Part of the Palgrave Studies in the History of Social Movements book series (PSHSM)


This book focuses on Jewish working-class revolutionary youth who rebelled against both class- and ethnicity-based discrimination during the Russian Revolution of 1905. When pogroms swept through the Pale of Settlement towns and shtetls1 in 1905–07, young Jews who had earlier left the Jewish community, often after bitter conflicts with their families, returned to protect their homes. They returned with new identities, forged in radical study circles and revolutionary experience, as activist, self-assertive Jews. As such, they claimed a leadership status within the Jewish community. This book seeks to explain their journey.2


Jewish Community Jewish Identity Political Prisoner Revolutionary Movement Political Police 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 2.
    The ‘return’ is a well-known trope in Jewish literature of the time. See Dan Miron, A Traveler Disguised: The Rise of Modern Yiddish Fiction in the Nineteenth Century (New York, 1973);Google Scholar
  2. David G. Roskies, ‘A. Ansky and the Paradigm of Return’, in Jack Wertheimer (ed.), The Uses of Tradition: Jewish Continuity in the Modern Era (New York, 1992), pp. 243–60;Google Scholar
  3. and Gabriella Safran and Steven J. Zipperstein (eds), The Worlds of S. An-sky: A Russian Jewish Intellectual at the Turn of the Century (Stanford, CA, 2006).Google Scholar
  4. 3.
    See Gerald D. Surh, 1905 in St Petersburg: Labor, Society and Revolution (Stanford, CA, 1989);Google Scholar
  5. Heather Hogan, Forging Revolution: Metalworkers, Managers, and the State in St Petersburg, 1890–1914 (Bloomington, IN, 1993);Google Scholar
  6. Mark D. Steinberg, Moral Communities: The Culture of Class Relations in the Russian Printing Industry 1867–1907 (Berkeley, CA, 1992);Google Scholar
  7. Victoria E. Bonnell, Roots of Rebellion: Workers’ Politics and Organizations in St Petersburg and Moscow, 1900–1914 (Berkeley, CA, 1983);Google Scholar
  8. Charters Wynn, Workers, Strikes, and Pogroms: The Donbass–Dnepr Bend in Late Imperial Russia, 1870–1905 (Princeton, NJ, 1992);CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Reginald E. Zelnik (ed.), Workers and Intelligentsia in Late Imperial Russia: Realities, Representations, Reflections (Berkeley, CA, 1999);Google Scholar
  10. and Leopold Haimson, Russia’s Revolutionary Experience, 1905–1917 (New York, 2005).Google Scholar
  11. 5.
    Haimson, Russia’s Revolutionary Experience. For the sustainability of emotional changes, see William M. Reddy, The Navigation of Feeling: A Framework for the History of Emotion (Cambridge, 2001) and his treatment of sentimentalism.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 6.
    Verta Taylor, ‘Social Movement Continuity: The Women’s Movement in Abeyance’, American Sociological Review, 54 (1989), pp. 761–75.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. 7.
    K. Jill Kiecolt, ‘Self-Change in Social Movements’, in Sheldon Stryker, Timothy J. Owens and Robert W. White (eds), Self, Identity, and Social Movements (Minneapolis, MN, 2000), pp. 111 and 125.Google Scholar
  14. 10.
    William M. Reddy, The Invisible Code: Honor and Sentiment in Postrevolutionary France 1814–1848 (Berkeley, CA, 1997).Google Scholar
  15. 12.
    Randall Collins, ‘Social Movements and the Focus of Emotional Attention’, in Jeff Goodwin, James M. Jasper and Francesca Polletta (eds), Passionate Politics: Emotions and Social Movements (Chicago, IL, 2001), pp. 27–43.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. 13.
    ‘Virtues are dispositions not only to act in particular ways, but also to feel in particular ways,’ Alasdair MacIntyre, After Virtue: A Study in Moral Theory (Notre Dame, IN, 1981), p. 149.Google Scholar
  17. 14.
    For another historical work dealing with a social culture temporarily developing around revolutionary ideas and gaining importance in and of itself, see Martha A. Ackelsberger, The Free Women of Spain: Anarchism and the Struggle for the Emancipation of Women (Bloomington, IN, 1991) on Spanish anarchist feminists during the Spanish Civil War.Google Scholar
  18. 15.
    Mark D. Steinberg, Proletarian Imagination: Self, Modernity and the Sacred in Russia, 1910–1925 (Ithaca, NY, 2002), p. 57; and Reddy, The Navigation of Feeling.Google Scholar
  19. 22.
    Michael Melancon and Alice K. Pate (eds), New Labor History: Worker Identity and Experience in Russia, 1840–1918 (Bloomington, IN, 2002).Google Scholar
  20. 23.
    See Surh, 1905 in St Petersburg; Hogan, Forging Revolution; Steinberg, Moral Communities; Bonnell, Roots of Rebellion; Wynn, Workers, Strikes, and Pogroms; Zelnik (ed.), Workers and Intelligentsia; Haimson, Russia’s Revolutionary Experience; and Allan K. Wildman, The Making of a Workers’ Revolution: Russian Social Democracy, 1891–1903 (Chicago, IL, 1967).Google Scholar
  21. 25.
    Michael Melancon, The Lena Goldfields Massacre and the Crisis of the Late Tsarist State (College Station, TX, 2006);Google Scholar
  22. Steinberg, Proletarian Imagination; Gennady Shkliarevsky, ‘Constructing the “Other”: Representations of the Educated Elite by Authors from the Lower Classes in Late Imperial Russia’, Jahrbuecher fuer Geschichte Osteuropas, 48 (4) (2000), pp. 511–27.Google Scholar
  23. 27.
    Iohanan Petrovsky-Shtern, Evrei v Russkoi Armii (Moscow, 2003).Google Scholar
  24. An English version is Yohanan Petrovsky-Shtern, Jews in the Russian Army 1827–1917: Drafted into Modernity (Cambridge, 2008).Google Scholar
  25. 28.
    Some examples include Wildman, The Making of a Workers’ Revolution; Reginald E. Zelnik, Law and Disorder on the Narova River: The Kreenholm Strike of 1872 (Berkeley, CA, 1995); Hogan, Forging Revolution; Steinberg, Moral Communities; Bonnell, Roots of Rebellion; Surh, 1905 in St Petersburg; Wynn, Workers, Strikes, and Pogroms; and Zelnik (ed.), Workers and Intelligentsia.Google Scholar
  26. 29.
    Wynn, Workers, Strikes, and Pogroms; Theodore H. Friedgut, Iuzovka and Revolution (Princeton, NJ, 1989);CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Hiroaki Kuromiya, Freedom and Terror in the Donbass: A Ukrainian–Russian Borderland, 1870s–1990s (Cambridge, 1998);Google Scholar
  28. and Robert Weinberg, The Revolution of 1905 in Odessa: Blood on the Steps (Bloomington, IN, 1993).Google Scholar
  29. 30.
    Michael F. Hamm (ed.), The City in Late Imperial Russia (Bloomington, IN, 1986);Google Scholar
  30. Michael F. Hamm, Kiev: A Portrait, 1800–1917 (Princeton, NJ, 1993);Google Scholar
  31. Stephen D. Corrsin, Warsaw before the First World War: Poles and Jews in the Third City of the Russian Empire, 1880–1914 (New York, 1989).Google Scholar
  32. 31.
    Scott Ury, Barricades and Banners: The Revolution of 1905 and the Transformation of Warsaw Jewry (Stanford, CA, 2012). Ury’s usage of propaganda-initiated discursive change definitely assists us in gaining a better understanding of the virulent political anti-Semitism that developed in Poland at that time.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. 32.
    Reginald Zelnik (ed.), A Radical Worker in Tsarist Russia: The Autobiography of Semen Ivanovich Kanatchikov (Stanford, CA, 1986), p. xxviii.Google Scholar
  34. 34.
    Jonathan Frankel, Prophecy and Politics: Socialism, Nationalism and the Russian Jews, 1862–1917 (Cambridge, 1981);CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Nora Levin, While Messiah Tarried: Jewish Socialist Movements, 1881–1917 (London, 1978);Google Scholar
  36. and Erich Haberer, Jews and Revolution in Nineteenth-Century Russia (Cambridge, 1995).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. 36.
    N. A. Bukhbinder, Istoriia evreiskogo rabochego dvizheniia v Rossii (Leningrad, 1925); and ibid., Materially dlia istorii evreiskogo rabochego dvizheniia v Rossii (Moscow, 1923).Google Scholar
  38. 38.
    Ezra Mendelsohn, Class Struggle in the Pale (Cambridge, 1970).Google Scholar
  39. 39.
    Yoav Peled, Class and Ethnicity in the Pale: The Political Economy of Jewish Workers’ Nationalism in Late Imperial Russia (New York, 1989).Google Scholar
  40. 40.
    Gerald Surh, ‘Ekaterinoslav City in 1905: Workers, Jews, and Violence’, International Labor and Working Class History, 64 (Fall) (2003), pp. 139–66; and ibid., ‘The Role of Civil and Military Commanders during the 1905 Pogroms in Odessa and Kiev’, Jewish Social Studies, 15 (3) (2009), pp. 39–55.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  41. 41.
    John D. Klier and Shlomo Lambroza (eds), Pogroms: Anti-Jewish Violence in Modern Russian History (Cambridge, 1992);Google Scholar
  42. Ilya Gerasimov, ‘Evreiskaya prestupnost’ v Odesse nachala XX v.: Ot ubiistva k krazhe? Kriminal’naya evoliutsiia, politicheskaya revoliutsiia I sotsial’naya modernizatsiia’, in Ilya Gerasimov et al. (eds), Novaya imperskaya istoriia postsovetskogo pros-transtva (Kazan, 2004), pp. 501–628;Google Scholar
  43. and Ilya Gerasimov, ‘My ubivaem tol’ko svoikh’, Ab Imperio, 1 (2003), pp. 209–60.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. 43.
    Henry Jack Tobias, The Jewish Bund in Russia: From its Origins to 1905 (Stanford, CA, 1972);Google Scholar
  45. and Jack Jacobs (ed.), Jewish Politics in Eastern Europe: The Bund at 100 (New York, 2001).Google Scholar
  46. 44.
    Joshua D. Zimmerman, Poles, Jews, and the Politics of Nationality: The Bund and the Polish Socialist Party in Late Czarist Russia, 1892–1914 (Madison, WI, 2004).Google Scholar
  47. 46.
    Michael C. Hickey, ‘People with Pure Souls’, Revolutionary Russia, 20 (1) (2007), pp. 51–73.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  48. 47.
    A. E. Ivanov, Evreiskoe studenchestvo v Rossiiskoi imperii nachala XX veka (Moscow, 2007), p. 80.Google Scholar
  49. 48.
    Benjamin Nathans, Beyond the Pale: The Jewish Encounter with Late Imperial Russia (Berkeley, CA, 2002).CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. 49.
    A. E. Ivanov, Studenchestvo Rossii kontsa XIX–nachala XX veka: sotsial’noistoricheskaya sud’ba (Moscow, 1999); ibid., Studencheskaya korporatsiia Google Scholar
  51. Rossii kontsa XIX–nachala XX veka: opyt kul’turnoi i politicheskoi samoor-ganizatsii (Moscow, 2004); Aleksei Markov, Chto znachit byt’ studentom (Moscow, 2005);Google Scholar
  52. and Susan K. Morrissey, Heralds of Revolution: Russian Students and the Mythologies of Radicalism (Oxford, 1998).Google Scholar
  53. 50.
    Nathans, Beyond the Pale; Gabriella Safran, Rewriting the Jew: Assimilation Narratives in the Russian Empire (Stanford, CA, 2000);Google Scholar
  54. and Eli Lederhendler, The Road to Modern Jewish Politics: Political Tradition and Political Reconstruction in the Jewish Community of Tsarist Russia (Oxford, 1989).Google Scholar
  55. 51.
    Mikhail Krutikov, Yiddish Fiction and the Crisis of Modernity, 1905–1914 (Stanford, CA, 2001);Google Scholar
  56. and Benjamin Harshav, Language in Time of Revolution, 2nd edn (Stanford, CA, 1999).Google Scholar
  57. 52.
    Also Scott Ury’s article uses some contemporary autobiographies by middle-class Jewish youth to tap into a general feeling of despair and a search for community to alleviate that despair – a feeling corresponding to the despair and search for community found among the individuals whom I researched, although of course the reasons for despair in both cases were different. See Scott Ury, ‘The Generation of 1905 and the Politics of Despair’, in Stefani Hoffman and Ezra Mendelsohn (eds), The Revolution of 1905 and Russia’s Jews (Philadelphia, PA, 2008), pp. 96–110.Google Scholar
  58. 53.
    Sandra Pujals, ‘When Giants Walked the Earth: The Society of Former Political Prisoners and Exiles of the Soviet Union, 1921–1935’ (PhD dissertation, Georgetown University, Washington, DC, 1999);Google Scholar
  59. and Iaroslav Leont’ev and Mark Iunge (eds), Vsesoiuznoe obshchestvo politkatorzhan I ssyl’noposelentsev: obrazovanie, razvitie, likvidatsiia (Moscow, 2004).Google Scholar
  60. 54.
    Z. I. Peregudova, Politicheskii sysk Rossii 1880–1917 (Moscow, 2000);Google Scholar
  61. F. Lur’ e , Politseiskie i provokatory (St Petersburg, 1992);Google Scholar
  62. Jonathan W. Daly, Autocracy under Siege: Security Police and Opposition in Russia 1866–1905 (Dekalb, IL, 1988);Google Scholar
  63. and F. Zukerman, The Tsarist Secret Police in Russian Society, 1880–1917 (New York, 1996).CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Inna Shtakser 2014

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Tel Aviv UniversityIsrael

Personalised recommendations