These respondents were Jewish converts to Christianity who had grown up hearing and speaking Yiddish at home.4 In short, this figure of 97 percent claiming Yiddish as their mother tongue tells us less about the actual language situation of Russian Jewry in 1897 than meets the eye. But it is complemented by another figure, which is less cited but more revelatory: 26 percent of the Jews by religion declared that they were literate in Russian. This figure can be varyingly interpreted as high or low. High, because only twenty percent of Russian Orthodox respondents to the census claimed to be literate in Russian. Paradoxically, the Jewish literacy rate in Russian was higher than that of ethnic Russians! But the comparison between Jewish and Russian Orthodox respondents is sociologically false. The Jews were not peasants who had been enserfed for centuries, as were the vast majority of Russians. Jews were overwhelmingly an urban or semi-urban group with a strong indigenous tradition of education and literacy. If compared to the Russian literacy of other inhabitants in imperial cities and towns, the Jews’ literacy in Russian would be quite low. Another comparison is with Jews in other European states. Compared to the Jews of Germany or France, the figure of 26 percent Russian-language literacy was exceedingly low. If we had figures for the literacy of German Jews in German, or of French Jews in French, in 1897, the figure would be over 90 percent. The proportion of Habsburg Jews with literacy in German must also have been over 50 percent. The 26 percent figure indicates the comparatively low level of Jews’ cultural integration into Russian life.5 In fact, I would suggest that we use this figure as a baseline for measuring the strength of Yiddish in 1897. 74 percent of the Ashkenazi Jews in Russia, or 3,792,500 Jews, were not literate in Russian, and the language that they knew best, and spoke with family and friends, was Yiddish. This population of almost four million for whom Yiddish was their primary language was the target audi 4 Goldberg, B. “o rodnom iazike evreev v rossii,” Evreiskaia zhizn’, col. 2, no. 4 (April 1905), 70–80. 5 But there was variation among Jewish social groups. See Estraikh, G., “Languages of Yehupets Students”, East European Jewish Affairs, 22:1 (1992), 63–71.

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ence for modern Yiddish theatre, literature, and press at the turn of the twentieth century. Of course, not all of the 74 percent for whom Yiddish was their primary language were literate in Yiddish and could read a Yiddish newspaper or book. Many rural Jews and some shtetl (small-town) Jews were functionally illiterate. But then again, a good proportion of the 26 percent of Jews who were literate in Russian were also fluent and literate in Yiddish. These two factors offset each other. That is why I will argue that the target audience of modern Yiddish culture in Russia at the turn of the twentieth century – those were potential readers of Yiddish literature and press and potential visitors of the Yiddish theatre – numbered four million people.

Changes in Scale and Character While Yiddish had been a feature of Ashkenazi Jewish life for centuries, the scope of Yiddish cultural output, and the size of the audience that consumed it, exploded in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries in Russia. Two figures demonstrate this point. In 1888, Sholem Aleichem compiled a list of all Yiddish books printed in the Russian Empire – it listed 78 titles. 24 years later, in 1912, the scholar Moshe Shalit compiled an analogous list – and came up with 407 titles, i. e., five times as many books.6 Granted, the methodology of the later list was much more reliable; Sholem Aleichem did not count every single prayer book and Bible with Yiddish translation, whereas Shalit did. But even if we double Sholem Aleichem’s figure of 78 books, the increase in the publication of Yiddish books and booklets between 1888 and 1912 was nothing short of extraordinary. The same applied to readership and circulation: in the 1880s, the circulation of the only Yiddish newspaper in the entire Russian Empire, the St. Petersburgbased weekly Yidishes Folksblat, was 7,000 copies (according to the paper’s own editor). In 1912, the combined circulation of the two most popular Yiddish dailies in Russia, the Warsaw-based Haynt and Moment, was 175,000. The combined circulation of all Yiddish newspapers and magazines in the Russian Empire in that year would have surpassed 300,000. In other words, between the 1880s and 1912, the circulation of Yiddish periodicals increased by more than 40 times.7 6 Solomon Esbikher (Sholem Aleichem), “a regester iber ale zhargonishe vertk vos zenen opgedrukt gevorn inem yor 5648 [1887–8]”, Di yidishe folkbibliotek 1 (Kiev, 1888), 469–473; Shalit, M., “Statistik fun yidishn bikhermark in yor 1912” in S. Niger (ed.), Der Pinkes: Yorbukh far der geshikhte fun der yidisher literature un shprakh, folklore, kritik, un bibkliografye (Vil’na, 1913), 277–306. 7 Folksblat figure from Zitron, S. L., Geshikhte fun der yidisher prese (Warsaw, 1925), 132; Haynt and Moment circulation: Rejzen, Z., Leksikon fun der yidisher literatur un prese, (Warsaw, 1914), 679, 711.

106  David E. Fishman In this period, between the 1880s and 1912, the characteristics of Yiddish cultural output also changed dramatically. I will cite just two examples. Y­iddish theatre first appeared in Russia, in Odessa, in 1877. Before then, the only Yiddish theatre that existed was the performance of plays on or around the holiday of Purim. But the repertoire of purim-shpiln (Purim plays) was limited to a few Biblical stories (the book of Esther, the story of Joseph), and the theatre “season” was limited to one day, or at most, one week, per year. Needless to say, there were no acting or playwriting professions. Jews were the last group in Eastern Europe to develop their own theatre culture. But by 1912, tens of thousands of Jews flocked to Yiddish theatres in Warsaw and Odessa, and to the visiting performances in other cities and towns. Yiddish theatre – with its operettas, melodramas, comedies, and serious dramas – became the most popular organized leisure activity among Russian Jews, much to the chagrin of rabbis who condemned their allegedly frivolous and vulgar content, and the public mingling of men and women.8 A second datum indicates the qualitative shift in Yiddish cultural output: Shalit’s bibliography of Yiddish books in 1912 noted that twenty percent of the books and booklets published in that year were in the categories of political literature, popular science, and education. Clearly, Yiddish writing was dealing with subjects and writing in genres that were virtually unknown to readers a generation earlier. Finally, the status of Yiddish changed dramatically in the eyes of the RussianJewish intelligentsia between the 1880s and 1912. If beforehand, it was widely disparaged as “jargon”, it now was regarded by most modern Jewish intellectuals as a legitimate literary and cultural vehicle.9

The Socio-Cultural Breakdown of Russian Jewry Contemporaneous observers of the Yiddish renaissance, and most subsequent scholars, have focused on the changes in the status of the language, and in the genres and artistic level of Yiddish writing, but not on the explosion of Yiddish cultural production and consumption. I would like to argue that the quantitative explosion, and the revolution in status and genres, need to be seen together, as interrelated, or as part of a larger phenomenon. I would like to draw attention to the sociological basis for this Yiddish cultural explosion, and then discuss how it related to the transformation of Jewish self-understanding and identification.



8 See Sandrow, N., Vagabond Stars: A World History of Yiddish Theatre (Syracuse, 1996). 9 I explore the change in status in depth in The Rise of Modern Yiddish Culture.

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When we speak of the cultural life of Russian Jews at the turn of the twentieth century, it is useful to consider them as falling into three distinct, although overlapping communities: the Jews who lived in the countryside and small towns (shtetlekh); the Jews who lived in the cities of the Pale of Settlement and Congress Poland, cities being defined as places with a total population of 10,000 or more; and the Jews who lived outside the Pale of Settlement, mainly in St. Petersburg, Moscow, and Kiev. According to the 1897 census, 51 percent of the Jews in Russia lived in the countryside and in towns, 43 percent lived in cities within the confines of the Pale of Settlement and Congress Poland, and six percent of Jews lived outside the Pale.10 These three Jewries lived in different social and cultural worlds. Of course there were overlaps between them (many Jewish intelligenty obtained their higher education degrees in St. Petersburg or Kiev, and then settled in Vilna or Kishinev), and there were regional and local particularities. But I think this three-part division is the most useful analytic device. I would like to argue that the second group, the Jews of the cities in the Pale and Poland, formed the key to the explosion of modern Yiddish culture. The shtetlekh, the small towns, were, relatively-speaking, still the bastions of traditional Jewish life, less so than a generation earlier, but much more so than the cities of the Pale, let alone the cities outside the Pale. In most such towns, Jews constituted the majority of the local population, and the surrounding inhabitants consisted of Polish, Ukrainian, or other peasants. There was no incentive or need for a Jew to acquire Russian literacy. The Jewish community was a Yiddish-speaking milieu. But despite the dominance of Yiddish among shtetl inhabitants, they were not particularly interested in modern Yiddish culture in the 1880s and 1890s. Social and cultural life in the shtetlekh revolved around synagogues, houses of study, and khevres (religious associations). For most inhabitants, leisure activities consisted of going to daily prayers, listening to a maggid (preacher), or, for women, reading the Tzena u-reenah, (a commentary on select portions of the Pentateuch) reciting tekhines (women’s prayer), and just meeting in groups to tell stories or sing songs. There were strong social pressures to adhere, at least in public, to religious norms. In shtetlekh, it was still a public scandal around 1900 if someone walked down the street on the Sabbath smoking a cigarette or carrying a walking stick. Modern movements had to adjust to traditional forms, and present themselves through traditional vehicles: Zionism penetrated mainly through one or two local synagogues, through wandering preachers, and sometimes through a school that called itself a heder metukan (reformed school).11 10 See Leshchinsky, Y., Dos yidishe folk in tsifern (Berlin, 1922). 11 See Petrovsky-Shtern, Y., The Golden Age Shtetl: A New History of Jewish Life in ­Eastern Europe (Princeton, 2014); Klausner, I., Mi-Katovitz ad Bazel, 2 vols. (Jerusalem, 1965).

108  David E. Fishman While the Jews of the shtetlekh spoke Yiddish, only a small minority of them were active partakers of modern Yiddish culture. Most shtetl inhabitants around the year 1900 saw a Yiddish theatre performance only on the rare occasion an ensemble stopped by their town. Very few of them read a Yiddish newspaper, and the rest got their information about current events and politics secondhand, from the few who did. The psychological and cultural distance between the shtetl and the city was large. That is why S. An-ski referred to the towns of the Pale of Settle­ment as the “Jewish dark continent”, and launched his ethnographic expeditions to collect shtetl culture.12 On the other end of the spectrum were the Jews of St. Petersburg and Moscow. In those cities, Jews were a small minority of the population. (In St. Petersburg Jews were two percent of the city’s inhabitants.) The Jews who had the right to live outside the Pale were, by definition, either wealthy or graduates of Russian high-schools and universities. St. Petersburg and Moscow were centers of high Russian culture, with universities, operas, theatres, Russian newspapers and magazines, and the Jews who lived there were nearly all literate in Russian and partook in Russian culture. While there were some Orthodox Jews in these cities, they were a small minority of the Jewish population. Zionism was also a minority phenomenon, and those who identified as Zionists usually saw it as a philanthropic “cause” (to offer financial support to the colonies in the Land of Israel) rather than  a political ideology. While modern Yiddish culture made some inroads into St. Petersburg in the early twentieth century, the city was on the periphery of the Yiddish cultural phenomenon.13

Yiddish Culture and the Cities of the Pale of Settlement/Congress Poland The cities of the Pale of Settlement and Congress Poland were the centers of Yiddish cultural production and, even more so, of Yiddish cultural consumption. The rapid growth of the Jewish urban population is one of the central developments of late nineteenth century Russian Jewry. The Jewish population of Odessa grew from 17,000 in 1855 to 152,000 in 1910; the Jewish population of Warsaw grew from 41,000 in 1856 to 277,000 in 1908; the Jewish population of Vilna grew from 23,000 to 72,000 between 1847 and 1910, and of Kishinev from 10,000 to 60,000 in the same time span.14 This growth was the product of 12 See Deutsch, N., The Jewish Dark Continent: Life and Death in the Russian Pale of Settle­ment, (Cambridge, 2011). 13 On St. Petersburg, see Nathans, B., Beyond the Pale: The Jewish Encounter with Late Imperial Russia, (Berkeley, 2002). 14 Leshschinsky, Y., Dos yidishe folk.

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massive Jewish migration from shtetlekh to cities within the Russian Empire. While we think of the Great Migration of East European Jewry as being the migration of 1.5 million Jews to the United States between 1881 and 1914, an equal number of Jews migrated from shtetlekh to cities within more or less the same time frame. This means that on the eve of World War I, the majority of Jewish city dwellers in the Pale of Settlement and Congress Poland were first-generation migrants from the shtetlekh. These migrants were the primary consumers of modern Yiddish culture. As migrants, these people were thrust into a radically new social and cultural milieu. In the city, Jews were a minority – a sizeable one, usually between 30 and 40 percent, but nonetheless a minority. The majority language and culture or the state language and culture were strong and visibly present in these cities – ­Polish in Warsaw, Russian in Odessa, a mixture of both in Vilna. But it was not easy for first-generation immigrants, most of whom were poor, to become fully fluent and literate in these languages. Other factors also impeded Jewish linguistic Polonization and Russification in the cities, including the quotas on Jews entering Russian higher education and local anti-Semitism among Poles. Meanwhile, the migrants adapted to and were transformed by urban life: in the absence of an integral community with strong social bonds, and in the absence of revered or feared religious authorities, secularization ensued to varying degrees. A Jewish journalist described the situation with regard to Sabbath observance in the cities of the Pale of Settlement as follows in 1909: in nearly all cities, Jewish shops were closed on the Sabbath, but most Jews did not go to synagogue. In Odessa, he reported, Jewish shops were actually open on Saturdays. A perusal of the advertisements in the Yiddish press from that period indicates that Yiddish theatres performed on Saturday afternoons not only in Warsaw, but also in Vilna. The migrants were drawn into the vortex of modern politics and ideology – nationalism, socialism, political anti-Semitism, revolution, duma elections, and so on. It is not much of an exaggeration to say that the newspaper replaced the seyfer (religious book) as the daily fare of the Jewish reader who left the shtetl for the city.15 In short, the migrants modernized at a more rapid pace than they acculturated to Russian or Polish. It is the disparity between their modernization and their acculturation that led to the explosion in the consumption of the modern Yiddish press, literature, and theatre. The migrants’ cultural needs were different from those of their parents, but they could not easily satisfy these modern needs in languages other than Yiddish.

15 See the chapter “Tsaytungen” in the memoiristic vignettes by Schneur, Z., Shklover yidn (Vilna, 1929).

110  David E. Fishman

Language and Identity In the city milieu, where religious observance waned and integral communities were absent, Yiddish itself took on a new meaning. Jews became an “imagined community” in the sense that Benedict Andersen uses the term. They felt bound together by their shared Jewish vernacular and by the vernacular press which they read each day. In the complex new world that the shtetl migrants encountered, the Yiddish newspaper became  a trusted interpreter and guide, the Yiddish theatre  a much-needed release and diversion. Language increasingly became the marker that most readily identified Jews to each other and visibly distinguished them from Poles and Russians. (This also has to do with the decline of distinctly Jewish dress in the cities.) For a growing number of Jews in the cities, Yiddish became a symbolic shorthand for their common history and culture. This new language-based identity was based on a very East European model of ethnic or national identity. It paralleled and even imitated similar trends among Poles and Ukrainians. For Poles and Ukrainians, the shared language, with its rich folklore and rising literature, were central to the national identity. The press and theatre served as the surrogate focal points of national life in the absence of political sovereignty and political institutions, and with the rise in suppression of political parties. The religion of the national group (for Poles, Roman Catholicism; for Ukrainians, Greek Catholicism) was respected, mined, and exploited for national revival, but actual religious practice was in decline among the urban populations of these groups. This paper has dealt with social factors and not with the role of intellectuals and writers in advancing Yiddish culture and  a Yiddish-based ethno-linguistic nationalism. But the social factors help explains the intellectuals’ success and the popularity of their ideas. The popularity of Yiddishism at the turn of the twentieth century (as articulated by Zhitlovsky, Prilucki, Nokhem Shtiff and others) lay in the fact that the ideology seemed to many to correspond to sociological reality: cutting across the differences between Zionists and socialists, middle-class and poor, religious and secular, the modern Yiddish-speaking Jewish people was in the making.

Bibliography Deutsch, N., The Jewish Dark Continent: Life and Death in the Russian Pale of Settlement (Cambridge, 2011). Esbikher, S. (Sholem Aleichem), “a reester iber ale zhargonishe vertk vos zenen opgedrukt gevorn inem yor 5648 [1887–8]”, Di yidishe folkbibliotek 1 (Kiev, 1888). Estraikh, G., “Languages of Yehupets Students”, East European Jewish Affairs 22:1 (1992), 63–71.

Yiddish and the Formation of a Secular Jewish National Identity  111 Fishman, D., The Rise of Modern Yiddish Culture (Pittsburgh, 2005). Klausner, I., Mi-Katovitz ad Bazel, 2 vols. (Jerusalem, 1965). Leshchinsky, Y., Dos yidishe folk in tsifern (Berlin, 1922). Nathans, B., Beyond the Pale: The Jewish Encounter with Late Imperial Russia, (Berkeley, 2002). Petrovsky-Shtern, Y., The Golden Age Shtetl: A New History of Jewish Life in Eastern Europe (Princeton, 2014). Rejzen, Z., Leksikon fun der yidisher literatur un prese (Warsaw, 1914). Sandrow, N., Vagabond Stars: A World History of Yiddish Theatre (Syracuse, 1996). Schneur, Z., Shklover yidn (Vil’na, 1929). Schwartz, S., The Jews of the Soviet Union (Syracuse, 1951). Shalit, M., “Statistik fun yidishn bikhermark in yor 1912”, in S.  Niger (ed.), Der Pinkes: ­Yorbukh far der geshikhte fun der yidisher literature un shprakh, folklore, kritik, un bibkliografye (Vilna, 1913). Zitron, S. L., Geshikhte fun der yidisher prese (Warsaw, 1925).

Michael Khodarkovsky

“Who Are We And Why?” Imperial, Muslim, and Ethnic Identities in the Russian Empire

“Who are we and why?” was the principal question that occupied the imperial minds for many generations, and despite its seeming simplicity, the answer was far from obvious, observed the protagonist of Mikhail Shishkin’s novel Maidenhair. This issue continued to preoccupy the minds of Russian intellectuals and government officials throughout the centuries, including the present occupants of the Kremlin, who seemed to have recently found a sinister answer to this perennial Russian question. The question addresses the core issues of the Russian identity that no Russian historian of the nineteenth century could avoid posing: what was a Russian state, Russian nation, and Russian empire? Were these notions synonymous, and if not, what was the relationship between them? Addressing the subject of the Russian Empire, one of Russia’s well-known writers and historians, Mikhail Petrovich Pogodin, compared the conquest of Siberia by Yermak in 1581 with the conquest of South America by Hernan Cortés. “We have discovered one third of Asia,” he wrote in 1837 while a professor of Russian history at the Moscow University, and asked, “is that not worthy of a celebration similar to America’s discovery by Christopher Columbus?” As more Russians were discovering the history of the West and of their own country, the comparisons were inevitable. Ethnographer Pavel Nebolsin, writing in 1849 about Yermak’s conquest of Siberia, went further than Pogodin. He suggested that the ruler of the Siberian khanate, Kuchum Khan, had been a far more sophisticated and powerful adversary than Montezuma and that Yermak had been far more disadvantaged than Cortés. In other words, Yermak’s heroic feat of conquering Siberia was greater than Cortés’ conquest of South America.1 But if the Russians observed the obvious parallels between the Russian conquest of Siberia and the Spanish conquest of the Americas, they could not but notice how a series of wars of independence ended the Spanish rule in the Americas and brought about the sovereign states of Latin America. If Russia’s conquest of Siberia was similar, should it not be expected to follow the same path? No, said Pogodin, this is where Russia’s experience diverged from the West. The Western states, he claimed, were founded on conquest, which resulted in

1 Nebolsin, P. I., Pokorenie Sibiri, 1849 (St. Petersburg, 2008), 158–61.

114  Michael Khodarkovsky enmities and divisions, while in Russia there was love and peaceful union because it came together through voluntary unification (prizvanie).2 In other words, similarities with the West were welcome as long as they confirmed Russia’s equal greatness, but when it came to the perceived weaknesses of the West, Russian experiences were drastically different. Pogodin might be seen as a controversial figure. A historian and a government official, he was considered  a Slavophile by some and  a Westernizer by ­others. Yet his views captured the cognitive dissonance of the Russian historiography: yes, Russia was like the West, and yes, it was different. In other words, Russia was unique. The Slavophiles wanted Russia to preserve the difference and uniqueness, the Westernizers wanted largely to erase the difference and make Russia similar to the West. What is remarkable is that, whether liberal or conservative, Westernizer or Slavophile, the overwhelming majority of the nineteenth century Russian intelligentsia chose to accept Pogodin’s postulate, maintaining that Russia’s expansion avoided the violence associated with European empires and that the Russian Empire was fundamentally benevolent towards its imperial non-Christian subjects. This line of thought continued throughout the twentieth century, except for two short periods. In the 1920s and ’30s, the official Soviet historiography condemned Russia as an oppressive colonial empire, and in the early 1990s, following the collapse of the Soviet Union, the regional historiographies, suddenly liberated from Moscow’s censorship, exploded in a burst of anti-Russian literature. How the myths of the Russian Empire came into existence, why they continued to persist, and what the role of non-Christians in the construction of the imperial consciousness was, are among some of the issues considered below. Beginning with Russia’s first official historian, Nikolai Karamzin, Russian history became more Russified, i. e., primarily focused on the history of the Russians proper. Several generations of Russian historians may have had different interpretations and topical emphasis, but they all saw Russian history as separate from that of the non-Christians (inorodtsy). For conservative historians such as Sergei Platonov, there was only one Russia populated by Russians. But even for liberal historians, Russia was either a reluctant empire destined to expand and colonize available lands (Vasilii Kliu­chevskii) or one that was pushing towards its natural frontiers (Vladimir Soloviev). All agreed that Russia’s expansion was inevitable, and that its civilizing mission against the savage and perfidious peoples along the imperial frontiers could only be sustained through conquest and eventual Russification. However, the crystallization of the Russian national identity in the canon of Russian historiography traveled on parallel tracks with the rise of the local

2 Miliukov, P., Glavnye techeniia russkoi istorii mysli (Moscow, 2000), 364.

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ethnic and cultural identities throughout the nineteenth century. The growing number of accounts of the non-Christian peoples increasingly branched out into a separate field of study, eventually laying the foundation for Russia’s Orientalism.3 The first authors of such studies were the members of the non-Christian elite, who eventually exercised a critical role in constructing the new ethnic identities among the empire’s non-Christian peoples. This new colonial elite, which consisted of men who were raised in their indigenous societies and then educated in St. Petersburg and other Russian towns, would become a conduit for the modern ideas of ethnicity and nationalism. At different times, various representatives of this elite would choose to create the alphabets for the indigenous languages, collect and write down the local folk tales, compile the codes of the customary law, and write the embryonic history of their people. Among those who created the historiographical and literary tradition for their own peoples were Shora Nogma and Khan Giray for the Adyges of the North Caucasus, Mirza Fath Ali Akhundov for the Azeris, Dorzhi Banzarov for the Buriats, Chokan Valikhanov for the Kazakhs, and Mirza Kazem Bek, Russia’s first professor of Oriental Studies. Below, we shall have a closer look at some of these individuals. One important attempt to conceptualize the heterogeneous Russian empire was made in the early 1920s in the circle of the émigré Russian writer and historian, Nikolai Trubetskoi. Trubetskoi’s Eurasian theory was an answer to the Russian paradox, a way to reconcile the irreconcilable – the fact that Russia was both a European land empire and a colonial empire in Asia. Eurasianism emphasized Russia’s geopolitical significance and the role of the state in keeping the empire whole. No wonder that Russian arch-conservatives re-discovered the theory of Eurasianism in the early 2000s and turned it into their new ideology.4 Russia’s contradictions were apparent. In reality, the Russian empire included colonial regions and peoples, which the government considered an integral part of the empire. To the Russian government officials, however, it seemed that the colonial empires were only the ones embodied by the European empires and their overseas possessions. In his proposal submitted to the Senate in the 1760s,  a Russian general and senator, N. I. Murav’ev, advocated the expansion of Russia’s commercial interests. To do so, he argued, Russia had to become a colonial empire like its European counterparts. With great admiration, Murav’ev described the sweat and sacrifices of the Portuguese, Spanish, French, 3 The first attempts to russify Russian historiography are traced to Mikhail Lomonosov; see Slezkine, Y., “Naturalists versus Nations: 18th Century Russian Scholars Confront Ethnic Diversity,” in D. Brower/E. Lazzerini (ed.), Russia’s Orient: Imperial Borderlands and Peoples, 1700–1917 (Indiana/Bloomington, 1997), 27–57. 4 See the numerous works of the founder of neo-Eurasianism, Alexander Dugin.

116  Michael Khodarkovsky English, and Dutch in establishing their colonies in the East. But the Russian empire was already in Asia, he insisted, and therefore, creating colonies there and expanding commerce the way the Europeans did, was only natural.5 Only in the nineteenth century did various Russian officials begin to cautiously voice suggestions that the term “colony” could be applied to certain parts of the Russian empire. For example, the Russian Finance Minister, Egor Kankrin (Georg von Cancrin), argued in the 1820s that Georgia should be treated as an economic colony. Likewise, some nineteenth-century Siberian intellectuals and administrators insisted that Siberia was a Russian colony. Without denying the Russian roots of the Siberians, this “Siberian separatism” promoted an idea of the self-governing Siberian nation similar to Britain’s Australian colonies.6 But the most persistent voices, advocating the existence of  a colony in the Russian empire, came from Russian officials familiar with the state of affairs in the recently conquered Central Asian territories. In the early 1870s, the Russian governor-general in Central Asia, Konstantin von Kaufmann, compared the Russian Turkestan with the British India and concluded that Russian Turkestan too should be designated a colony. A generation later, the Russian Senator, Count Konstantin Konstantinovich Pahlen, dispatched from St. Petersburg in 1908 to review and write a comprehensive report of the region, similarly argued that Turkestan was “a colony within the empire.” A few years later, the last governor of Turkestan, General A. N. Kuropatkin argued likewise. Yet, in all cases, the response from Petersburg was the same: the Russian empire had no colonies.7 This persistent denial of any hint of a colonial character of the Russian empire did not prevent some government officials from engaging in occasional comparisons between the Russian imperial experience and those of the British in India or French in Algeria. In 1842, the supreme commander of the Russian troop in the Caucasus, E. A. Golovin and the War Minister A. I. Chernyshev both suggested to the emperor that the British and French experiences might be usefully 5 Gosudarstvennaia Peterburgskaia biblioteka. Rukopisnyi otdel. F. 87 Ermitazhnogo sobraniia, “Zapiska Senatora N. I. Muraveva o razvitii kommertsii i putei soobshcheniia v Rossii,” ll. 30–32. I am grateful to Guido Hausmann, who generously shared this reference with me. 6 Pintner, W., “Government and Industry during the Ministry of Count Kankrin 1823–44”, Slavic Review, 23:1 (1964), 46–62. In 1882, the Minister of Internal Affairs, D. A. Tolstoy, responding to a suggestion of one of his officials about measures helping to merge Siberia with the metropole, stated unambiguously: “We have no colonies”, see Remnev, A., “Rossiiskaia vlast v Sibiri i na Dalnem Vostoke: kolonializm bez Ministerstva kolonii – russkii ‘Sonderweg’?” in M. Aust/A. Miller/R. Vulpius (ed.) Imperium inter Pares: Rol transferov v istorii Rossiiskoi imperii (Moscow, 2010), 158. 7 Brower, D., Turkestan and the Fate of the Russian Empire, (New York, 2003), 37. Khalid, A., “Culture and Power in Colonial Turkestan”, Cahiers d’Asie centrale 17/18 (2009), 413–47; Morrison, A., “‘Sowing the Seed of National Strife in This Alien Region:’ The Pahlen Report and Pereselenie in Turkestan, 1908–1910”, Acta Slavica Iaponica 31 (2012), 1–29, on p. 7.

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applied in the Caucasus. The report, finally submitted by Chernyshev in 1845, examined some of the French policies in Algeria and cautiously concluded that, while the French governance of Algeria was naturally very different from Russia’s, the French policies should be made known to the Russian policy makers in the region. This was a fine middle line between learning from the colonial experiences of others, while denying the colonial nature of the Russian empire.8 At the same time as officials in Petersburg refused to consider  a notion of colony within the Russian empire, they continued to rule over numerous nonChristian peoples and regions through the various arms of the Ministry of the Foreign Affairs or the War Ministry. For example, throughout the nineteenth century, the territories of Central Asia were administered by the Asiatic Department, a part of the Ministry of the Foreign Affairs.9 No wonder that denying the existence of colonies, Russia, of course, had to deny the existence of the colonial institutions as well. In reality, however, the Asiatic Department was little different from the British Colonial Office, the French les Bureaux Arabes, or the German Kolonialamt.10 * * * Among the variety of the specific policy tools used in ruling Russia’s non-Russian subjects, one remained constant: in order to govern the multitudes of the empire’s peoples, tongues, and religions, Russia depended on individuals who possessed an intimate knowledge of both Russian and their own society, and were thus able to serve as intermediaries between the imperial authorities and the native peoples. 8 Kolonialnaia politika Rossiskogo tsarizma v Azerbaidzhane v 20–60-kh godakh 19 veka. 2 vols. (Moscow, 1936), vol. 2, 286–90. Uncharacteristically, there is one report suggesting that in 1852 Nicholas I admitted the colonial nature of his policies in Siberia and the Caucasus, see Remnev, “Rossiiskaia vlast v Sibiri i na Dalnem Vostoke,” 157. Recently, Vladimir Bobrovnikov offered parallels between the Russian Caucasus and French Algeria in “Russkii Kavkaz i kolonialnyi Alzhir,” in Imperium inter Pares: Rol transferov v istorii Rossiiskoi imperii (Moscow, 2010), 182–209 and Alexander Morrison did the same for Russian Turkestan in his thoughtful review in “The Pleasure and Pitfalls of Colonial Comparisons”, Kritika. Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History 13:4 (2012), 919–936, on p. 928. 9 The Asiatic Department was founded by the imperial decree of April 19 th, 1819. The Department was charged with dealing in “matters related to Asia and the Oriental non-­ Christian population.” Its first director was K. K. Rodofinikin (1819–37), see Upravlen­ cheskaia elita Rossiiskoi imperii. Istoriia ministerstv, 1802–1917 (St. Petersburg, 2008), 74–75. For more on the Asiatic Department and Asiatic Committee in the War Ministry, see Marshall, A., The Russian General Staff and Asia, 1800–1917 (London, 2006), 26–37, 176–77. 10 The German example offers the closest parallel, where the colonial affairs were also run by the Colonial Department (Kolonialabteilung) within the German Foreign Office (Auswärtiges Amt) until it became separated into a Ministry of Colonial Affairs (Reichskolonialamt) in 1907 (Reinhard, W., Kleine Geschichte des Kolonialismus (Stuttgart, 20082) and Osterhammel, J., Kolonialismus: Geschichte – Formen – Folgen (Munich6, 2009).

118  Michael Khodarkovsky Hundreds of them would leave different parts of the empire and return to their own people different men: in a Russian officer’s uniform, a strange accent coloring their native tongue, with outlandish ideas in their heads, and, often, with a tiny cross hanging from their necklaces. They followed an uneasy path in negotiating the space of the indigenous societies within the Russian empire and, by extension, the process of searching for their own place and identity. All of them remained liminal personalities torn between two different cultures and identities – the traditional society into which they were born and the modern society into which they were drawn. In time, they came to realize that the empire they served left little room for them to reconcile their multiple identities. If they thought of themselves as ­intermediaries between the empire and their own peoples, they were bitterly disappointed – imperial authorities were only interested in using them as a tool to carry out government policies. Khan-Giray’s treatise on the ­Circassians was banned, Shora Nogma’s recommendations ignored, and Chokan Valikhanov’s calls for justice for the Kazakhs dismissed. These native interlocutors tried in different ways to bridge the space between the world of their homelands and that of imperial Russia. The push and pull between the two was  a tormenting experience in all empires, but Russian policies and expectations exerted far more pressure on the naive intermediaries to take sides and left little room for compromise. This colonial elite lacked a cohesive group identity. They remained individuals of different faiths, languages, and customs. They occupied the intermediate space between assimilation and foreignness and proved an effective conduit for transferring Russian political culture to the indigenous societies. But if the members of this new elite had hoped to open communication in both directions between Russian authorities and the local peoples, they were deeply mistaken. Their superiors often disregarded their advice, ignoring their analyses of the local situation. Gradually, they came to realize that the state intended to use them to channel information in one direction only.11 Let us have a closer look at several such individuals in Asiatic Russia. Shora Bek-Mirza Nogma (Nogmov) was born in 1794 at  a small Kabardin aul near Piati­gorsk (Beshtau). Shora was prepared to be a mullah, and after studying at a local mekteb (an Islamic primary school), he was sent to pursue religious learning at the prestigious medrese at Enderi in Central Daghestan. After graduating from the medrese in 1812, he returned to his native aul to work as a mullah. After a few years he was chosen to become a secretary (defterdar) at the Kabardin Provisional Court created by General Aleksei Ermolov in 1822.

11 Khodarkovsky, M., Bitter Choices: Loyalty and Betrayal in the Russian Conquest of the North Caucasus (Ithaca, 2011), 166–68.

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At this time, he already had a good command of five languages apart from his native Kabardin: Arabic, Kumyk, Abaza, Persian and Russian, and was working to create an alphabet for the Kabardin language. Eager to reach the imperial capital, where he could expand his interests in languages and history, in 1828 Nogma petitioned to join the newly formed Circassian Guard in the capital. His plans were thwarted by the deportation of his village further south to make room for Russian towns and spas in the present region of the Mineral Waters. After setting up a household at a new place on the Malka river, in 1829 Nogma was appointed a teacher at a school for native hostages at Fort Nalchik. In 1830, a new opportunity came along when several members of the Circassian Guard returned to the region to recruit young local nobles. Nogmov received an invitation from the commander of the Circassian Guard, S. A. Mukhanov, to come to teach the members of the unit to read and write in several languages. The Russian authorities, however, preferred chivalrous Circassian horsemen excelling in martial arts to someone with the literary pursuits like Nogma. He was allowed to leave but given no travel money. Determined to come to the imperial capital, in April 1830 Shora Nogma departed for St. Petersburg at his own expense to become the arms bearer (the rank-and-file among the nobles) in the C ­ ircassian Guard. As a new member of the Circassian Guard, Shora Nogma found himself under the command of a prominent Adyge prince, Khan-Giray. He was a descendant of an illustrious lineage, the Giray ruling house of the Crimean khans, as was well attested by his full name, Krym-Giray-Muhammed Giray Khan-­Giray. Throughout the centuries, the Crimean khans sent their princes to collect the slave tribute and to rule the Adyges of the north-west Caucasus. Some of these princes settled there, assimilated, and became a part of the Adyge clan structure. Indeed, Khan-Giray’s father was one of the chiefs of the Khamysh (Khmish) clan of the Bzhedug tribe, a subdivison of the Adyge people residing on the left bank of the Kuban river east of the newly founded Russian fort of Ekaterinodar (presently Krasnodar). Some time in the early 1800s, Khan-­Giray’s father, Muhammed-Giray, attracted by the offers from the Russian authorities, decided to cross the Kuban river, which separated the Ottoman from the Russian borderlands, and settle on the Russian side. In 1816, Muhammed-Giray was rewarded for his loyalty to Russia: he was formally enlisted into the Black See Cossack Host and given one of the highest ranks, the Host Captain (voiskovoi starshina). Following the established practice among the native peoples of the North Caucasus, Khan-Giray was sent away to spend his adolescent years in the family of his atalyk, an old and distinguished notable of the Shapsug tribe of the Adyges. There, in a mountain aul, Khan-Giray was groomed to be a leader, studied Arabic, the Quran and Islamic laws, and imbibed the martial spirit of his people. In January 1830, Khan-Giray joined the Circassian Guard as a highly decorated lieutenant of the Russian army who had already distinguished himself in Rus-

120  Michael Khodarkovsky sia’s wars against the Persians and Ottomans between 1826 and 1829. An impeccable officer and well-educated, charming socialite, Khan-Giray was welcomed into the literary salons of the capital, where he became personally acquainted with many Russian men of letters, including Alexander Pushkin. Shora Nogma too had vigorously pursued his intellectual interests: he established close ties with several professors at St. Petersburg University, studied languages, and devoted much of his time to the writing of the first Kabardin grammar. Upon his return to Kabarda in 1838, he was appointed the Secretary of the Kabardin Provisional Court and was in a position to choose the native candidates for studies at the military institutions in the imperial capital, the Stavropol gymnasium, and the Circassian Guards. Throughout this time Nogmov continued working on the Kabardin grammar and alphabet based on the Cyrillic script as well as collecting and translating Adyge folklore, stories, and history. While his grammar remained incomplete, in the late 1830s Khan-Giray completed the treatise The Notes on the Circassia, and his collection of Adyge tales was published in Russian in 1861 under the title A History of the Adyge People. Nicholas I called Khan-Giray “the Karamzin of Circassia”, which, however, did not prevent him from later banning The Notes on the Circassia from publication. Shortly after Khan-Giray’s premature death at the age of 34, his collection of historical tales appeared in publication under the title The Circassian Legends and Tales. In the late imperial and the early Soviet period in particular, Khan-Giray was construed as  a founder of the historical and literary tradition of the Western Adyge, the Circassians, and Shora Nogma that of the Eastern Adyge, the Kabardins. It is not as if other options in constructing local traditions and identities did not exist. For instance, the first attempts to compile the Adyge alphabet and to translate the Quran into the Adyge were made in the early 1820s by the Efendi Muhammed Shapsugov and Notauk Sheretluk. But any such efforts were firmly opposed by the ulema, for whom the only written language was Arabic – the sacred language of the sacred book.12 Likewise, in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, several prominent Muslim jurists in northern Daghestan made important contributions to the study of the sharia and Islamic discourse, but made no attempt to create alphabets for local languages or to consider the issues of local history and culture.13 12 Istoriia Narodov Severnogo Kavkaza (Moscow, 1988) 236–7; Zhemukhov, S. N., Zhizn Shory Nogma (Nalchik, 2002), 33–37. For a brief discussion of the Russian efforts to study and transcribe the local languages in the second half of the nineteenth century, see Jersild, A., Orientalism and Empire: North Caucasus Mountain Peoples and the Georgian Frontier, 1845–1917 (Montreal, 2002), 80–84. 13 Bobrovnikov, V. S., Musulmane Severnogo Kavkaza: obychai, pravo, nasilie (Moscow, 2002), 111; Kemper, M., Herrschaft, Recht und Islam in Daghestan: Von den Khanaten und ­Gemeindebünden zum gihad-Staat (Wiesbaden, 2005), 359–66, 382–92.

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The task of constructing ethnic identities fell on the Russified local elite and Russian scholarly and government officials. After all, ethnicity was a Western concept brought through and from Russia. The ironies of the empire were often inescapable, as in the case of Shora Nogma, who was greatly influenced by A. J. Sjögren – an ethnic Finn educated at a Swedish gymnasium at a time when his homeland was part of Sweden, and who later continued to write in Swedish. Shortly after Finland became annexed to the Russian Empire in 1809, Sjögren became a conduit of Western ideas in the Russian imperial periphery and was bestowed with membership in the Russian Academy of Sciences. It was a Russified Swedish Finn who brought modern ideas of ethnicity, philology, and historiography to the North Caucasus! Clearly, modernity arrived in a form of ethnicity nurtured within the Russian colonial empire. In his classic study Seeing Like a State, James C. Scott argued that large-scale social projects failed because the arrival of modern ideologies and bureaucracies erased local knowledge and local identities. True, but in the process, he neglected to observe that they often inadvertently reshape and create new identities and ideologies. It is the ultimate paradox of modernity that integration becomes an incubator of ethnic identities and eventually breeds separatism. The Russian empire in Asia included a vast expanse of land populated by very different peoples and societies, inevitably resulting in different regional dynamics of imperial rule. In Siberia, for instance, the majority of the native population consisted of small and relatively primitive societies that could be easily brushed aside by the consecutive waves of the Slavic colonists. Siberia became a refuge place for those seeking a religious or personal freedom and a dumping ground for the empire’s political exiles and criminals. As such, Siberia was similar to the British colonies in the North America and Australia. No wonder that some nineteenth-century government officials and Siberian intellectuals tried in vain to have Siberia considered a colony of Russia.14 The conquest of Central Asia in the second half of the nineteenth century confronted the Russian authorities with a different challenge. The arable lands of the region were densely populated, the agriculture was highly developed, the population was thoroughly Muslim, and the urban centers were much older than any in Russia itself. Much like the British India, the Central Asia could not be easily colonized and transformed into Russia’s image. Instead, it had to be administered delicately by the variety of means. The open expanse of the enormous Eurasian steppe from the Southern Siberia to the Lower Volga basin was a pastureland of various Turko-Mongol nomadic peoples, most significantly the Kazakhs and Kalmyks. The human and physical geography of this region presented a special challenge to the expanding empire. Here there were no urban centers to conquer and no decisive victories 14 Remnev, “Rossiiskaia vlast v Sibiri i na Dalnem Vostoke”, 158.

122  Michael Khodarkovsky to win against the people, who were perpetually on the move with all their herds and belongings. The region had to be colonized incrementally through the construction of the Russian limes, the fortification lines that continued to advance into the steppe. By the early 1800s, most of the steppe nomads found themselves cut off from the vital pastureland, impoverished, and dependent on the Russian authorities. In this region, Russia’s mission to civilize included a task of settling the nomadic population and turning a nomad into a peasant. Finally, the Caucasia, an area between the Black and Caspian Seas, consisted of two distinct regions divided by the high mountains of the Caucasus Range: the South and North Caucasus. In the south, the mountains, valleys and fertile plains had long been settled and subjected to the influences of the ancient civilizations of the Greeks and Persians. By the nineteenth century, the towns and agricultural communities of the Christian Armenians and Georgians populated the southwest and central part of the South Caucasus, while the villages and cities of the Shi’a Muslim Azeris dominated the southeast. The Armenians and Georgians stood out among the peoples of the Asiatic Russia as the only Christian peoples and the heirs to the former sovereign monarchs and kingdoms. Here too, the calls to treat the region as a colony were rejected by St. Petersburg, and the South Caucasus was squarely placed within the Russian administration. The political geography of the North Caucasus stood in sharp contrast to the South Caucasus. Exposed to the vagaries of life on the edge of the great Eurasian steppe, the North Caucasus was only intermittently subjected to the influences of great civilizations and monotheistic religions, and did not give rise to any sustainable sovereign political entities. It combined the characteristics of several regions: the steppe occupied primarily by the nomadic Kalmyks and Nogays, the foothills of the Caucasus with the numerous Kumyk, Chechen and Adyge villages practicing both agriculture and animal husbandry, and the villages and hamlets of the high mountains protected by the forbidding terrain of the Caucasus Range. Accordingly, St. Petersburg relied on a panoply of policies during the military conquest of the region: construction of the fortification lines, seizure of the pasturelands, expulsion of the native villagers, settling the Slavic and other Christian colonists, wholesale destruction of the mountain villages and the crops, and, finally, a massive deportation of the natives to the Ottoman empire. Despite the differences between the regions of the Asiatic Russia, what Russia’s Asian territories had in common was a lack of the sovereign monarchies and states with the defined boundaries. The reality was somewhat more complex than Moscow assumed, but this was how Moscow perceived the world east and south of its capital, and the perceptions, of course, are known to create a reality of their own. From the seventeenth century onward, the Russian imperial vocabulary continuously reinforced the divide between the Russian

“Who Are We And Why?” 123

state and the non-state organized societies. What the native peoples often believed to be a peace treaty, the Russians claimed to be an oath of allegiance to the tsar. The native settlements were referred to as villages, their military activity as raiding, and their resistance to the Russian invasion as a rebellion against the state. The Russian authorities preferred to ignore the inconvenient facts that some of the native settlements were larger than the neighboring Russian towns, that their “raids” could include up to ten thousand horsemen, and that the ­“rebels” ­(miatezhniki) had first to become a part of the empire before they could rebel. If the lack of sovereign states and monarchs in Asiatic Russia helped to articulate Russia’s civilizing mission, it did not explain how to rule different regions, peoples, and religions. The Russian authorities refused to concede that theirs too was a colonial empire. Instead, the imperial subconsciousness continued to revolve around the ideas of a universal monarch and civilization, and a belief that some day the non-Russians would become Russian. The myth and reality could not be easily reconciled, however, and resulted in that particular Russian hybrid of the hyper accentuated empire and underemphasized colonialism. Throughout the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, the grand imperial ambition demanded an ultimate integration of the empire’s diverse human landscape into the Russian Christian imperial identity. But the reality on the ground defied this long-term vision, requiring instead the tactics and policies that could be adapted to the specific circumstances. With the exception of the late eighteenth century, when Russia’s policy was to sow divisions between the indigenous elite and commoners, the imperial authorities preferred to rely on the local secular elite, and, when necessary, religious as well. Economic and political carrots and sticks intended to ensure the cooperation and loyalty of the elite, while the courts, administration, schools and missionary work meant to pave the road towards a broader integration of the non-Russians into the empire. In 1914, on the eve of World War I, the official government publication Asiatic Russia proclaimed that the “lands of Asiatic Russia are an indivisible and inseparable part of our state and at the same time our only colony”.15 Nothing could have illustrated the cognitive dissonance of the Russian Empire better than this statement. After centuries of denial and prevarications, the Russian officials were ready to admit that Russia was a colonial empire, and that its ter­ ritories in Asia constituted such a colony. Yet these colonial lands and peoples remained an indivisible part of Russia. 15 Aziatskaia Rossiia: Izdanie Pereselencheskogo upravleniia glavnogo upravleniia zemleustroistva i zemledeliia, 3 vols. (St. Petersburg, 1914), 1:viii, as quoted in Masuero, A., “Territorial Colonization in Late Imperial Russia: Stages in the Development of a Concept”, in ­Kritika: Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History 14:1 (2013), 59–91, on p. 52.

124  Michael Khodarkovsky Swept away by the revolutions of 1917, the imperial government never had a chance to address this contradiction, nor did it know how to reconcile the imperial Russian and local non-Russian historiographies. Five years later, the B­olsheviks offered their own radical solution by reconstituting the former empire as a new polity, the USSR . The genie of ethnicity and nationalism was put in the new socialist vessel to be contained there with relative success for seven decades. But then the vessel cracked and broke, and the genie was out again. Whether this vessel broke apart under the pressure from the struggling genie or because of its own structural deficiencies is an issue open to debate. One thing, however, is clear: the question of “Who Are We and Why?” remains just as important today as it was in the past.

Bibliography Bobrovnikov, V., “Russkii Kavkaz i kolonialnyi Alzhir,” in M. Aust, A. Miller, R. Vulpius (ed.), Imperium inter Pares: Rol transferov v istorii Rossiiskoi imperii (Moscow, 2010), 182–209. Bobrovnikov, V. S., Musulmane Severnogo Kavkaza: obychai, pravo, nasilie (Moscow, 2002) Brower, D., Turkestan and the Fate of the Russian Empire, (New York, 2003). Gosudarstvennaia Peterburgskaia biblioteka. Rukopisnyi otdel. F. 87 Ermitazhnogo sobraniia, “Zapiska Senatora N. I. Muraveva o razvitii kommertsii i putei soobshcheniia v Rossii”. Istoriia Narodov Severnogo Kavkaza (Moscow, 1988). Jersild, A., Orientalism and Empire: North Caucasus Mountain Peoples and the Georgian Frontier, 1845–1917 (Montreal, 2002). Kemper, M., Herrschaft, Recht und Islam in Daghestan: von den Khanaten und Gemeinde­ bünden zum gihad-Staat (Wiesbaden, 2005). Khalid, A., “Culture and Power in Colonial Turkestan”, Cahiers d’Asie centrale 17/18 (2009), 413–47. Kolonialnaia politika Rossiskogo tsarizma v Azerbaidzhane v 20–60-kh godakh 19 veka. 2 vols. (Moscow, 1936). Khodarkovsky, M., Bitter Choices: Loyalty and Betrayal in the Russian Conquest of the North Caucasus (Ithaca, 2011). Marshall, A., The Russian General Staff and Asia, 1800–1917 (London, 2006). Masuero, A., “Territorial Colonization in Late Imperial Russia: Stages in the Development of a Concept”, in Kritika: Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History 14:1 (2013), 59–91. Miliukov, P., Glavnye techeniia russkoi istorii mysli (Moscow, 2000). Morrison, A., “‘Sowing the Seed of National Strife in This Alien Region:’ The Pahlen Report and Pereselenie in Turkestan, 1908–1910”, Acta Slavica Iaponica 31 (2012), 1–29. Morrison, A., “The Pleasure and Pitfalls of Colonial Comparisons”, Kritika. Explorations in Russian and Eurasian History 13:4 (2012), 919–936. Nebolsin, P. I.. Pokorenie Sibiri, 1849 (St. Petersburg, 2008). Osterhammel, J., Kolonialismus: Geschichte – Formen – Folgen, (Munich, 20096). Pintner, W., “Government and Industry during the Ministry of Count Kankrin 1823–44”, Slavic Review, 23:1 (1964), 46–62. Reinhard, W., Kleine Geschichte des Kolonialismus, (Stuttgart, 20082). Remnev, A., “Rossiiskaia vlast v Sibiri i na Dalnem Vostoke: kolonializm bez Ministerstva kolonii  – russkii ‘Sonderweg’?” in M. Aust, A. Miller, R. Vulpius (ed.) Imperium inter Pares: Rol transferov v istorii Rossiiskoi imperii (Moscow, 2010), 150–181.

“Who Are We And Why?” 125 Slezkine, Y.,“Naturalists versus Nations: 18th Century Russian Scholars Confront Ethnic Diversity,” in D. Brower/E. Lazzerini (ed.), Russia’s Orient: Imperial Borderlands and Peoples, 1700–1917 (Indiana/Bloomington, 1997), 27–57. Upravlencheskaia elita Rossiiskoi imperii. Istoriia ministerstv, 1802–1917 (St. Petersburg, 2008). Zhemukhov, S. N., Zhizn Shory Nogma (Nalchik, 2002).

Adeeb Khalid

Conflict and Authority among Central Asian Muslims in the Era of the Russian Revolution

A comparison of Jews and Muslims in the Russian Empire and the USSR is revealing precisely because the comparison is asymmetrical. The asymmetry casts light on both the Jews and the Muslims of the Russian Empire. For although Judaism and Islam were both “alien faiths” tolerated in various ways since the time of Catherine II, the Jewish and Muslim communities were a different matter. The vast bulk of the empire’s Jewish population came under Russian rule through the partitions of Poland. The empire’s Muslim communities were conquered over time and, unlike the Jews of Poland, had ties to land and memories of sovereignty that were crucial to how they were integrated (or not) by the imperial state. Likewise, neither the Jewish, nor the Muslim, populations of the Russian Empire were homogenous, but while Ashkenazi Jews of the Pale of Settlement made up the large majority of the population, and indeed are the sole subjects of the mainstream narratives of “the Jews of the Russian Empire”,1 the Muslim population was immensely varied. Russia had gathered her Muslims over the course of centuries.2 Different Muslim societies had been incorporated into the Russian state in different circumstances, on very different conditions, and as a result, enjoyed vastly different legal statuses. The Tatar lands, which had been under Russian rule since the middle of the sixteenth century, were tightly knit into the administrative fabric of the empire, their population integrated into imperial categories, regardless of religion. The expansion of the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries brought many more Muslims into the empire, and they were accommodated differently. The annexation of the Crimea in 1783 was followed by a mass exodus of the population to the Ottoman Empire, but the aristocrats who stayed behind were absorbed into the Russian nobility. Conquests at the turn of the nineteenth century brought Russia to the Caucasus. While Russian armies conquered the Transcaucasian principalities (including present-day Azerbaijan) 1 The Russian Empire acquired Jewish populations also through its conquests of the Crimea, Transcaucasia, and Central Asia, but these communities are habitually written about in separate specialized literatures and seldom as part of “the Jews of the Russian Empire”. 2 For a very brief overview, see Khalid, A., “Russia, Central Asia and the Caucasus to 1917”, in The New Cambridge History of Islam 5 (Cambridge, 2010), 180–202.

128  Adeeb Khalid with relative ease, the peoples of the Caucasus Mountains consumed Russian energies for the first half of the nineteenth century. The final subjugation of the mountaineers was completed only with the capture of their military and spiritual leader Shamil in 1859. The region remained under military administration until the end of the old regime, and local elites were not co-opted into the nobility. Turkestan, conquered between 1864 and 1889, in the context of imperial competition with Britain, was ruled more distantly still. The Russians found its heat and dust utterly alien, and patterned their rule on the model of the French in Algeria and the British in India. Bukhara and Khiva were not even annexed in toto, but left as protectorates. At the turn of the twentieth century, then, the Volga basin was the heartland of the empire, Turkestan a distant colony. How the Russian Empire dealt with its various Muslim populations, depended very much on these historical circumstances. In fact, the only way one can understand the Russian Empire’s interactions with its Muslim population is through the prism of diversity. Russia did not have a single Islamic policy, nor did most Muslims see themselves as belonging to a single community. By the nineteenth century, Tatar nobles enjoyed all the rights of the Russian nobility, Tatar merchants occupied a key niche in Russia’s trade with Central Asia, and Tatar soldiers, as Franziska Davies shows in this volume, served in the army. A key feature of Tatar public life was the “spiritual assembly” of Orenburg, established in 1788 as a “church” for Islam.3 In the Crimea and in the Caucasus, too, the state created spiritual assemblies patterned on the one in Orenburg.4 In Turkestan, the Russian Empire did not establish a spiritual assembly, nor did it incorporate local elites into the Russian nobility or attempt to conscript the natives into the imperial army (at least until 1916). If the various Muslim societies of the empire differed from one another, they were all internally riven as well, although the dynamics of internal conflict varied from society to society. One axis of conflict pitted modernist reformers against their conservative or traditionalist opponents. It was a competition over leadership, over the path to the future, over the meaning of the community itself. In this paper, I am primarily interested in tracing the way in which the ­notion of what it meant to be a Muslim was contested in one Muslim society of the Russian Empire during this tumultuous age. My focus will be on Turkestan, the most recent Muslim acquisition of the empire, but home to about a third of its Muslims. The Russian conquest of Central Asia and then the Russian Revolution unleashed transformations in society that altered cultural dynamics within 3 Azamatov, D. D., Orenburgskoe magometanskoe dukhovnoe sobranie v kontse XVIII– XIX vv. (Ufa, 1999); Crews, R. D., For Prophet and Tsar: Islam and Empire in Russia and Cen

tral Asia (Cambridge, 2006). 4 On these spiritual assemblies, see Meyer, J. H., “Turkic Worlds: Community Leadership and Collective Identity in the Russian and Ottoman Empires, 1870–1914”, PhD dissertation (Brown University, 2007).

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Central Asian society. Currents of modernist reform that took root among the region’s nascent intelligentsia (the Jadids) after the turn of the twentieth century underpinned a challenge to the authority of older elites. The Russian Revolution pushed this conflict to the fore. Modernists often saw in the revolution the promise of equality, modernization, and a cultural revolution that they had aspired to before 1917.5 As conflict erupted within Muslim societies, the already porous lines separating them from outsiders – from the empire as a whole – dissolved. It is impossible to speak of a single Muslim community of the empire during the era of the Russian Revolution. There had been attempts to forge a pan-Russian Muslim political community, but their success was muted, even if their historiographical footprint is large. The idea that the Muslims of the Russian Empire belonged to  a single community was mooted by a number of Tatar, Crimean, and Azerbaijani figures at the beginning of the twentieth century. They managed to convene the first Congress of the Muslims of Russia in Nizhnii Novgorod in 1904. More congresses followed in the heady days of the revolution of 1905, leading to  a resolution to organize  a political party, called Ittifaq ul-muslimin, the Union of Muslims, that would work on behalf of all the Muslims of the Russian Empire.6 Yet the congresses were dominated by delegates from European Russia and the Caucasus and proved rather irrelevant to Central Asia.7 The postStolypin chill proved fatal for this movement; the Ittifaq was denied registration as a political party, and Muslim franchise was drastically limited in the Third and Fourth Dumas (Turkestan was entirely disenfranchised). A fourth Muslim congress met in the early summer of 1914, but it was a mere shadow of the first three and hardly anyone took notice.8 Nevertheless, there was  a Muslim caucus in the Duma in which Muslim deputies from European Russia served as spokesmen for all Muslims of the empire.9 The February Revolution revived the all-Russian Muslim movement. A Muslim conference met in Moscow in May but was unable to bridge the very real differences among the various Muslim societies. The fact is that the “Muslims of the Russian Empire” were a community created by the historical accident of Russian conquest. And while incorpo 5 Khalid, A., The Politics of Muslim Cultural Reform: Jadidism in Central Asia (Berkeley, 1998). 6 On the three Muslim congresses of 1905–06, see Bigi, M. J., Islahat esaslarï (Petrograd, 1915); Zenkovsky, S. A., Pan-Turkism and Islam in Russia (Cambridge, 1960); Mukhetdinov, D. V. (ed.), Forumy rossiiskikh musul’man: na poroge novogo tysiacheletiia. Materialy Vserossiiskoi nauchno-prakticheskoi konferentsii … k 100-letiiu provedeniia I Vserossiiskogo musul’manskogo s’ezda (1905–2005) (Nizhnii Novgorod, 2006). 7 Khalid, The Politics of Muslim Cultural Reform, 231–232. 8 Khalid, The Politics of Muslim Cultural Reform, 232–233. 9 Usmanova, D., Musul’manskie predstaviteli v rossiiskom parlamente: 1906–1916 (­ Kazan, 2005); eadem., Musul’manskaia fraktsiia i problemy “svobody sovesti” v Gosudarsvennoi Dume Rossii, 1906–1917 (Kazan, 1999).

130  Adeeb Khalid ration into the same empire gave the various communities involved something in common, it was scarcely enough to undergird the movement. The divisions came to the fore in Moscow over the question of the form of autonomy most appropriate to Muslims. The conference turned into a contest between the Tatars and the rest: mainstream Tatar opinion favored national-cultural autonomy, while almost everybody else voted in favor of territorial autonomy.10 Although, after lengthy debate, the Congress passed a compromise resolution that recognized both forms of autonomy, the confrontation cost  a de facto Tatar withdrawal from the movement. The Second All-Russian Muslim Congress, held in Kazan in July, was an all-Tatar affair, its exclusivity underscored by the refusal of its organizers to avoid a conflict with a Kazakh congress in Orenburg. The panIslamic idea was dead. It had been an attempt, a rather optimistic one, by Tatar figures to claim leadership for a far larger constituency than just the Tatars, and it never really took off. The Muslim population of the Russian Empire did not experience the revolution in a singular way.11

Contesting Islam The February Revolution was greeted with unabashed joy throughout urban Turkestan. Poems in Uzbek extolling “The New Liberty” and “The Great Russian Revolution” sold in thousands of copies in Tashkent in March, and an immense political mobilization began. A congress of Muslims of Turkestan was held in Tashkent in April, partly to elect delegates for the Moscow conference. What seemed to be the pinnacle of Muslim political mobilization had laid bare all the conflicts in Central Asian society.12 Over the two decades preceding the revolution, the Jadids had articulated a vision for the future of Turkestan in which modern education would allow the inhabitants of the region to take their rightful place in the empire and the modern world at large. The Jadids argued for a thoroughgoing reform of society and local cultural practices, which they argued had fallen away from the “true” intent of Islam. For them, “true Islam” demanded modern education and cultural reform. That is, they saw their reform agenda as fulfilling certain basic obligations of Islam; they never argued that Turkestanis should abjure or disown Islam 10 Butun Rusya Müsülmanlarïnïng 1917nchi yilda 1–11 Mayda Mäskävdä bolghan umumi isyizdining protaqollarï (Petrograd, 1917); see also Khalid, The Politics of Muslim Cultural ­Reform, 265–266. 11 Salavat Iskhakov attempts to bring all Muslim political activity under a single compass, but his work is largely cumulative as a result: Iskhakov, S., Rossiiskie musul’mane i revoliutsiia 1917–1918 (Moscow, 2004). 12 This section outlines in condensed form the narrative presented in Khalid, The Politics of Muslim Cultural Reform, chapter 8.

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in order to progress. This reform effort directly posed a challenge to established elites, especially the religious elite, the ulama, whose legitimacy, authority, and sincerity the Jadids questioned. For the ulama, preserving customs and traditions and practices they knew, and which they understood as the essence of ­Islam, took precedence over large-scale innovation. The debate over modernist reform was thus a debate over the nature of Islam itself. Until February 1917, this debate took place in the realm of culture – a politics of exhortation revolving around methods of schooling, the press, and new literary forms. The revolution completely redefined the parameters of competition among the Muslim elites of Turkestan. Now the state came to occupy a central place in their thinking about the future; the politics of admonition gave way to the politics of mobilization, and votes took the place of exhortation. The political mobilization of the indigenous population began in the name of “the Muslims of ­Turkestan”. All groups in the political leadership agreed on this combination of territorial and confessional principles, but they nevertheless imbued them with different emphases. Throughout the year, the ulama pressed their claims in terms of their possession of Islamic knowledge. They were the true guardians of the community and its guides in this moment of transformation. They had little patience for their ­challengers, whom they dismissed as “inexperienced youth … who had received neither a complete religious, nor worldly education.”13 In the summer, the ulama refused to field a joint slate of candidates with the Jadids for ­Tashkent’s municipal elections because, they argued, they knew “which children [bolalar] would gain control of the public affairs of the Muslims of Tashkent” if they cooperated.14 In September, in a congress that attracted delegates from all over Central Asia, the ulama resolved that “the affairs of religion and of this world should not be separated, i. e., everything from schools to questions of land and justice should be solved according to the shariat”, of which they were to be the sole interpreters.15 Their argument for the authority of Islam and the shariat was an assertion of their own power and of a social order that had emerged in the previous half-century. The ulama’s opponents also spoke of Islam and the shariat, but in a rather different way. For the Jadids, “the advent of liberty” was an opportunity to reform Islam and to reawaken it. Only a thoroughgoing reform would solve the community’s problems and ensure its future. At the second Turkestan Muslim Congress in early September, Islam Shahiahmedov presented the Jadid plan for Turkestan’s political future. Turkestan was to have its own duma with authority in all matters except external affairs, defense, posts and telegraphs, and the judi 13 Ulamo Jamiyati, Haqiqatg’a xilof torqatilgan xitobnomag’a javob va ham bayon-i ahvol (Tashkent, 1917), 2. 14 Ibid., 5–7. 15 “Ulamo isyazdining qarorlari,” Ulug’ Turkiston, September 30, 1917.

132  Adeeb Khalid ciary; all citizens of Russia were to be equal, regardless of religion, nationality, or class, and the freedoms of assembly, religion and conversion were to be guaranteed. In terms of personal law, Muslims were to be governed by the shariat, and a resolution called for the establishment of a shariat administration (mahkama-yi shar‘iya) in each oblast. The crucial difference with the ulama’s position was the provision that the administrations be elected and that their members be “educated and aware of contemporary needs” (zamondan xabardor, ilmlik kishilar).16 The debate was not one between Muslim and secular notions of politics, but over different understandings of Islam. Nor were the Jadids without support from the ulama. Some Jadids had impeccable credentials as ulama, but they acquired the support of other ulama as well. In September,  a group of reform-minded ulama organized a Fuqaho Jamiyati (Council of Jurists) as a counterweight to the Ulamo Jamiyati (Council of Scholars) that had struggled with Jadids all summer long. In the months that followed, the Fuqaho Jamiyati consistently supported the Jadids and provided them Islamic legitimacy.17 Ultimately, Russian soldiers in Tashkent seized power in the name of the soviets and rendered all of this moot, but the point is that political action in the name of Islam by committed, self-conscious Muslims could take many different forms. And while articulated in Islamic terms, Muslim politics was never isolated from other political concerns. Muslim politics in 1917 were based on principles of sociability opened up by the revolution, and revolved around questions of autonomy, representation, and the division of powers as much as they did about purely religious issues.

The Unravelling of Order The seizure of power by the predominantly Russian soviet of Tashkent’s new city inaugurated a new chapter in the political conflict within Muslim society. The Jadids hastily organized another conference of the Muslims of Turkestan in Kokand and declared Turkestan autonomous within a democratic Russia (i. e., in the dispensation of the February Revolution).18 The ulama boycotted the conference and sought to negotiate with the soviet. The result was a massive rupture in the relations between the Jadids and the ulama that shaped the contours of politics in Central Asia’s urban Muslim society for the decade and a half to come. But urban society, to which we shall return, was only one part of the pic 16 Turon, September 14, 1917. 17 “Toshkand Fuqaho jamiyati,” Kengash, September 8, 1917; see also Sartori, P., “When a Mufti Turned Islamism into Political Pragmatism: Sadreddin-Khan and the Struggle for an Independent Turkestan”, Cahiers d’Asie centrale 15/16 (2007), 118–139, on pp. 128–129. 18 On the autonomous government, see Agzamkhodzhaev, S., Istoriia Turkestanskoi avto­nomii (Turkiston Muxtoriayti) (Tashkent, 2006).

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ture. The Soviet seizure of power took place at the point of Russian bayonets. The autonomous government proclaimed by the Jadids was destroyed (along with much of Kokand) by Russian soldiers. While claims to the seizure of power by the Soviets can incorporate the story of Turkestan into the metanarrative of the Russian Revolution, the facts on the ground were very different. The seizure of power was driven by local concerns. A famine had gripped the region in the winter of 1917–18 and turned access to food into a matter of life and death. In the countryside, the revolution produced state collapse. Russian settlers began seizing the lands of their local neighbors, while in the cities, Russians began to confiscate grain stored in indigenous neighborhoods. All of this could be justified in terms of struggle with the burzhui or the socialization of land, but its c­ olonial essence was quite visible.19 The response of Central Asian peasants was to take up arms in defense of their food supplies and their land. Thus began the rural insurgency of the Basmachi that lasted into 1924. It is tempting to weave the Basmachi into a national narrative, and scholars in the West have often done precisely that. The view of the Basmachi insurgency as a national liberation movement is also embraced in post-Soviet Uzbekistan.20 However, there was little national about the Basmachi or their movement. Imperial collapse brought about  a resurgence of local solidarities and forms of authority that were often deeply inimical to anything the fifty years of Russian rule had brought about. The major Basmachi leaders derived their authority from a number of sources: some were scions of the hereditary military elite of the Kokand khanate, others were hereditary rulers of distant provinces of Bukhara or Khiva that had been subdued by the emirs of Bukhara only after the Russian conquest (and with Russian help), who now felt free to act on their own; yet others came from families of Sufi masters. And still others were outlaws who rose up in the period of collapse to offer (or enforce) protection of the 19 On the centrality of the conflict over food supply, see Buttino, M., La rivoluzione capovolta: l’Asia centrale tra il crollo dell’impero zarista e la formazione dell’URSS (Naples, 2003); Sahadeo, J., Russian Colonial Society in Tashkent (Bloomington, 2007), chapter 7; Khalid, A., “Turkestan v 1917–1922 godakh: bor’ba za vlast’ na okraine Rossii”, in G. N. Sevost’ianov (ed.), Tragediia velikoi derzhavy: natsional’nyi vopros i raspad Sovetskogo Soiuza (Moscow, 2005), 189–226. 20 The view originated with Castagné, J., Les Basmatchis: le mouvement national des indigènes d’Asie Centrale depuis la Révolution d’octobre 1917 jusqu’en octobre 1924 (Paris, 1925), but was canonized by Caroe, O., Soviet Empire: The Turks of Central Asia and Stalinism (London, 1954), ch. 7. Émigré writers were also inclined to this view; the émigré position is best articulated by Hayit, B., Basmatschi: Nationaler Kampf Turkestans in den Jahren 1917 bis 1934 (Cologne, 1992); see also Bademci, A., 1917–1934 Türkistan Millî İstiklâl Hareketi: Korbaşilar ve Enver Paşa (Istanbul, 2010 [orig. 1975]). In post-Soviet Uzbekistan, the term “Basmachi” is eschewed in favour of qo’rboshilar, “generals”, and the movement is seen as one of national liberation. See, e.g., Ziyoyeva, D. H., Tukiston milliy ozodlik harakati (Mustabid tuzumga qarshi 1916 yil va 1918–1924 yillaridagi xalq kurashlari tarixshunosligi) (Tashkent, 2000); Rajabov, Q., Buxoroga Qizil Armiya bosqini va unga qarshi kurash (Tashkent, 2002).

134  Adeeb Khalid rural p ­ opulation. In all cases, however, the leadership and its concerns was intensely local and aimed at the defense of land and resources, as well as customary practices and power relations. The customary way of life was threatened by innovations coming from the city, the modern state, and modernizing elites. The B ­ asmachi insurgency was a revolt against the exactions (of food and revenue) of a city-based government, and for many it made little difference whether that government was staffed by Europeans or Muslims.21 The localism also meant that the Basmachi had little by way of an explicit political program: they were as likely to fight each other as the Russians. This produced  a fractious leadership that was incapable of coming up with  a common national front, even if national slogans had been conceivable to them. The ­Basmachi represented a completely different form of leadership than urban Muslims, Jadids, and Communists alike. Yet again, a common Muslimness did not yield a common political program. If anything, the struggle against the Basmachi paved the path to the nascent Soviet order for many Turkestani Muslims, who joined the Soviets and even the Red Army to struggle against rural insurgency.

Muslim Anticlericalism The Soviet order had been thrown open to the indigenous population by the decree of the center. The Bolshevik leadership in Moscow was appalled at the doings of the Tashkent soviet and sought to assert control over local affairs. This proved quite difficult, for Turkestan was cut off from inner Russia by the Civil War until the autumn of 1919. Nevertheless, through  a combination of moral suasion, threats from afar, and the dispatch of plenipotentiaries, the center forced the Tashkent soviet to loosen its grip on power. Turkestan was proclaimed a Soviet Autonomous Republic on May 1, 1918 and the door opened to members of the local Muslim population. This transformed the conflict within Muslim society quite substantially. The ulama had sought to negotiate with the Tashkent soviet while the Jadids had sought to create a counterpart to the Soviets. Now, the Jadids saw their opportunity and flocked to the new party and Soviet organs. Over the next few months, they used their access to the new order 21 I am currently preparing a more expansive formulation of this interpretation of the Basmachi. See also, Ginzburg, S., “Basmachestvo v Fergane”, in Ocherki revoliutsionnogo dvizheniia v Srednei Azii: Sbornik statei (Moscow, 1926). Lorenz, R., “Economic Bases of the Basmachi Movement in the Farghana Valley”, in A. Kappeler/G. Simon/G. Brunner (ed.), Muslim Communities Reemerge: Historical Perspectives on Nationality, Politics, and Opposition in the Former Soviet Union and Yugoslavia (Durham, 1994), 277–303; Buttino, M. “Politics and Social Conflict during a Famine: Turkestan immediately after the Revolution”, in M. Buttino (ed.), In a Collapsing Empire: Underdevelopment, Ethnic Conflicts and Nationalisms in the Soviet Union (Milan, 1993), 257–277.

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to good effect to beat back at the ulama. They used the power of the ­Tashkent soviet to shut down the ulama’s organizations and to confiscate their properties. The ulama had ended up the big losers in the revolution. The entry of the Jadids into Soviet organs  – and the Soviets’ recruitment of indigenous cadres  – was also a large breach in any lines there might have been that separated the Muslim community of Central Asia from “the outside”. That the Jadids were attracted to the new order was not surprising. The revolution held a great deal of promise: of inclusion, equality, and of rapid modernization. It also, perhaps, showed a new modality of change, in which the institutions of a modernizing state could be used to bring about the sort of change that the Jadids had long exhorted their compatriots to undertake and in which they had been rebuffed in 1917. Opposition from the bulk of their own society since February 1917 had only radicalized the Jadids. If the nation refused to listen to their admonitions, then it had to be dragged into modern life, kicking and screaming if necessary. Here, too, the radicalism of the Bolsheviks, even if only vaguely understood, was appealing. The years right after 1917 were characterized by enormous cultural radicalization among the Muslim intelligentsias of the former Russian Empire. In Turkestan, this was very much driven by the conflict with the ulama that erupted in 1917. Over the following years, it drove the Jadids to a harsh critique of the ulama for being enemies of the nation, of progress, of the people – and indeed, of being “the sellers of religion” (dinfurushlar) for their own particular goals. The U ­ zbek-language press, reorganized under Soviet auspices from 1918 on, featured stories harshly critical of the ulama and of the customary practices they defended. Newspapers denounced eshons (Sufi masters) and other religious figures for various misdeeds, naming names and making public demands for punishment and retribution. This was a strident form of Muslim anticlericalism. The harshness of the criticism escalated over the years. A major landmark in this respect was the establishment of a Soviet satirical press in 1923, by far the most important of which was the Tashkent magazine called Mushtum (The Fist). It featured brutal satire on all aspects of society – its backwardness, its unwillingness to listen to ideas of progress and change. It satirized all manner of things  – corruption in government offices, lack of public hygiene, drunkenness – and it brutally lampooned the ulama, both in text and in cartoon form. Stories, fictional or otherwise, poked merciless fun at the ulama, accusing them of duplicity, gluttony, stupidity, or ignorance. But it was the cartoons that were really important as carriers of anticlericalism, for they were much more widely accessible to an audience that was largely illiterate. Printed in large format in bright, if crude colors, these cartoons could be pulled out and used as posters. It became possible, as never before, to see the ulama caricatured and ridiculed in unprecedented ways. The cultural capital and the authority of the ulama lay to a great extent in their dignity and decorum of gesture, posture, and dress. The

136  Adeeb Khalid cartoons in Mushtum presented the ulama in quite the opposite fashion. They were shown in compromising positions with their faces contorted with greed or lust; being lashed by angry peasants who had seen through their fakery; or with animal features added on to their bodies. The mockery of the ulama was an important part of the assault on their authority. The most important context for the appearance of Mushtum was, of course, Soviet. It was the Turkestani counterpart of Krokodil (Crocodile), the illustrated satirical magazine that began publishing in Moscow in the same year. The two magazines (and many others throughout the Soviet state) had much in common in terms of tone and content. But Mushtum also had a second line of descent going back to the pre-revolutionary Azerbaijani magazine Molla N ­ asreddin, which had first introduced cartoons into the Muslim press of the Russian Empire. Named after Molla Nasreddin, a comic figure from the Turko-Persian tradition, the magazine had its own anticlerical moments, and it routinely poked fun at traditionalist ulama whom it accused of sloth and ignorance or of actively lending a hand in the destruction of Islam and nation. This points to a longer-term trajectory of anticlericalism that had appeared in pre-revolutionary Jadid letters. Abdurauf Fitrat, a major Jadid figure, had used a fictional Indian Muslim traveler to say the following in 1913 to his hosts in Bukhara: The activities of your self-proclaimed ulama are the reason for the extinction of your nation. But there’s no need to grieve, brother, since your ulama aren’t the only ones like this. The fact is, ulama all over the Muslim world in the last three centuries have committed similar crimes.22

The difference in Mushtum was the intensity of the attack on the ulama. Indeed, in Mushtum’s criticism of the ulama, there is constant slippage between criticism of the ulama on Islamic grounds and their criticism on class or political grounds, and indeed, often it is impossible to draw a line between the two. We unfortunately do not know very much about the artists who worked for Mushtum – some of them were undoubtedly Russians and there are numerous examples of “Christian” influences in the art presented there. But Mushtum’s editor was Abdulla Qodiriy, a prominent Jadid and the founding father of prose fiction in Uzbek – his O’tkan kunlar (Bygone Days), published in 1926, is widely considered the finest novel ever written in Uzbek. More relevantly, he was a man of solid Islamic credentials. He had studied at the Beglarbegi madrasa (Muslim school) in Tashkent, knew not just Turkic and Persian, but also Arabic, which he used to follow both the modern secular work being produced in Arabic as well as religious literature. We have reports of Qodiriy taking regular part in various discussion groups among the ulama of Tashkent after the revolution – at the same time as he edited Mushtum and contributed copiously to it. Evidently, he 22 Fitrat, A., Bayonoti sayyohi hindî (Istanbul, 1911), 34–35, 40.

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did not see his activity at Mushtum as existing outside the bounds of “Islam”, for he never renounced Islam. He was arrested in 1937 during the major purge of the Uzbek cultural and political elite. During the months of interrogation, he told his prosecutor, “I am a reformist, a proponent of renewal. In Islam, I only recognize faith in God the Munificent as the highest reality. As for the other innovations, most of them I consider to be the work of Muslim clerics”.23 Qodiriy’s was an Islamic critique of the ulama. Fitrat used an Islamicate language not just to poke fun at the ulama but to question the very premises of ­Islam. In a cycle of three works of fiction written in 1923 and 1924, Fitrat took his anticlericalism to full-blown irreligion. In Qiyomat (Day of Judgment), ­Fitrat retells the Islamic story of resurrection and the final judgment in the voice of an opium addict called Pochomir. Pochomir is a buffoon in the style of Molla Nasreddin, who through his artlessness casts a sarcastic light on all that is holy. Through a combination of disdain and cunning, he jumps through all the hoops and gets admitted to paradise, only to find it tediously boring and not worth the effort.24 In a different work, Fitrat retold the story of Satan’s rebellion against God (when Satan refuses God’s command to bow in front of Adam) as  a heroic tale of rebellion against tyranny.25 In a third piece called Bedil, Fitrat used the Indian poet Bedil’s works to argue for radical doubt.26 Taken together, these three plays provide a clear statement of irreligion, all cast entirely in an Islamicate idiom.27 Fitrat’s irreligion had nothing to do with Soviet atheism, which in fact had not yet arrived in Central Asia, but was rather rooted in debates within Muslim societies that had a pre-revolutionary provenance, but had been radicalized by the conflicts since 1917. It was only in the late 1920s that a younger cohort of writers and poets began to produce antireligious literature in a Soviet vein, with its invocation of science, exploitation, and labor. 23 Boqiy, N., “Qatlnoma: hujjatli qissa”, Sharq yulduzi 5 (1991), 80. 24 Fitrat, A., Qiyomat: xayoliy hikoya (Moscow, 1923). 25 Fitrat, A., Shaytonning tangriga isyoni (Tashkent, 1924). 26 Fitrat, A., Bedil: bir majlisda (Moscow, 1924). 27 I should note that these texts have often been read simply as veiled criticisms of the Soviet order, their antireligious content explained away as simply  a smokescreen to dodge the censors. See Allworth, E., Evading Reality: The Devices of ‘Abdalrauf Fitrat, Modern Central Asian Reformist (Leiden, 2002), where Allworth provides facsimiles of these texts as well as his (somewhat problematic)  translations into English. Allworth’s analysis does not take the cultural radicalism of the period sufficiently into account. I agree with other scholars who argue that the antireligious message is central to the texts and cannot be so simply explained away; see Kleinmichel, S., Aufbruch aus orientalischen Dichtungstraditionen: Studien zur usbekischen Dramatik und Prosa zwischen 1910 und 1934 (Wiesbaden, 1993), 114–118; idem., “The Uzbek Short Story Writer Fitrat’s Adaptation of Religious Traditions”, in G. Abramson/H. Kilpatrick (ed.), Religious Perspectives in Modern Muslim and Jewish Literatures (London 2006), 135–148, on pp. 138–139; Baldauf, I., “Abdurauf Fitrat: Der Aufstand Satans gegen Gott”, in I. Baldauf/K. Kreiser/S. Tezcan (ed.), Türkische Sprachen und Literaturen: Materialen der ersten deutschen Turkologen-Konferenz (Wiesbaden, 1991), 39–74.

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The Nation To be sure, the anticlericalism, let alone the atheism, remained marginal phenomena in Central Asia in the decades after the revolution, motivating a small number of radicalized urban intellectuals. The force of the new regime was with them, however, for unlike the Tsarist regime with its tolerance of religion (and an ethos that saw religion as necessary for order and public morality), the Soviets had little use for it. Combined with the conflicts between and among Muslim societies, the new cultural radicalism embodied by the anticlericalism spoke of the way in which the meaning of being Muslim had shifted in the era of the Russian Revolution. We need to take account of one further transformation. If progress was the greatest hope for the Jadids before 1917, it had become increasingly tied to the nation. The nation for the Jadids – as for so many others at the time – was the sine qua non of unity, solidarity, consciousness, and self-awareness. Progress and nation were dialectically linked: one was unachievable without the other. The nation (millat) had made its appearance in Jadid thought before the revolution, when the nation was most often imagined as encompassing “the Muslims of Turkestan”. But discourses of ethnic nationalism, more precisely of Turkism, had also arrived in Central Asia and these burst forth in full flood in 1917. All through that year, Jadid writers evoked Chinggis, Temur, and Ulugh-bek. Nowhere is this clearer than in the writings of Fitrat, who wrote a regular column in Hurriyat after becoming its editor in August 1917. In July, he wrote: “O great Turan, the land of lions! What happened to you? What bad days have you fallen into? What happened to the brave Turks who once ruled the world? Why did they pass? Why did they go away?”28 This nationalism was rooted in the land (Turan, i. e., Turkestan) and the ethnicity of its people, and channelled through the seminal figure of Temur (Tamerlane), the conqueror who built an empire from Central Asia. Over the next few years, this vision of the nation coalesced under the label “Uzbek” and provided the historical underpinning for the Uzbek republic created in the 1924 national-territorial delimitation of Central Asia.

Conclusion The many Muslim communities of the Russian Empire varied enormously amongst themselves. The category of “the Muslims of the Russian Empire” has little explanatory power in itself. Political action in the name of this category sel 28 Fitrat, A., “Yurt qayg’usi,” Hurriyat, July 28, 1917.

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dom succeeded. Nor was “Islam” a stable or uncontested label. Islamic identity always coexisted with local or regional designations rooted in a given society’s past. Indeed, as I have shown in this article, some of the most significant conflicts within Muslim societies took place over Islam itself. The era of the Russian Revolution brought unprecedented upheaval that produced, among other things, cultural radicalism in which community was imagined in new ways. Islam came under attack both as a source of moral values and a marker of identity, while the intellectuals’ fascination with the nation found resonance in Soviet nationalities policies. Central Asia was nationalized. Yet it would be a mistake to think of Islam and the nation as mutually exclusive categories. The nation had a different emphasis but it was predicated on the assumption that “the Turks who once ruled the world” were by definition Muslim. For Fitrat and other activists, the Uzbek nation encompassed the entire sedentary Muslim population of Central Asia. It excluded historically nomadic groups such as the Turkmens or the Kazakhs as well as the historic community of Central Asian Jews, whose way of life was in most ways (other than that of religion) indistinguishable from that of their Muslim neighbors. Islam thus remained a marker of communal identity, but in a particular way that was shaped by historical contingency and a multitude of other influences.

Bibliography Agzamkhodzhaev, S., Istoriia Turkestanskoi avtonomii (Turkiston Muxtoriayti) (Tashkent, 2006). Allworth, E., Evading Reality: The Devices of ‘Abdalrauf Fitrat, Modern Central Asian Reformist (Leiden, 2002). Azamatov, D. D., Orenburgskoe magometanskoe dukhovnoe sobranie v kontse XVIII–XIX vv. (Ufa, 1999). Bademci, A., 1917–1934 Türkistan Millî İstiklâl Hareketi: Korbaşilar ve Enver Paşa (Istanbul, 2010 [orig. 1975]). Baldauf, I., “Abdurauf Fitrat: Der Aufstand Satans gegen Gott”, in I. Baldauf/K. Kreiser/ S.  Tezcan (ed.), Türkische Sprachen und Literaturen: Materialen der ersten deutschen Turkologen-Konferenz (Wiesbaden, 1991), 39–74. Bigi, M. J., Islahat esaslarï (Petrograd, 1915). Boqiy, N., “Qatlnoma: hujjatli qissa”, Sharq yulduzi 5 (1991), 33–84. Butun Rusya Müsülmanlarïnïng 1917nchi yilda 1–11 Mayda Mäskävdä bolghan umumi ­isyizdining protaqollarï (Petrograd, 1917). Buttino, M., La rivoluzione capovolta: l’Asia centrale tra il crollo dell’impero zarista  e la formazione dell’URSS (Naples, 2003). Buttino, M., “Politics and Social Conflict during a Famine: Turkestan immediately after the Revolution”, in M. Buttino (ed.), In a Collapsing Empire: Underdevelopment, Ethnic Conflicts and Nationalisms in the Soviet Union (Milan, 1993), 257–277. Caroe, O., Soviet Empire: The Turks of Central Asia and Stalinism (London, 1954). Castagné, J., Les Basmatchis: le mouvement national des indigènes d’Asie Centrale depuis la Révolution d’octobre 1917 jusqu’en octobre 1924 (Paris, 1925).

140  Adeeb Khalid Crews, R. D., For Prophet and Tsar: Islam and Empire in Russia and Central Asia (Cambridge, 2006). Fitrat, A., Bayonoti sayyohi hindî (Istanbul, 1911). Fitrat, A., Bedil: bir majlisda (Moscow, 1924). Fitrat, A., Qiyomat: xayoliy hikoya (Moscow, 1923). Fitrat, A., Shaytonning tangriga isyoni (Tashkent, 1924). Ginzburg, S., “Basmachestvo v Fergane”, in Ocherki revoliutsionnogo dvizheniia v Srednei Azii: Sbornik statei (Moscow, 1926). Hayit, B., Basmatschi: Nationaler Kampf Turkestans in den Jahren 1917 bis 1934 (Cologne, 1992). Iskhakov, S., Rossiiskie musul’mane i revoliutsiia 1917–1918 (Moscow, 2004). Khalid, A., “Russia, Central Asia and the Caucasus to 1917”, in The New Cambridge History of Islam 5 (Cambridge, 2010), 180–202. Khalid, A., The Politics of Muslim Cultural Reform: Jadidism in Central Asia (Berkeley, 1998). Khalid, A., “Turkestan v 1917–1922 godakh: bor’ba za vlast’ na okraine Rossii”, in G. N. Sevost’ianov (ed.), Tragediia velikoi derzhavy: natsional’nyi vopros i raspad Sovetskogo ­Soiuza (Moscow, 2005), 189–226. Kleinmichel, S., Aufbruch aus orientalischen Dichtungstraditionen: Studien zur usbekischen Dramatik und Prosa zwischen 1910 und 1934 (Wiesbaden, 1993). Kleinmichel, S., “The Uzbek Short Story Writer Fitrat’s Adaptation of Religious Traditions”, in G. Abramson/H. Kilpatrick (ed.), Religious Perspectives in Modern Muslim and Jewish Literatures (London, 2006), 135–148. Lorenz, R., “Economic Bases of the Basmachi Movement in the Farghana Valley”, in A. Kappeler/G. Simon/G. Brunner (ed.), Muslim Communities Reemerge: Historical Perspectives on Nationality, Politics, and Opposition in the Former Soviet Union and Yugoslavia (Durham, 1994), 277–303. Meyer, J. H.,“Turkic Worlds: Community Leadership and Collective Identity in the Russian and Ottoman Empires, 1870–1914”, PhD dissertation. (Brown University, 2007). Mukhetdinov, D. V. (ed.), Forumy rossiiskikh musul’man: na poroge novogo tysiacheletiia. Materialy Vserossiiskoi nauchno-prakticheskoi konferentsii k 100-letiiu provedeniia I Vserossiiskogo musul’manskogo s”ezda (1905–2005) (Nizhnii Novgorod, 2006). Rajabov, Q., Buxoroga Qizil Armiya bosqini va unga qarshi kurash (Tashkent, 2002). Sartori, P., “When a Mufti Turned Islamism into Political Pragmatism: Sadreddin-Khan and the Struggle for an Independent Turkestan”, Cahiers d’Asie centrale 15/16 (2007), 118–139. Sahadeo, J., Russian Colonial Society in Tashkent (Bloomington, 2007). Ulamo Jamiyati, Haqiqatg’a xilof torqatilgan xitobnomag’a javob va ham bayon-i ahvol (Tashkent, 1917). Usmanova, D., Musul’manskaia fraktsiia i problemy “svobody sovesti” v Gosudarsvennoi Dume Rossii, 1906–1917 (Kazan, 1999). Usmanova, D., Musul’manskie predstaviteli v rossiiskom parlamente: 1906–1916 (Kazan, 2005). Zenkovsky, S. A., Pan-Turkism and Islam in Russia (Cambridge, 1960). Ziyoyeva, D. H., Tukiston milliy ozodlik harakati (Mustabid tuzumga qarshi 1916 yil va 1918–1924 yillaridagi xalq kurashlari tarixshunosligi) (Tashkent, 2000).

Newspapers and Periodicals Kengash Hurriyat Turkiston Turon Ulug’ Turkiston

David Shneer

Documenting the Ambivalent Empire: Soviet Jewish Photographers and the Far East

Vladimir Lenin, head of the Bolshevik Party, and Anatoly Lunacharsky, who ran the Commissariat of Enlightenment, recognized the power of images and the modern media to transform people and society. They gave photography and film the pride of place in Soviet culture. Photography came to tsarist Russia in the midnineteenth century, and from its earliest days, was used as an aesthetic tool for documenting the diversity of the tsarist empire. Many of the early leaders of Russian imperial and then Soviet photography were Jewish, especially after the Great War and the February Revolution opened the doors wide open for Jews to come to the capitals of photography, first in Petrograd and then in Moscow. Like the story of Hollywood being built by immigrant Jews from Europe and New York, Soviet photography from the 1920s to the 1950s was largely driven by a group of entrepreneurial young Jews, nearly all men, who took advantage of new, portable media to build careers for themselves and to document the unfolding of what, for many of them, was one of the grandest experiments in history. I will focus on two Soviet photojournalists. Both of them were Jewish and belonged to the first generation of Soviet photojournalists who defined the profession.1 In that role, they were tasked with photographing the diversity of the Soviet Union, an “affirmative action empire” that used photography to celebrate Communism’s ethnic and national diversity and to elevate ethnic minorities whose cultures had previously been persecuted as a result of Russification under tsarist rule. As photojournalists, they were documenting the building of Communism in the farthest reaches of the country. On the one hand, they were European documenters from Moscow, the Communist metropole, going to the peripheries to capture images of “the Other” in the East. At the same time, their images of one of the farthest places east, Birobidzhan, which was named the Jewish Autonomous Region (JAR) in 1934, reveals an ambivalence regarding their position in the Communist project as colonizer, colonized, and classically diasporic all at once. Georgy Zelmanovitch, an Ashkenazi Jew born in 1906 in Tashkent, Uzbekistan, began photographing his local Uzbek surroundings and publishing his work in 1 For more on the early generations of Soviet photojournalists, see Shneer, D., Through Soviet Jewish Eyes: Photography, War, and the Holocaust (New Brunswick, 2011), chapter 2.

142  David Shneer regional newspapers. Senior photographers in Moscow heard of this brilliant imagemaker, and at the age 20, in 1926, he moved to Moscow.2 In the 1920s and 1930s, Zelmanovitch went back and forth between Soviet Central Asia and Moscow, and with each assignment gained new fame as both an up-and-coming Constructivist photographer who worked with such well-known artists as El Lissitsky, and as a documenter of the “Sovietization” of Uzbekistan. In 1923, an 18-year-old photographer named Semyon Fridlyand moved to Moscow, the capital of the emerging Communist country that would become the Soviet Union in 1924, from his war-torn home of Kiev, searching for work and a new life. He ended up on the doorstep of his older cousin, Mikhail Koltsov (born Mikhail Fridlyand), kingpin of Soviet photojournalism and founder in 1923 of Ogonek (The Little Flame), the country’s popular illustrated magazine that preceded its American equivalent, Life, by 13 years. He too began photographing his local surroundings, and his images ended up on the cover of the magazine. Zelmanovitch, Fridlyand, and a host of other young photojournalists, many of whom were Jewish, like their mentors Max Alpert, Arkady Shaykhet, and Mark Markov-Grinberg, began developing what would eventually become Soviet photojournalism. Soviet photographers used their cameras to document, envision, and elevate the building of Soviet society by showing off the Soviet Union’s ethnic diversity, making icons out of lowly workers, and picturing agricultural labor as something beautiful. Both Zelmanovitch and Fridlyand used the aesthetics of Constructivism and the ideology of socialist realism to photograph major moments in Soviet history, from industrialization and collectivization to the building of a Soviet Union that stretched from the Pacific to the Baltic, and from the Arctic to the Black Sea. Soviet photographers were charged not just with documenting the geographic expanse of the Soviet Union and its majestic mountains and vast taiga. They were also responsible for the politically and ideologically central task of highlighting the ethnic and human diversity of the Soviet Union. Zelmanovitch and Fridlyand were two of, if not the, most important photographers of that experiment, which some might call socialist imperial photography. Traditional models of explaining imperial photography – of the photographer from the metropole (in this case Moscow) going “East” to photograph “the Other” in both his and her “native habitat” and being improved through civilization or heralded as a noble savage – do not satisfactorily explain Soviet photography in its ethnic and national diversity. British, French, and German imperial photography as well as other forms of image making emphasized the distance between photogra 2 Max Penson, another Soviet Jewish photographer who, unlike Zelma, did not move to the Soviet capital, also built his career photographing Central Asia. See Sviblova, O., “Introduction,” Max Penson: Classic Soviet Modernist Photographer Max Penson and the ­Soviet Modernisation of Uzbekistan 1920–1930s (Moscow, 2006).

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pher and photographic subject and between the subject and his or her reader. It was also a means for the metropole to dominate the colony.3 As Jewish photographers of the first socialist empire, Zelmanovitch and Fridlyand had no choice but to struggle with the fact of racial and ethnic difference in the Soviet Union. They played with that distance to show how sameness and difference co-existed. Although the subjects may look different in terms of skin color, dress, and culture, they were all part of the “brotherhood of nations” that defined Soviet policy as it wrestled ambivalently with what it meant to be the first socialist country in the world. In the framework of race politics, which dominated the globe in the 1920s and 1930s, especially as Nazi Germany rose to power, historian Francine Hirsch has convincingly shown that, “Although the Soviet Union practiced politics of discrimination and exclusion, it did not practice what contemporaries thought of as ‘racial politics’”.4 In 1932, Ogonek sent Zelmanovitch to Birobidzhan, a region of the Far East along the Manchurian border, two years before the Soviet state elevated its status to that of “Jewish Autonomous Region”.5 Given his knowledge and photographic record of Uzbekistan and Central Asia, Zelmanovitch became well known in Moscow as a specialist in photographs of the Soviet East taken through an avantgarde, Constructivist lens.6 His photographs of 1920s Uzbekistan reveal a highly skilled yet minimally trained photographer who pictures native Uzbeks, Tadzhiks, and others at raking angles and stark close-ups. In  a picture taken in the 1920s, Zelmanovitch photographs a drummer of native origin, perhaps Kalmyk, incredibly close up and from below. The photographer positions himself at the drummer’s feet, kneeling down to capture the drama of a man poised to strike the drum. Shooting from below and close up became the dominant aesthetic in the Soviet 1930s, as Zelmanovitch helped define what Soviet photographic aesthetics would look like. 3 See, among others, Jay, M./Ramaswany, S.  (ed.), Empires of Vision: A Reader (Durham, 2014). In particular, see David Ciarlo’s essay, “Advertising and the Optics of Colonial Power” as well as James Hevia’s, “The Photography Complex: Exposing Boxer-Era China (1900–1901), Making Civilization.” 4 On the ambivalence of ethnic, national, and racial difference in the Soviet Union, see Hirsch, F., “Race Without the Practice of Racial Politics,” Slavic Review 61:1 (Spring 2002), 30–43. 5 On the history of Birobidzhan, see Weinberg, R., Stalin’s Forgotten Zion: Birobidzhan and the Making of a Soviet Jewish Homeland (Berkeley, 1998) and Kuchenbecker, A., Zionismus ohne Zion: Birobidzhan: Idee und Geschichte eines jüdischen Staates in Sowjet-Fernost (Berlin, 2000). 6 The other well-known Soviet Jewish Uzbekistan-based photographer was Max P ­ enson, who, unlike Zelma, never moved to Moscow and remained relatively marginal from the ­Soviet photographic community. See Galeyev, I./Penson, M., Max Penson: Soviet AvantGarde Photographer (Stuttgart, 2011).

144  David Shneer

Figure 1. Georgy Zelmanovitch, “Man Listening to The Voice of Moscow”, 1925. Courtesy of Michael Mattis and the Georgy Zelma Archive.

In this photograph, the drummer is heroic, elevated, and looking straight ahead instead of at the photographer, who elevates him to a status of noble dignity.7 In a different 1920s photograph called simply “Craftsmen, Tubinsk”, the latter a location in Soviet Central Asia, Zelmanovitch adopts a radically different but also canonical socialist realist posture. Shooting from above, he captures two men, their heads covered in traditional Central Asia skullcaps known as tubiteikas, as they carefully and lovingly craft pots for possible use or sale. In much of his photography from Central Asia, Zelmanovitch photographs and elevates Central

7 Georgy Zelmanovitch, “Drummer,” 1920s, http://lumieregallery.net/themes_wp/2013_ 10_WC_Asia_ce3/ (accessed April 19, 2014).

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Figure 2. Georgy Zelmanovitch, “At the Reading”, 1926. Courtesy of Michael Mattis and the Georgy Zelma Archive. Photo editing by Nephi Niven.

Asian masculinity, whether demonstrated in the strong pounding of the drum, the careful crafting of pots, or in his many photographs of muscular acrobats. Alongside these images of Central Asian masculinity, Zelmanovitch also documents the modernization that came to these places via socialism. His photographs frequently show village elders experimenting with modern technology. In Figure 1, the man on the left is dressed in traditional male fashion, again with head covered. But on top of his tubiteika sits evidence of modernization – a headset through which he is listening to a broadcast of The Voice of Moscow. In Figure 2, which almost appears oxymoronic in the tension between textile tradition and mass media, a young ethnic woman with head covered and a shawl embracing her body reads a newspaper to three older men, each in traditional clothing. This 1926 photograph visually marks the affirmative action empire or “nativization”, as the 1924 nationalities policies were officially called, since the newspaper she is reading, is a local version of Pravda, written in Latin letters. It also denotes the generational and gender politics of Sovietization as the youth and women were frequently the bearers of modernity in patriarchical societies. Even more out of place is Figure 3 (see page 146), a Zelmanovitch photograph of  a young boy, likely from Kirghizia, photographed slightly from below. Surrounded by  a majestic landscape, he rides  a horse or mule with  a cat perched calmly in a front basket. He has a copy of a book by Aleksander Pushkin in his

146  David Shneer

Figure 3. Georgy Zelma, “Boy Reading Pushkin, 1930s”. Courtesy of Michael Mattis and the Georgy Zelma Archive. Photo editing by Nephi Niven.

hand translated into the boy’s native language.8 It is hard to imagine a more idealized image of the fusion between native rootedness and Communist modernity.9 In 1932, the same year he landed a plum job photographing for USSR in Construction, Ogonek gave Zelmanovitch the assignment to photograph a small outpost of the Soviet Union, the budding Jewish autonomous region in the Far East (Dal’nevostochnyi krai), whose establishment was supposed to provide Jews  a territorial home to incubate a Soviet Jewish nation with Yiddish, Soviet Jewry’s official native language, as its state language. Government population planners 8 On Zelma’s Central Asia photography, see Zelma, G., “Photography Demonstration, Central Asia,” in Ben-David Val, L., (ed.), Propaganda and Dreams (Zurich/New York, 1999), 110 or Zelma, G., “The Voice of Moscow, Uzbekistan,” in S. Goodman Tumarkin (ed.), Russian Jewish Artists in a Century of Change (Munich/New York, 1995), 244. All empires used photography as a means of naturalizing colonial rule and of “knowing” the colonized other. See for example Maxwell, A., Colonial Photography and Exhibitions: Representations of the Native and the Making of European Identities (Leicester, 2000) and Ryan, J. R., Picturing Empire: Photography and the Visualization of the British Empire (Chicago, 1998). 9 For more on Zelma’s 1920s and 1930s photographs, see Shneer, Through Soviet Jewish Eyes.

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also intended to build up the sparsely populated border that separated the Soviet Union from potentially hostile forces in Asia. The very idea of the creation of a Jewish homeland as a form of “settler colonialism” was not new.10 As the scholar Adam Rovner has shown, the Birobidzhan project of settling “empty land” by establishing agricultural colonies to turn Jews into productive citizens fits into a long line of modern Jewish resettlement projects, often broadly referred to as “territorialism”.11 The specific idea of establishing  a Jewish homeland in the Russian Far East was also not new. The writer and leading exponent of Jewish territorialism, Israel Zangwill, supported the creation of a Jewish enclave somewhere in the vast lands of Siberia, not far from where the JAR was later established. In his capacity as president of the Jewish Territorial Organization (Idishe territorialishe organizastie), Zangwill suggested as early as 1915, in the middle of World War I, that “the Jews, instead of being cooped up in stinking poverty in the towns of the Pale, should…be invited to carve out  a province with the ploughshare from these vast neglected [­ Siberian] territories”.12 Two years later, in the wake of the Revolution, he voiced the opinion that a Jewish State might arise in a free “United States of Russia”. He identified Siberia – the “mighty land of the future” – as the most promising ­locale for Jewish self-government.13 His early enthusiasm for a Jewish State in Siberia later led Joseph Leftwich, head of the British Freeland League, to proclaim Zangwill a prophet of Birobidzhan.14 In 1924, the Central Executive Committee of the Soviet state established KOMZET (Committee for the Settlement of Jewish Toilers on the Land)  and OZET (Society for the Settlement of Jewish Toilers on the Land), two statesponsored organizations devoted to encouraging Jewish settlement in agricultural colonies.15 Like other Jewish territorialist projects, the land in the Far East between the Bira and Bidzhan rivers was surveyed by state planners, agromonists, and others as they sought to determine whether the land could be made agriculturally viable for an ever-increasing Jewish population with few skills in 10 I have very intentionally put the phrase “settler colonialism” in quotes to highlight how one could perceive the historic movement of European Jews to Asia, Africa, and Latin America as a form of settler colonialism. In fact, the phenomenon is much more complicated. For more on the idea of settler colonialism, see Verancini, L., Settler Colonialism: A Theoretical Overview (Basingstoke, 2011). 11 Rovner, A., In the Shadow of Zion: Promised Lands Before Israel (New York, 2014). 12 Israel Zangwill, “Siberia as a Jewish State,” The Jewish World [London], August 8, 1917, 13 as cited in Rovner, In the Shadow of Zion, chapter 4. 13 Israel Zangwill, “Rosy Russia,” The War for the World (New York, 1916), 275–282. 14 Joseph Leftwich, Israel Zangwill (New York, 1957), 161 as cited in Rovner, In the Shadow of Zion, chapter 4. 15 On paper, KOMZET was an official state institution, while OZET was a “society,” and thus technically independent of the state. The institutions had many members in common and had very similar goals.

148  David Shneer working the land.16 Once the Soviet government, and in particular ­Joseph S­ talin, secretary general of the Communist Party, made the decision to settle European, former Pale-of-Settlement dwelling Jews in the Soviet Far East, a full-scale propaganda campaign commenced with the goal of encouraging Jews to migrate. Zelmanovitch’s photographs were part of that campaign. He was to document Soviet Jews’ process of relocating thousands of miles to become a modern Soviet nation in this petri dish of Soviet nationalities, which Terry Martin has referred to as the “affirmative action empire”. He calls it that to suggest, rather provocatively, that in the 1920s and early 1930s, the Soviet Union aimed to undo the pernicious effects of tsarist Russificatory policies by developing and elevating the country’s many ethnic minorities, Jews included.17 Photographing this part of the Soviet Far East was unlike any assignment Zelmanovitch had ever received. He was not travelling east to document the socialist uplift of the local “backward” population and simultaneously celebrate its native culture. His photographic project resembled Zionist photography of the 1930s more than his other Uzbek, Tadzhik, or Kirghiz images.18 Birobidzhan involved the transportation of a European population thousands of miles to settle “empty land” in order to be transformed and uplifted themselves, echoing the European imperial-supported Jewish national movement of Zionism, which encouraged the settlement of European Jews in “empty” parts of Ottoman and then British Palestine. Zelmanovitch’s archive shows only faint traces of his visit to the region in 1932. The top archival envelope in Figure 4 with a control print shows two women maneuvering farm equipment adorned with a banner proclaiming, “Proletariat of the World, Unite”. The label tells us where Zelmanovitch ended up, namely in Amurzet, the Amur River Jewish Agricultural Cooperative, founded in 1929 by Jewish migrants and located in Birobidzhan’s “October Region”. Beneath the Amur­zet archival envelope, we find a single envelope with three negatives all labeled “Children of Birobidzhan, Far Eastern Region”. This archival glimpse at the photographer’s craft shows how he imagined his role in documenting Jews in the Soviet Far East. The three negatives are of the same image, but Zelmanovitch has marked the second one as the one he prefers with a small “x” in the upper left corner. In this one, no child’s head is cut off, and each person is clearly visible, unlike negatives 1 and 3, which picture cut off heads or one figure blocking out another. 16 See Viliams, V. R., (ed.), Birsko-bidzhanskii raion dal’ne vostochnogo kraia: trudy ekspeditsii 1927 goda, predvaritel’nyi svodnyi otchet ekspeditsii (Birsko-Bidzhan Area of the Far Eastern Region: The Work of the 1927 Expedition. A Preliminary Report) (Moscow, 1928), 9. The 1927 expedition report mentions several prior reports – one in 1925 “whose research covered nearly the same area” as the 1927 expedition’s; and two more in 1926. 17 Martin, T., The Affirmative Action Empire: Nations and Nationalism in the Soviet Union, 1923–1939 (Cornell, 2001). 18 For more on Zionist photography of pre-state Palestine, see for example Bar-Gal, Y., Propaganda and Zionist Education: The Jewish National Fund, 1924–1947 (Rochester, 2003).

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Figure 4. Georgy Zelma, Two Archival Envelopes, Georgy Zelma Archive. Top: Amurzet, Birobidzhan, Far Eastern Region, 1932. Bottom: Children of Birobidzhan, Far Eastern Region, 1932.

150  David Shneer More interesting, however, is the angle from which he has shot the children: even the shortest child is shot from far below. The children stare off into the distance, as if there were a second photographer at the scene photographing them from straight on. Whether or not there was a second photographer is less important than Zelmanovitch’s choice to get as low as possible in front of the children and have them gaze off into a distant, presumably hopeful, future. This almost cliché image of children shot from below in classic socialist realist style echoes his earlier photograph of the drummer, albeit here without the close-up, as Zel­ manovitch laid the ground for photographic socialist realism. The final two archival envelopes from Birobidzhan give no specific location, aside from the most generic administrative designation (Figure 5). In both, Zelmanovitch has photographed the remaking of nature by human hands. In the top, a man works a primitive-looking horse-drawn plow. Below, we see a shot of a bridgein-the-making spanning a river, perhaps the Amur. There are no people present – just the reflection of the construction site in the majestic river. Apart from these four archival envelopes, Zelmanovitch’s archive has no other revelations about his journey to the Soviet Far East to bear witness to the Soviet Jewish nation. Ogonek published two Zelmanovitch photographs in the first major illustrated essay about Birobidzhan, called “Birobidzhan, The Jewish Autonomous Region,” which appeared on June 5, 1934, immediately after its elevation to the status of Jewish Autonomous Region. Viktor Fink wrote the text; Zelmanovitch took the photographs. Fink describes the building of combines, the expansion of collective farms, and the general industrialization and agricultural development of this distant region of the Soviet empire. Zelmanovitch’s photographs, which I could find neither in his private archive nor in the Ogonek archive, celebrate the people doing the building. The first photograph, “Leveling Streets in Birobidzhan”, shows two anonymous men working a primitive machine on a newly built street in Birobidzhan. The driver’s pose resembles several famous photographs of workers involved in industrial work. Zelmanovitch’s street leveler mounts the machine and wrestles with the wheel to power the leveler. The image of the hypermasculine worker was common in the context of modernist, constructivist aesthetics, which glorified the male worker’s body. But unlike modernist close-ups of the human body that treated it like a machine, Zelmanovitch backs up to reveal the distinctly underdeveloped conditions in which the leveler driver works. Lonely log houses, a workers’ brigade tramping down the street in the left of the photograph – all these contextualizing details could have been left out had Zelmanovitch closed in on the worker or if the editor had cropped the image. As  a Soviet photojournalist photographing the future Soviet Jewish homeland, Zelmanovitch’s photographs had to define two seemingly contradictory stories, one imagining an idealized built socialism, the other the process of its building. On the one hand, the photos were supposed to attract people to

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Figure 5. Georgy Zelma, Two Archival Envelopes, Georgy Zelma Archive, Scarsdale, New York. Top: Dal’nevostochnyi krai (Far Eastern Region), 1932. Bottom: Birobidzhan, Dal’nevostochnyi krai (Far Eastern Region), 1932.

152  David Shneer ­ irobidzhan as the government was attempting to increase migration to the B region in order to settle it and thereby modernize it. Zelmanovitch’s images needed to appeal to the reader, as did most socialist realist photography. At the same time, he was also showing how Jews could “tame the taiga”, and, in an echo of the Zionist ideology of building the land and thereby “being built” by it (livnot u-lehivanot), overcome harsh conditions as a means of self-transformation. In this way, his work resembles that from the 1920s showing the effects of the harsh living conditions on the emerging agricultural colonies. In the second photograph, Zelmanovitch humanizes Birobidzhan and highlights its Jewishness. “Leah Feldman’s Garden Brigade of the Valdheim Collective Farm” shows smiling women and children preparing for work with their hoes. Unlike the more ambiguous photo of the levelers, this image reflects the aesthetic of socialist realism that celebrated and sanitized labor. Zelmanovitch chose to photograph the subjects in a rare state of cleanliness, presumably on their way to work, although even then, bathing regularly was a luxury on these start up collective farms. Their smiles are awfully broad for people headed to work. The first photograph was about the power of male labor and the dynamic tension between struggle and celebration. This photograph shows women’s and children’s contributions to building Birobidzhan, and explicitly marks the workers as Jewish by naming the brigade leader “Feldman” (“man of the field” in Yiddish) and the collective farm “Valdheim” (“home in the forest”). Zelmanovitch built his early career on photographs of the Soviet “Other”, the “backward” peoples being “modernized” thanks to Soviet rule, an approach to photography he continued through the 1930s. However, his few Birobidzhan photographs do not show local “Birobidzhanis”, whether Koreans or Cossacks, being uplifted by people from the metropole. The six extant Zel­manovitch photographs, in fact, show no metropole-colonial human interactions at all, just humans (in this case Soviet Jews) conquering the land or posing for the camera. In Zelmanovitch’s Birobidzhan, Jews did in fact encounter empty land. We also do not see images of backward Jews becoming modern via the radio, newspapers, or other new forms of technology. (In fact, Zelmanovitch is the one using modern technology.) Zelmanovitch could have portrayed traditional Jews discovering modernity with an image of a heavily bearded man or headcovered Jewish woman learning to drive a tractor, like he did with his photographs of Uzbeks, Tadzhiks, and others. The Amurzet image of two stoic women could have displayed their sense of wonder at the new technology with which they were engaged. But even though we are as far east geographically, there are no traditional “Ostjuden”, no reified images of eastern European Jewish authenticity in the faces of Birobidzhan’s Jews.19 Instead he followed, and prob 19 See Benton, M., Shuttered Memories of a Vanishing World: The Deliberate Photography of Roman Vishniac, Ph.D. diss., Courtauld Institute of Art, London, forthcoming.

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ably helped create, the particular visual trope of Jews becoming peasants, and with the power of photography, showed how Jews looked like the Soviet everyman. His Birobidzhan photography complicates the strict division between us and them, between East and West. His images of the Jewish Far East show how Soviet Jews, both the ones in front of and behind the camera, worked at the intersections of difference and sameness, and how a photographer could visually represent that very narrow place.

Semyon Fridlyand’s Birobidzhan and Jews’ Encounters with “Native” Inhabitants In the same year that Ogonek published its illustrated essay, the magazine Nashi Dostizheniia (Our Achievements) sent Fridlyand to the JAR , which, according to official rhetoric, would turn Jews from unproductive small-town (shtetl) traders into manual-laboring members of the Soviet-Jewish nation.20 Fridlyand had some experience as an “affirmative action empire” photographer, although he was not as well known for it as Zelmanovitch. But he had blat, important connections, since his cousin Koltsov had become the most important figure in Soviet photography by the early 1930s. Fridlyand began and ended his career working for Ogonek. In 1930 he became a Soviet cultural ambassador when he was one of three photographers to exhibit his work in the “Ogonek ­Exhibition”, the first Soviet photography exhibition to travel abroad.21 In September 1934, three months after the Fink-Zelmanovitch Ogonek essay appeared, Fridlyand’s name appeared in the byline of both an article and photograph in Pravda, the Communist Party’s central newspaper, extolling the mechanization of gold extraction in the Soviet Far East.22 On December 19, an entire page of the newspaper celebrating Birobidzhan featured articles by Matvei Khavkin and Yosef Liberberg, heads of Birobidzhan’s Communist Party and Soviet state apparatus, respectively, as well as an essay by Soviet Korean leader Afanasii Kim.23 Bylines of other authors extolling the virtues of socialism included “Pushner”, a student at the Jewish Teachers’ School in Birobidzhan, and Fu Man-Zhu, a Chinese schoolgirl in Vladivastok. 20 Dekel-Chen, J., Farming the Red Land: Jewish Agricultural Colonization and Local Soviet Power, 1924–1941 (New Haven, 2005); Shneer, D., Yiddish and the Creation of Soviet Jewish Culture (New York, 2004); Shternshis, A., Soviet and Kosher: Jewish Popular Culture in the Soviet Union, 1917–1941 (Bloomington, 2006). 21 Jenkins, R. (ed.), On the Road in the Soviet Empire: Semyon Fridlyand Photographs (Denver, 2008). 22 Fridlyand, S., “Zoloto na Sutari,” Pravda, September 14, 1934, 4. 23 Khavkin, M./Liberberg, I., “V bor’be za peredovuiu evreiskuiu oblast’,” Pravda December 19, 1934, 4.

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Figure 6.  Children’s Camp, Birafeld, Birobidzhan. Courtesy of the Dalbey Photographic Collection at the University of Denver. University Art Collections. University of Denver, Denver, Colorado. Photo editing by Nephi Niven.

Fridlyand appeared as part of Pravda’s 1934 celebration of Birobidzhan, with a single photograph, shot from above, called “Children’s Camp, Birafeld.” The photograph shows kindergartners in Birobidzhan napping in the early afternoon (True to form, the boy in the front center of the image has caught Fridlyand taking their picture!).24 The caption emphasizes the centrality of children to the building of socialism in Birobidzhan: “In the Jewish Autonomous Region, a whole array of industrial and residential development demands the construction of children’s institutions. In the picture: Nap time at a Birobidzhan kindergarten.” 24 The photograph appeared as the lead photograph on page 4 of the December 19, 1934, edition of Pravda, all of which was dedicated to Birobidzhan.

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Figure 7. Semyon Fridlyand, “T. Trotchik with His Sickle”. Courtesy of Dalbey Photographic Collection at the University of Denver. University Art Collections. University of Denver, Denver, Colorado. 

Fridlyand’s archive at the University of Denver holds several dozen Fridlyand images of Birobidzhan, including other versions of the Birobidzhan kindergarten. The Pravda photo editor published Fridlyand’s close-up of napping children, shot from above and arrayed symmetrically on cots. A second photograph of the same scene (Figure 6, although this time, a different boy in front looks at him) is shot from much higher above, as if Fridlyand photographed the children as he ascended a ladder or tower. This scene showing what happens on both sides of the fence, not visible in the published version, reveals a contrast of activities taking place in the kindergarten. As one group naps, the other engages in frenetic activity in a circle dance. Each group takes on a perfect symmetry when subjected to Fridlyand’s keen eye. The photograph reflects Fridlyand’s 1920s training in Constructivism as well as his ideological belief that photography had to elevate its subjects. It also highlights how photo editors determined the story using the photographer’s raw materials – in this case, the sleeping children. In June 1936, Nashi dostizheniia (Our Achievements) published  a celebratory article by David Khait about Birobidzhan, which was accompanied by nine Fridlyand images.25 Although T. Trotchik did not appear in that article, he appeared elsewhere, and this particular photograph, Figure 7, gives  a sense of 25 Khait, D., “Puteshestvie v Amurzet”, Nashi Dostizheniia 6 (1936), 61–78. Fridlyand sent eleven prints to the magazine, although only nine appeared in the published edition. See

156  David Shneer

Figure 8. Semyon Fridlyand, “Children in Birobidzhan”. Dalbey Photographic Collection at the University of Denver. University Art Collections. University of Denver, Denver, Colorado.  Published in Nashi Dostizheniie, no. 6 (1936): 61–78. Photoediting by Nephi Niven.

Fridlyand’s vision of Soviet socialism through photography. Shot from below, Trotchik smiles and looks away from the photographer, who has put Trotchik’s muscular forearms in the bottom center of the frame. Fridlyand’s close-up photograph of Jewish children living on  a communal farm in Birobidzhan (Figure 8) was the most widely published Birobidzhan photograph in the Soviet press, and shows how socialist realism shaped the image of the Soviet Union. The children smile away from the camera, gazing off into the distance as had become convention by 1934. Although socialist realist photography would eventually move this gaze above the horizon, we see in this 1934 photograph the shift away from a direct gaze at the camera. Like Zelmanovitch’s photograph of Jewish children in Birobidzhan, Fridlyand’s children do not conform to the image of either “the traditional Jew” or the “person from the East”. Even though Khait’s article talks about Jewish ritual slaughterers (shoykhtim) in Birobidzhan, Fridlyand’s archive holds no photographs of Jews in traditional clothing. If his subjects look Jewish, it is only at the most cursory phenotypical level. As Soviet (and Jewish) writer Ilya Selvsinky put Fridlyand’s files in the Our Achievements archive, Rossiiskii gosudarstvennyi arkhiv literatury i isskustva (RGALI) [Russian State Archive for Literature and Art]. f. 617, op. 1, d. 214.

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Figure 9.  Semyon Fridlyand, “Korean Girl in Birobidzhan”, 1934. Dalbey Photographic Collection at the University of Denver. University Art Collections. University of Denver, Denver, Colorado. 

it when discussing Jews’ curls and noses and the positive influences of Soviet socialism: “even their [Jewish] noses have become shorter” as a result of the conditions of labor.26 In addition to creating the image of the new Jew in Birobidzhan, Frid­lyand also took  a series of potentially more classical colonial photographs showing Jewish settlers’ interactions with the local Korean population. In addition to this socialist realist photograph of  a young Korean pioneer smiling at the camera (Figure 9.), Fridlyand’s Nashi Dostizheniie photo essay included one image show 26 Ilya Selvinsky, Wartime Diaries September 1, 1941, as quoted in Shrayer, M., I Saw It: Ilya Selvinsky and the Legacy of Bearing Witness to the Shoah (Boston, 2013), 25.

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Figure 10. Semyon Fridlyand, “Meeting with a Korean”, 1934. Dalbey Photographic Collection at the University of Denver. University Art Collections. University of Denver, Denver, Colorado. 

ing an interaction between the European Jewish colonists and the native Koreans (Figure 10). Traditional colonial photography emphasized how the West uplifted the backward East through modern education, transportation, and the mechanization of agriculture, which was in fact taking place during the Soviet Five-Year Plan with crash industrialization and collectivization of agriculture. Not coincidentally, this was precisely the same period when Zelmanovitch and Fridlyand photographed Birobidzhan. But Fridlyand’s photographs show something quite different. In Fridlyand’s vision of their interaction, the local Koreans and Jewish colonists are in conversation with one another, and if we pay particular attention to the Korean’s gesture, he is informing the European settlers, not vice versa. We know, in fact, from agronomists conducting research in Birobidzhan, that Jewish settlers tried and failed to bring European farming techniques to the tundra of Birobidzhan. The agronomist V. R. Viliams produced a report on the 1927 KOMZET expedition exploring the “Birsko-Bidzhan” region. The final report of the expedition that explored, charted, and mapped the B ­ irobidzhan region for its future Jewish inhabitants discussed its flora, fauna, climate, and natural resources. But it also identified two ethnic groups already living there – Koreans and Kazaks – and did not view them merely as part of an Orientalized landscape. In the discussion of how to develop Jewish agriculture in ­Birobidzhan, the report emphasized that its investigation could only be carried

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out “thanks to several Koreans who instructed us”.27 In the prelude to the discussion of farming techniques that Jewish settlers could use, the report mentioned “the presence in Birobidzhan of two different agricultural systems existing parallel to one another  – the Kazak and the Korean [systems. This] prompted us to compare the technology, organization, and the agricultural output of each system”.28 In other words, the expedition recognized the difficult task of cultivating ­Birobidzhan, after trying and failing to bring European agricultural techniques to a taiga landscape. Rather, the expedition wanted, first and foremost, to learn from local farmers. European Jews would learn from Birobidzhani Koreans and Kazakhs. Avrom Merezhin, head of KOMZET, echoed the sentiments of the expedition’s agronomists in a 1928 speech made before the Soviet Central Executive Committee. After reiterating the agricultural, climatological, and other natural phenomena that made Birobidzhan a possible home for Soviet Jewry, Merezhin discussed how Jews would relate to other inhabitants of the region. In  a section of his speech titled “The Korean Question and Rice Cultivation”, ­Merezhin showed that Koreans were not only an integral part of the region, but also “the best rice cultivators”. Moreover, the presence of  a large Korean population as well as settlements of other migrants in the area affected how the Jewish region’s borders would be drawn. “We will be careful about where we colonize to be sensitive to the existing population.”29 He then carefully analyzed Birobidzhan’s existing demographics, determining that there were 17,458 “long-time inhabitants” of the region, 1,192 recent (primarily Russian and Kazakh) migrants, 600 “native” people, 4,423 Koreans, and 8,560 people who were in the region to work on the railroad.30 The Central Executive Committee’s resolution of 24 March, 1928 supporting Jewish resettlement in the Biro-Bidzhan region specifically mentioned the native population by officially resolving that land designated for Jewish resettlement would “exclude the areas under use by long-time residents, by the Kazakh population”, as well as by other inhabitants.31 Given the ambivalence of the project itself in terms of its relation to empire and modernization, in Fridlyand’s Birobidzhan photography, the line between colonizer and colonized is not always clear. 27 Viliams, V. R., (ed.), Otchet ekspeditsii Komzeta 1927 g. po obsledovaniiu birsko-bidzhanskogo raiona dal’nevostochnogo kraia (birobidzhana) [Report of the 1927 Komzet Research Expedition on the Birobidzhan Area of the Far Eastern Region (Birobidzhan)] (Moscow, 1930), 159. 28 Viliams, Otchet, 161. 29 Speech by Avrom Merezhin, August, 1928, as published in Merezhin, A., Vegn Birobidzhan (On Birobidzhan) (Kiev, 1929), 20–22. 30 Merezhin, Vegn Birobidzhan, 41. 31 Rezoliutsiia TsIKa, March 24, 1928 as published in Merezhin, Vegn Birobidzhan, 102–3. For the resolution in Hebrew, see L’vavi, Y., Ha-hityashvut ha-yehudit be-birobidzhan (Jewish Settlement in Birobidzhan) (Jerusalem, 1965), 350–1.

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Figure 11.  Semyon Fridlyand, “Karaganda Miners Reading Pravda”, 1930s. Dalbey Photographic Collection at the University of Denver. University Art Collections. University of Denver, Denver, Colorado. 

The act of documenting Birobidzhan had a profound influence on both photo­ graphers. For Zelmanovitch, the Ogonek Birobidzhan photo essay was the last time he appeared in print as “Zelmanovitch”. From that moment onward, he changed his name to the hyper-modern “Zelma”, the name by which he would become known during World War II, especially as a result of his photographs of the Battle of Stalingrad, and the name by which he is always referenced in histories of photography and by photography collectors. (It is also the name he and his family used in his archive.) In fact, few even know that he photographed as Zelmanovitch for the first ten years of his career. After his experience in Birobidzhan, Fridlyand became an important figure in socialist empire photography, something he had not done extensively before Birobidzhan. From the mid-1930s until his death in 1964, Fridlyand was “on the road” – which also happens to be the title of an exhibition mounted at the University of Denver dedicated to his photographs, in which I participated. He travelled a vast extent of the country photographing the Soviet “Other” – a young man in the Caucasus, a group of Mongolian schoolgirls learning to read, sheep farmers on the steppe of Russia, fishermen in the Soviet Far East. On the one hand, Fridlyand adopted traditional colonial strategies of showing the white ethnic Russian uplifting the native, bringing modernity through socialism to the four corners of the country. Unlike the Birobidzhan photos,

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Figure 12. Semyon Fridlyand, “Champions of Labor, Turkmeniia, 1950s”. Dalbey Photographic Collection at the University of Denver. University Art Collections. University of Denver, Denver, Colorado.

these more traditional colonial photographs depict a clearer line between colonized and colonizer. For example, this 1930s photograph (Figure 11) shows the ethnic Soviet citizen, perhaps Mongolian or from somewhere else in the Far East, reading Pravda no longer in his native language but in Russian, as a result of Stalin-era Russification in place of earlier cultural and linguistic affirmative action that fostered culture in local languages. Surrounding him are his fellow miners, cheering him as he becomes a modern socialist person by reading from the Party newspaper. His gaze, however, tells even more. He does not look at his smiling comrades reveling in his accomplishment, but turns toward the slightly obscured white man in the foreground, presumably the bearer of the newspaper and, more metaphorically, of modernization and socialism. However, Fridlyand’s vision of a socialist empire is more complicated than that. Soviet theories of nationality held that local cultures were not just meant to be modernized and Europeanized. They were also celebrated as a demonstration of socialism’s commitment to the brotherhood of nations. Native cultures were elevated, celebrated, and also romanticized as authentic, as these Turkmen women in costume show (Figure 12). What stands out in this 1950s color photograph, which would have appeared in a mainstream magazine like Ogonek, are the women’s ethnic appearance and their deep red clothing. The red stands out against the flat blue sky and the beige blanket on which they sit.

162  David Shneer As  a color, red played  a significant role in Communist iconography, but it only became significant in photography as an aesthetic tool in the age of color. However, even then, red is complicated. The red in this photograph is not the garish red of Communism. Instead, it is a deep, warm red of “the East”, of Oriental carpets and women’s clothing. By emphasizing the women’s clothing and their ethnic appearance, Fridlyand celebrates and romanticizes their culture as authentic and rooted in place. However, one element ruptures this reading. The women have all been named “Heroes of Socialist Labor”, and to mark their achievement, they each wear a Soviet badge on their chests made of Communist red. Even when Fridlyand photographs the farthest reaches of the empire, physically and metaphorically, he ties them to the larger project of socialism and to Moscow, which has bestowed this honor upon them. Photographers thus portrayed the Soviet Union as a place that celebrated diversity and folk cultures and brought European learning to the “backward” peoples of the empire. This photographic tension in Zelmanovitch’s and Fridlyand’s work reflects the Soviet Union’s own ambivalent stance as a socialist empire – a Communist paradise that tried to both celebrate diverse cultures and demand modernization. And this ambivalent photography of empire may also have reflected Jews’ – and Jewish photographers’ – own ambivalent status in the empire, as both colonizer and colonized, as simultaneously hypermodern in their cosmopolitanism and hopelessly backward in their religiosity. Cultural theorist Boris Groys has suggested that Soviet Jewish photojournalists like Zelmanovitch and Fridlyand photographed the Soviet ethnic Other precisely to make themselves feel whiter and more Russian.32 There is some truth to this, as Harriet Murav showed in the role Jews played in literary translation – from the many languages of the S­ oviet nations into Russian  – in the Soviet Union. Being the translators of culture, from East to West, from center to periphery, gave Jews a lot of power, especially in Lenin’s world where the camera was as mighty as the sword. But this brings us back to their images of Birobidzhan – a place of the East, populated by European Jews from the Ukraine and Belorussia, who occupied a diasporic middle ground between colonizer and colonized. Only in the Birobidzhan photographs – in photographs of the new Soviet Jew – do we see the ambivalent glimpses of Zelmanovitch and Fridlyand, our socialist realist magicians who transformed an impoverished present into an iconic future by looking in the mirror and wrestling with their roles as documenters of an ambivalent empire.

32 Groys, B., “From Internationalism to Cosmopolitanism: Artists of Jewish Descent in the Stalin Era,” in S. Goodman Tumarkin (ed.), Russian Jewish Artists in a Century of Change (Munich/New York, 1995), 81–88, on p. 84.

Documenting the Ambivalent Empire 163

Bibliography Bar-Gal, Y., Propaganda and Zionist Education: The Jewish National Fund, 1924–1947 (Roches­ ter, 2003). Ben-David Val, L., (ed.), Propaganda and Dreams (Zurich/New York, 1999). Benton, M., Shuttered Memories of a Vanishing World: The Deliberate Photography of ­Roman Vishniac, Ph.D. diss., Courtauld Institute of Art, London, forthcoming. Dekel-Chen, J., Farming the Red Land: Jewish Agricultural Colonization and Local Soviet Power, 1924–1941 (New Haven, 2005). Galeyev, I./Penson, M., Max Penson: Soviet Avant-Garde Photographer (Stuttgart, 2011). Goodman Tumarkin, S. (ed.), Russian Jewish Artists in a Century of Change (Munich/New York, 1995). Groys, B., “From Internationalism to Cosmopolitanism: Artists of Jewish Descent in the Stalin Era,” in S. Goodman Tumarkin (ed.), Russian Jewish Artists in a Century of Change (Munich/New York, 1995), 81–88. Hirsch, F., “Race Without the Practice of Racial Politics,” Slavic Review 61:1 (Spring 2002), 30–43. Jay, M./Ramaswany, S. (ed.), Empires of Vision: A Reader (Durham, 2014). Jenkins, R. (ed.), On the Road in the Soviet Empire: Semyon Fridlyand Photographs (Denver, 2008). Kuchenbecker, A., Zionismus ohne Zion: Birobidzhan: Idee und Geschichte eines jüdischen Staates in Sowjet-Fernost (Berlin, 2000). L’vavi, Y., Ha-hityashvut ha-yehudit be-birobidzhan (Jewish Settlement in Birobidzhan) (Jeru­ salem, 1965). Martin, T., The Affirmative Action Empire: Nations and Nationalism in the Soviet Union, 1923–1939 (Cornell, 2001). Maxwell, A., Colonial Photography and Exhibitions: Representations of the Native and the Making of European Identities (Leicester, 2000). Merezhin, A., Vegn Birobidzhan (On Birobidzhan) (Kiev, 1929). Rovner, A., In the Shadow of Zion: Promised Lands Before Israel (New York, 2014) Ryan, J. R., Picturing Empire: Photography and the Visualization of the British Empire (Chicago, 1998). Shneer, D., Yiddish and the Creation of Soviet Jewish Culture (New York, 2004). Shneer, D., Through Soviet Jewish Eyes: Photography, War, and the Holocaust (New Brunswick, 2011). Shrayer, M., I Saw It: Ilya Selvinsky and the Legacy of Bearing Witness to the Shoah (Boston, 2013). Shternshis, A., Soviet and Kosher: Jewish Popular Culture in the Soviet Union, 1917–1941 (Bloomington, 2006). Sviblova, O., Max Penson: Classic Soviet Modernist Photographer Max Penson and the Soviet Modernisation of Uzbekistan 1920–1930s (Moscow, 2006). Verancini, L., Settler Colonialism: A Theoretical Overview (Basingstoke, 2011). Viliams, V. R., (ed.), Otchet ekspeditsii Komzeta 1927 g. po obsledovaniiu birsko-bidzhans­kogo raiona dal’nevostochnogo kraia (birobidzhana) [Report of the 1927 Komzet Research Expedition on the Birobidzhan Area of the Far Eastern Region (Birobidzhan)] (Moscow, 1930). Viliams, V. R., (ed.), Birsko-bidzhanskii raion dal’ne vostochnogo kraia: trudy ekspeditsii 1927 goda, predvaritel’nyi svodnyi otchet ekspeditsii (Birsko-Bidzhan Area of the Far Eastern Region: The Work of the 1927 Expedition. A Preliminary Report) (Moscow, 1928). Weinberg, R., Stalin’s Forgotten Zion: Birobidzhan and the Making of a Soviet Jewish Homeland (Berkeley, 1998).

164  David Shneer Newspapers and Periodicals Nashi Dostizheniia Pravda

Archival Sources

Georgy Zelma Archive, Scarsdale, New York Semyon Fridlyand Archive, University of Denver Rossiiskii gosudarstvennyi arkhiv literatury i isskustva (RGALI) [Russian State Archive for Literature and Art]

Picture credits Cover (from left to right): Row one: Denaumov, SPb sobornaia mechet’ (St. Petersburg mosque). Moroz, 19.01.2010 (https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File: СПб_соборная_мечеть._Мороз..jpg?uselang=ru.); Choral Synagogue Vilnius; Alex G., Dome of St. Petersburg Mosque, 28.08.2011. (http://upload.wikimedia. org/wikipedia/commons/2/21/Saint-Petersburg-Mosque%2C-dome.jpg); Postcard of unknown trader to tobacco factory Edelstein in Vilnius, 20.05.1896. Lietuvos Valsty­bes Istorijos Archyvas in Vilnius, LVIA, f. 602, op. 1, d. 2 (courtesy of the archive); Doomych, The St.-Petersburg cathedral mosque, Arabesques, 13.07.2008. (https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Saint_Petersburg_Mosque_-_02.jpg?uselang=de); Alex G., St. Petersburg cathedral mosque; Row two: Ulugh Beg Madrasah, Samarkand; Vatan Söiushe, bäyet sugyshy khokinda, Ufa 1915, p. 2; Synagogue, Samarkand; Chor Minor Mosque, Bukhara; Nurulla Mosque, Kazan; Vatan Söiushe, bäyet, 1915, title page; Row three: Tara Amingu, Choral Synagogue of Tomsk, 11.2011 (https://ru.wikipedia.org/wiki/ Томская_хоральная_ синагога#/media/file:Томская_Хоральная_Синагога. jpg); Mosque Nury, Kazan; Mosque, Samarkand; Bezneng tavysh (“Our Voice”), No. 19, 1917, p. 3; Spodarenko Iurii, Great Choral Synagogue in St. Petersburg, 13.11.2011. (https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/User:Canes#/media/File:Great_ Choral_Synagogue_in_Saint_Petersburg_2.jpg); Ymblanter, Volgograd Synagogue, 08.07.2007 (https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/5/57/ Volgograd_Synagogue.jpg); Row four: Postcard of  a trader from Rėčyca, 31.01.1896, LVIA, f. 602, op. 1, d. 1; Vatan Söiushe, bäyet, 1915; Ulugh Beg Madrasah; Qolşärif Mosque, Kazan; General Memorial: Społki Akcyjnej Wyrobow wełnianych i bawełnianych M. Silberstein w Łodzi, 1873–1899. Archiwum Państwowe w Łodzi, 117, p.  1 (courtesy of the archive); Letter of trader S. I. Laser­sohn to Edelstein in Vilnius, 25.01.1896. LVIA, f. 602, op. 1, d. 1; Row five: Mosque, Samarkand; Chor Minor Mosque, Bukhara; LVIA, f. 602, op. 1, d. 1; Synagogue Samarkand; Denaumov, SPb sobornaia mechet’; Spodarenko I­urii, Mechet’ Sankt-Peterburga. Majolika portal, 04.08.2011 (https://commons. wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Мечеть_Санкт-Петербурга._Майолика_портала.jpg); Row six: Doomych, Arabesques; General Memorial, p. 7; Choral Synagogue Vilnius; Spodarenko, Synagogue; Choral Synagogue Vilnius; LVIA, f. 602, op. 1, d. 2; Row seven: Bezneng tavysh, No. 19; Qolşärif Mosque; Vatan Söiushe, bäyet; Qolşärif Mosque; General Memorial, p. 1; Synagogue Samarkand; Row eight: Synagogue Samarkand; Qolşärif Mosque; Ulugh Beg Madrasah; Chor Minor

166  Picture credits Mosque; LVIA, f. 602, op. 1, d. 2; Mosque Samarkand; Row nine: Choral Synagogue Vilnius; Alex G., St. Petersburg Mosque; Vatan Söiushe, bäyet, pp. 4–5; Mosque Nury; Spodarenko, St. Petersburg Synagogue; Synagogue Samarkand

Contributors and Editors Michael Brenner is professor of Jewish History and Culture at the Ludwig Maxi­milians University Munich and Seymour and Lilian Abensohn Chair in Israel Studies at American University in Washington, DC . His latest book is A Short History of the Jews. Franziska Davies is research associate at the chair of Eastern European History at the Ludwig-­Maximilians University Munich. She is working on the role of Muslims in the Russian army from 1874 until 1917. David E. Fishman is professor of Jewish History at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America in New York. His latest book is The Rise of Modern Yiddish Culture. Adeeb Khalid is Jane and Raphael Bernstein Professor of Asian Studies and History at Carleton College. His latest book Making Uzbekistan. Nation, Empire and Revolution in the Early USSR is forthcoming. Michael Khodarkovsky is professor of History at Loyola University Chicago. His latest book is Bitter Choices: Loyalty and Betrayal in the Russian Conquest of the North Caucasus. Vladimir Levin is the Deputy Director of the Center for Jewish Art at the ­Hebrew University of Jerusalem and a Teaching Fellow at the History Department in Ben Gurion University of the Negev. His book Jewish Politics in the ­Russian Empire in the Period of 1907–1914 is forthcoming. Yohanan Petrovsky-Shtern is the Crown Family Professor of Jewish Studies and professor of Jewish History at Northwestern University. His latest book is The Golden Age Shtetl: A New History of Jewish Life in East Europe. David Shneer is Louis Singer Chair in Jewish History and professor of History, Religious Studies and Jewish Studies at the University of Colorado, Boulder. His latest book is Through Soviet Jewish Eyes: Photography, War, and the Holocaust.

168  Contributors and Editors David Schick is research associate in the International Research Training Group “Religious Cultures in 19th and 20th Century Europe” at the Ludwig Maximilians University Munich. He is working on the relationship between religious convictions and economic activities among Jewish merchants in imperial Russia. Michael Stanislawski is Nathan J. Miller Professor of Jewish History at Columbia University. His latest book is A Murder in Lemberg: Politics, Religion, and ­Violence in Modern Jewish History. Martin Schulze Wessel is professor of Eastern and Southeastern European History at the Ludwig Maximilians University Munich. His latest book is Revolution und religiöser Dissens. Der römisch-katholische und russisch-orthodoxe Klerus als Träger religiösen Wandels in den böhmischen Ländern und der Habsburgermonarchie bzw. in Russland 1848–1922.