Chernyshevskii, Nikolai Garilovich (1828–1889)
Nikolai Chernyshevskii was born in Saratov in 1828 and died there in 1889. He was one of a group of ‘revolutionary democrats’ which included Herzen and Belinskii among its number, and Chernyshevskii became the group’s outstanding intellectual leader during the critical decade following the accession of Tsar Alexander II in 1855. His greatest period of activity thus came in the aftermath of the European revolutionary upheavals in 1848–9, and coincided with Russia’s defeat in the Crimean War (1853–6), the debate leading up the Emancipation of the Serfs (1861), and the subsequent post-emancipation reaction and gathering of revolutionary sentiment.
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