Research Repository

Empire in Disguise: The Soviet-Russian Imperial Metamorphosis after World War I

Schnell, Felix (2015) 'Empire in Disguise: The Soviet-Russian Imperial Metamorphosis after World War I.' Journal of Modern European History, 13 (2). 203 - 225. ISSN 1611-8944

Full text not available from this repository.


In the course of the Russian Civil War the Bolsheviks conquered most of the territories of the former Tsarist Empire. Consequently, Soviet state-building faced context conditions of multi-ethnicity and cultural diversity. Given the Bolshevik's strive for centralised control and the conviction that nationalism was a threat to a unitary revolutionary state, the Bolsheviks created what they considered to be a modern multi-national state: a federation of formally independent national republics. Yet, in fact, political rule in the Soviet Union was rather characterised by political practices typical for empires: unequal centre-periphery relations, foreign domination and internal colonisation. This became increasingly apparent in the 1930s under Stalin's despotism. Soviet state-building did not result in the creation of a modern multinational state, but rather in imperial metamorphosis. Regarding the way the Soviet Union was ruled, it was an «empire in disguise» that proved its imperial nature during and after World War II and finally fell victim to its composite structure.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: D History General and Old World > D History (General) > D501 World War I
D History General and Old World > DK Russia. Soviet Union. Former Soviet Republics
Divisions: Faculty of Humanities > History, Department of
Depositing User: Jim Jamieson
Date Deposited: 24 Jul 2015 00:09
Last Modified: 03 Oct 2019 15:15

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item