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Last edited by Jon Isaak
July 14, 2017 | History

In Defense of Privilege: Russian Mennonites and the State Before and During World War I 1 edition

Cover of: In Defense of Privilege | Abraham Friesen
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About the Book

The transition from being a severely persecuted religious minority in the Reformation era to becoming a privileged ethnic minority in the 19th-century Russian empire makes the Dutch-Polish-Russian Mennonite story a very intriguing one. Yet the privileges granted these Mennonites by Russia in 1800─permanent exemption from military service, freedom of religion, self-government, and control of their own schools─came under attack by imperial authorities with the government's decision to implement russification policies in the 1860s. This book documents how the Mennonites fought back, resisting the government's attempt to assimilate and to restrict their religious freedoms.

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In Defense of Privilege
Russian Mennonites and the State Before and During World War I
by Abraham Friesen

Published 2006 by Kindred Productions in Winnipeg, MB, Canada, Hillsboro, KS, USA .
Written in English.

Table of Contents

Preface vii
Acknowledgments xii
Archival Collections and Abbreviations xvi
Part I: Prologue to Conflict: History, Historians, and the Recovery of Heritage
1. Introduction: A Russian Mennonite Parable 3
2. In Search of Authors 17
3. No Longer a Child 29
4. Through the Eyes of a Stranger 51
Part II: Religious Minorities and the Orthodox State: Mennonites and the Politics of Religion after the April/October 1905 Manifesto
5. "Nowhere do Heterodox Religions Enjoy so Perfect a Liberty as in Russia" 89
6. "Raduga," the Sign of God's New Covenant with Russia 123
7. Church and State against the Covenant: the Investigation of "Raduga" 141
8. "The Godless Promise not to make Propaganda for the Mennonite Faith" 169
Part III: Ethnic Minorities and the War: Mennonite Isolation, Opposition to Russification, and the Coming of Land Liquidation
9. "Do you not know that every German in Russia is a Spy?" 191
10. "All this, with one Stroke of the Pen, will belong to Us" 211
11. "We Hate and Loathe this People" 251
12. "A Nation State will simply not tolerate Ethnic Minorities" 259
Part IV: The War, its Aftermath, and the Russian Mennonite Search for Identity
13. War and Ethnic Identity: "A Process of Clarification" 271
14. The Voelkein and the Volk: Repatriation, Emigration, and a Shifting National Identity 303
15. Those Who Ignore History 327
Epilogue: Who are the (Russian) Mennonites? 345
Endnotes 373
Bibliography 493
Index 515

Edition Notes

Perspectives on Mennonite Life and Thought, No. 16
Copyright Date


Dewey Decimal Class

The Physical Object

xvii, 520p.
Number of pages
9.0 x 5.8 x 1.0 inches

ID Numbers

Open Library
Internet Archive
Library Thing


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July 14, 2017 Edited by Jon Isaak Edited without comment.
July 14, 2017 Edited by Jon Isaak Edited without comment.
April 28, 2010 Edited by Open Library Bot Linked existing covers to the work.
February 6, 2010 Edited by WorkBot add more information to works
December 10, 2009 Created by WorkBot add works page