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With and Without Galton

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Nikolai Krementsov

I. “Hygienic” and “Rational” marriage

2. The Publisher: Grigorii Blagosvetlov

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“The Crimean War has convinced us that Russian society lacks a lot [of things] to stand on the same level with Europe. [The war’s] failures and losses have forced us to look closely at what exactly we are lacking, and it turned out that we lack knowledge.”
Nikolai Shelgunov, 1865

1Florinskii’s treatise on “human perfection and degeneration” represented a clear departure from everything he had written before. It was not a review or a translation of some published work. Nor was it a report on a piece of research he himself had conducted, or a textbook summary of a medical specialty he himself had practiced. Rather, it was a “thought piece” that sought to synthesize the newest ideas, concepts, and data from a variety of knowledge fields, ranging from gynecology and hygiene to biology and anthropology. Furthermore, Florinskii had published all of his previous works in specialized periodicals addressed to his fellow physicians, such as Medical Herald, Protocols of the St. Petersburg Society of Russian Physicians, and Military-Medical Journal. In contrast, his discourse on “human perfection and degeneration” first appeared in Russian Word, a leading “thick” journal of the time and, thus, targeted a very different audience. What induced the young professor to take up this new subject and to present it to the new audience? What did he try to accomplish? Why did he publish it in Russian Word? On the other hand, why did the “literary-political” monthly lend its pages (and quite a few of those pages!) to Florinskii’s essays that dealt with such unusual, seemingly obscure scientific issues?

  • 1 Charles Darwin, On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, Or the Preservation of Fav (...)

2The venue and the timing of the publication of Florinskii’s treatise offer some clues to answers to at least some of the numerous questions it raises. It seems likely that the initial inspiration for and the overall theme of Florinskii’s work came from Grigorii Blagosvetlov (1824-1880), the editor-in-chief and publisher of Russian Word. It was Blagosvetlov who serialized it in the August, October, November, and December 1865 issues of his journal. Florinskii’s treatise was actually part of a broad campaign waged by the journal’s editor to popularize science and to promote a “scientific worldview” that sought to explain, and thus, eventually to cure the “social ills” that plagued post-Crimean Russia. A key focus of this campaign was the popularization of Darwin’s concept of the origin of species that promised to shed “light… on the origin of man and his history.”1 Building upon Darwin’s concept, Florinskii’s essays attempted to illuminate not just the past but also the future of mankind.

Grigorii Blagosvetlov’s Russian Word, 1860-1866

  • 2 In comparison, only four new periodicals had appeared in the preceding five years. For detailed qu (...)

3Initially, nothing distinguished Russian Word from the nearly 100 new periodicals that appeared in Russia during the five years between the end of the Crimean War in March 1856 and the March 1861 announcement of the emancipation of the serfs — the first of the Great Reforms.2 Nikolai Shelgunov, one of the journal’s core contributors, described this period in his memoirs:

  • 3 N. V. Shelgunov, “Vospominaniia,” in N. V. Shelgunov, L. P. Shelgunova, M. L. Mikhailov, Vospomina (...)

It was an amazing time, a time when everyone aspired to think, read, and learn and when everyone who had anything on his mind wanted to say it out loud. [Russian] thought that until this time had been asleep has awakened, shaken up, and gone to work. Its impulse was great and its tasks immense. What [everyone] thought about and debated were not some fleeting affairs, but the future fate of the entire country.3

  • 4 See W. Bruce Lincoln, In the Vanguard of Reform: Russia’s Enlightened Bureaucrats, 1825-1861 (DeKa (...)
  • 5 See Esin, Istoriia russkoi zhurnalistiki. For an English language account that focuses exclusively (...)

4What was even more important, for the first time in Russian history, the emperor and his ministers (the “enlightened bureaucrats,” in historian W. Bruce Lincoln’s apt characterisation)4 seemed willing to listen to what the Russian educated public had to say about the country’s “future fate.” The reign of Alexander II had opened a new era of communications between the rulers and the ruled, manifested in the rapid growth of the Russian popular press that provided a wide new venue for the educated public to express its opinions.5

  • 6 For detailed histories of the journal, see L. E. Varustin, Zhurnal “Russkoe slovo.” 1859-1866 (L.: (...)
  • 7 Although the count left his footprints in almost every area of Russian literature, arts, philanthr (...)
  • 8 G. A. Kushelev to F. M. Dostoevskii, 5 July 1858. Cited in Varustin, Zhurnal, p. 13.
  • 9 See Sankt-Peterburgskie vedomosti, 25 October 1858, p. 1365.

5It was right in the middle of this “amazing time” — when the newly sanctioned glasnost’ seemed to offer the Russian educated public at least a say, if not yet an actual role, in defining the country’s future — that the first issue of a new “learned-literary” (ucheno-literaturnyi) monthly journal, titled Russian Word, was launched in St. Petersburg in January 1859 (see fig. 2-1).6 Its founder, publisher, and editor-in-chief Count Grigorii Kushelev-Bezborodko (1832-1870), the last scion of two rich noble families — the Kushelevs and the Bezborodkos — and himself an aspiring litterateur, was clearly responding to the call of the times.7 In a letter to Fedor Dostoevsky, inviting the writer to contribute to his journal, the count explained his ambition: “All persons to whom God has granted strength and talent should now join into one close-knit family, not divide into separate parties of Slavophiles and Westernizers, and work together for the common good.”8 A few months later, on the pages of St. Petersburg’s major newspaper, he enthusiastically announced his intention to unite in the new journal all “thinking people,” be they conservatives, liberals, or radicals: “The very name ‘Russian Word’ allows no singlemindedness in our views and obligates us to take such a vantage point, from which all [things] accessible to Russian thought and the Russian heart, no matter their various shades, will be [seen as] a complete picture, filled with thought and meaning.”9

  • 10 This is how Apollon Grigor’ev, the journal’s leading critic during its first year of publication, (...)
  • 11 See, for instance, V. P. “Literaturnaia zametka,” Russkii invalid, 5 September 1859, p. 1.

6Alas, despite his enthusiasm and ambition, Kushelev-Bezborodko proved an inept editor and even worse businessman. Although he did manage to secure the participation of several well-known poets and writers, including Dostoevsky, Afanasii Fet, Apollon Maikov, and Iakov Polonskii (who became the journal’s co-editor), the young count failed to give his journal a memorable “face.” Even his closest co-workers considered his venture merely “a whim of the golden boy.”10 Reviewers in contemporary periodicals were much less charitable.11 The journal was losing subscribers and only the count’s immense fortune kept it afloat. All this began to change when the count invited Blagosvetlov to take over the journal in June 1860.

Fig. 2-1. The title page of the first issue of Russian Word, identifying it as a “literary-learned journal” and carrying the names of its publisher “Count Gr. Kushelev-Bezborodko” and its typographer, “Riumin and Co.” Courtesy of RNB.

  • 12 For biographical details, see P. S. Shelgunov, “G. Blagosvetlov,” in G. E. Blagosvetlov, Sochineni (...)
  • 13 The early years of Blagosvetlov’s life are described in detail in A. Lebedev, “K biograficheskomu (...)
  • 14 The Russian State Archive for Literature and Arts (hereafter RGALI), f. 1027, op. 1, d. 3, cited i (...)
  • 15 See the Russian State Historical Archive (hereafter RGIA), f. 1268, op. 8 (1855), d. 155, ll. 1-10 (...)

7Blagosvetlov was ten years older than Florinskii, but the early life trajectories of the two men look in many ways similar.12 Like Florinskii, Blagosvetlov came from the low-level clergy (his father was a priest in a military regiment stationed in the Caucasus) and graduated first from a bursa and then from a theological seminary.13 He too came to St. Petersburg from the provinces with no money, no friends, no patron, and no one who could have given him a helping hand. Like Florinskii, he enrolled in the Imperial Medical-Surgical Academy. But unlike his future author, after some seven months at the academy, Blagosvetlov transferred to St. Petersburg University. As he himself later explained, “I had particularly enjoyed studying the natural sciences, [but] unfortunately, could not overcome my revulsion towards surgical operations.”14 Yet at the university he chose to study not the natural sciences, but rather literature, history, and languages, enrolling in its “historical-philological” school. After graduating with first-class honors and a “candidate” degree, Blagosvetlov became a literature teacher in elite military schools in St. Petersburg. But his teaching career soon came to an abrupt end. In late 1855, a student at the School of Pages — the country’s most exclusive military school — denounced Blagosvetlov’s “anti-government views” to his uncle, who happened to be the head of the all-powerful Third Department of the Imperial Chancery — the secret police. Blagosvetlov was fired and a few months later barred from occupying any teaching position in the empire.15 Denied what he considered his true vocation, in the spring of 1857, he went abroad.

  • 16 See G. R. Prokhorov, “G. E. Blagosvetlov, Ia. P. Polonskii, G. A. Kushelev-Bezborodko. Pis’ma i do (...)
  • 17 On Herzen, see Martin Malia, Alexander Herzen and the Birth of Russian Socialism, 1812-1855 (Cambr (...)
  • 18 For a detailed description of Blagosvetlov’s involvement with “revolutionary circles,” see T. I. G (...)
  • 19 Blagosvetlov described the details of his meeting with the count and its results in a nine-page ar (...)

8Like Florinskii’s trip a few years later, Blagosvetlov’s three-year stay in western Europe proved a formative experience. Supporting himself by writing for various Russian periodicals and occasional private teaching, he attended lectures in universities and actively participated in the “Russian circles” he encountered in European capitals. It was in just such a circle in Paris, in 1858, that he met Polonskii, who invited him to write for Russian Word. Blagosvetlov eagerly agreed and began contributing articles to the journal from its very inception.16 A year later, in London, he joined a different circle. He became a disciple and a good friend of Alexander Herzen, “the father of Russian socialism” and the most famous Russian political writer of the time, whose weekly newspaper The Bell (Kolokol), printed in London and clandestinely smuggled to Russia, played a critical role in awakening and shaping public opinion in the aftermath of the Crimean War.17 For nearly a year, Blagosvetlov worked as Herzen’s secretary, assisted with smuggling his newspaper to Russia,18 and tutored Herzen’s daughters in the Russian language and literature. But, in early June 1860, apparently on Polonskii’s suggestion, Kushelev-Bezborodko summoned Blagosvetlov to his estate in the south of France and offered the former literature teacher the position of “managing editor” at Russian Word. Blagosvetlov accepted. Within a few weeks, he was back in St. Petersburg.19

  • 20 For an analysis of Blagosvetlov’s work as a writer and a critic, see E. K. Murenina, “Literaturno- (...)
  • 21 Blagosvetlov, “Otvet g. Podpischiku,” RS, 1865, 9: [iii-xii].
  • 22 At the peak of its popularity in 1865, the number exceeded 4,000. See Kuznetsov, Nigilisty; and Va (...)
  • 23 On the history of The Contemporary, see V. Evgenʹev-Maksimov, “Sovremennik” v 40-50 gg.: ot Belins (...)

9Despite his modest official title — managing editor (upravliaiushchii redaktsiei) — Blagosvetlov soon became the de facto editor-in-chief, and two years later the publisher, of Russian Word.20 As he later confessed, “I had never felt a particular calling to becoming a publisher and entered this trade by pure accident.”21 But he certainly had a talent for it. He quickly turned the journal from a financial sinkhole into a profitable enterprise: in less than a year, the number of subscribers had doubled, from 1,200 to 2,400.22 Blagosvetlov refashioned the “faceless” Russian Word published by Kushelev-Bezborodko into a formidable competitor of The Contemporary — at the time arguably the country’s most influential “thick” journal, published by Nikolai Nekrasov and headed by Nikolai Chernyshevskii and Nikolai Dobroliubov, the apostles of what Soviet historians later affectionately termed “revolutionary-democratic literature.”23 Blagosvetlov stood firmly at the helm of Russian Word through external storms and internal tempests for nearly six years, until the minister of internal affairs suspended the journal’s publication for five months in February 1866; and three months later, the imperial edict finally closed it for good.

  • 24 P. N. Tkachev, “Izdatel’skaia i literaturnaia deiatel’nost’ G. E. Blagosvetlova,” in idem, Kladezi (...)

10Petr Tkachev, a young jurist-turned-journalist, who joined the Russian Word editorial team in the last year of its existence, later described the “extraordinary, fabulous success that Russian Word has achieved in just a few months under Blagosvetlov’s editorship.” “It was always sold out,” Tkachev marveled, “it was read through and through; the appearance of every new issue was eagerly awaited and greeted as a literary event. How much noise, heated disputes, debates, polemics, sometimes thunderous applause, and sometimes venomous cursing did it entice in both literature and society!”24 One could dismiss Tkachev’s accolades as understandable exaggerations forgivable in a tribute to his late friend and editor. But there are numerous very similar accounts written by individuals who could hardly be counted among Blagosvetlov’s friends. Perhaps the most “impartial” valuation of the social impact of Blagosvetlov’s journal came from the censorship agencies, which in June 1862 suspended the publication of both Russian Word and The Contemporary for eight months.

  • 25 G. Blagosvetlov to Ia. Polonskii, Paris, [April] 1859, Zven’ia, 1932, 1: 328-29 (p. 329).
  • 26 For details on certain members of this remarkable group, see F. Kuznetsov, Publitsisty 1860-kh god (...)

11Russian Word’s “extraordinary success” stemmed not so much from Blagosvetlov’s own writings, though it was his articles that first garnered the close attention of the censors as early as September 1860, just three months after he had taken over the journal. It was primarily a result of his determined efforts to gather around the journal a group of like-minded contributors. Blagosvetlov firmly believed that “there must exist consent and accord between an editor and his authors; without them there is no idea, no results.”25 Like any successful editor, he had a good nose and was on constant prowl for fresh talent. Over the years, he recruited to his journal poet Dmitrii Minaev (1835-1889), critics Dmitrii Pisarev (1840-1868) and Varfolomei Zaitsev (1842-1882), historian Afanasii Shchapov (1830-1876), journalists Élie Reclus (1827-1904), Nikolai Shelgunov (1824-1891), Nikolai Sokolov (1835-1889), and Petr Tkachev (1844-1886), and writers Vsevolod Krestovskii (1840-1895), Nikolai Pomialovskii (1835-1863), Fedor Reshetnikov (1841-1871), and Gleb Uspenskii (1843-1902), to list just a few of the better-known names.26

  • 27 There were very few women writers in 1860s Russia, and Blagosvetlov took special care to recruit s (...)
  • 28 This admission appeared in a letter Pisarev’s mother published at her son’s direction in The Conte (...)
  • 29 D. I. Stakheev, “Gruppy i portrety. Listochki vospominanii,” Istoricheskii vestnik, 1907, 109(7-9) (...)
  • 30 G. N. Potanin, “Vospominaniia o N. A. Nekrasove,” Istoricheskii vestnik, 1905, 99(2): 458-89 (p. 4 (...)

12Most of the journal’s regular authors were young men, just 20-25 years of age, who grew and matured under Blagosvetlov’s tutelage.27 An 1865 statement by Pisarev, Russian Word’s most celebrated contributor, is very revealing in this respect: “If… I now understand to a certain degree the duties of an honest litterateur, I must admit that this understanding was awakened and nurtured in me by Mr. Blagosvetlov… [my] friend, teacher, and mentor to whom I owe my advancement and whose guidance I still need to this very day.”28 Blagosvetlov helped his younger co-workers find their voice, often recommending how best to present their materials and arguments. “The first and foremost condition of success,” he advised one author, “is to enliven each article, to paint it in bright colors, so that it would catch the eye from afar. [Your article] doesn’t have such bright colors, try finding them. … The article will become livelier and will shine. … Pepper, add more pepper.” He also required them to be critical and bold. “Expose, attack any falsehood. Reveal abuses and smash the abusers with your words,” he told the same author.29 “Strike. Burn this rotten society,” he urged another author, “hit them harder, harder.”30

  • 31 See Blagosvetlov’s complaint that in several issues of Delo that came out while he had been abroad (...)
  • 32 The existing accounts often disagree on, and occasionally downplay, Blagosvetlov’s actual role in (...)

13Each author brought to the journal his own particular talent, interests, style, and expertise. But it was Blagosvetlov who created a well-tuned orchestra out of this diverse group of soloists and carefully “conducted” each monthly “performance.” He often suggested specific themes and assigned certain tasks to his “staff” authors, at the same time, granting them a considerable degree of responsibility and creative freedom. He defined the general direction of his journal and carefully planned the composition of each issue.31 He shaped the journal’s contents in terms of both the subject matter it addressed and the particular ways each subject was analyzed and organized.32 In short, he was the real engine behind the journal’s successes — and its failures (see fig. 2-2)

Fig. 2-2. Grigorii Blagosvetlov, c.1860s. A lithograph from the posthumous edition of his collected works. From G. E. Blagosvetlov, Sochineniia (SPb.: E. A. Blagosvetlova, 1882). Courtesy of BAN.

  • 33 RGIA, f. 772, op. 8, d. 374. Cited in Varustin, p. 103.
  • 34 All the citations are from Blagosvetlov’s letters to D. L. Mordovtsev, which had been published in (...)
  • 35 See, for instance, RGIA, f. 772, op. 8, d. 105.
  • 36 The State Archive of the Russian Federation (hereafter GARF), f. 109, op. 1, d. 2044, l. 2.

14Nobody understood Blagovesvetlov’s critical role in Russian Word better than the censorship agencies. Just three months after he had taken over the editorial office, a censor duly recorded, “the September [1860] issue of Russian Word clearly exhibits the anti-government direction that the journal is taking under Blagosvetlov’s administration.”33 Thereafter, censors kept a watchful eye on the journal and its new editor. Blagosvetlov’s surviving letters of 1860-61 are full of complaints about the interference of censors. 7 September 1860: “In the September issue, six articles have been forbidden, thanks to our executioners”; 16 October 1860: “We have suffered a pogrom at the hand of censors”; 4 March 1861: “Russian Word has nearly suffocated under the censorship pressure”; 12 December 1861: “The censors are eating us alive. Again [I’ve received] an admonishment. Again, [there are] threats to close the journal, once more, repressions against our contributors.”34 Extensive files devoted to Russian Word in the archives of various censorship agencies bear witness to the fact that Blagosvetlov’s complaints had not been exaggerated, but fully justified.35 Yet Blagosvetlov did not give up. A secret police report noted astutely: “He is a man of strong will and tough character. No matter how much the Main Directorate for the Affairs of the Press [the top censorship agency at the time] squeezes and pressures him, he nonetheless stands his ground and does not deviate from his goals and aspirations.”36

  • 37 For details on the Russian censorship during the period, see Mikhail Lemke, Ocherki po istorii rus (...)
  • 38 See RGIA, f. 777, op. 2, d. 1.

15The following year the pressure increased even further. Annoyed by the rising tide of public criticism — the unintended consequence of the officially sanctioned glasnost’ aptly manifested on the pages of Russian Word — Alexander II approved new “Temporary rules of censorship” issued on 12 May 1862.37 The new rules allowed the minister of internal affairs and the minister of people’s enlightenment (who at that time shared responsibility for censorship), by mutual agreement, to suspend the publication of any periodical suspected of “antigovernment direction” for a period of up to eight months. Five days later, the minister of people’s enlightenment commanded the ministry’s censorship bureau to intensify its control to prevent periodicals from “systematically denouncing everything done by the government and enticing public dissatisfaction with its actions.”38 A month later, together with The Contemporary, Russian Word was suspended for the maximum eight-month period allowable by the new rules.

  • 39 Another regular contributor, Afanasii Shchapov, was exiled to Siberia in the summer of 1864. For a (...)

16To make matters even worse, several core contributors to the journal were arrested, imprisoned, and/or exiled. In April 1862, just a few weeks before the new censorship rules came into effect, Shelgunov was arrested and, after eight-month imprisonment in the infamous Peter-Paul Fortress, was exiled to a small town in the desolate north of the empire in the Vologda province (where he would spend the next thirteen years). In July, Russian Word’s star writer Pisarev also was arrested, for a pamphlet he had written in Herzen’s support, and placed in solitary confinement in the Peter-Paul Fortress (where he would spend more than five years).39

  • 40 For details of this peculiar deal, see Kuznetsov, Nigilisty, pp. 198-204.
  • 41 At first, this role was played by Alexander Afanas’ev-Chuzhbinskii, a wellknown litterateur, and l (...)

17The same month, apparently panicked over the suspension of Russian Word and the arrests of its key authors, Kushelev-Bezborodko, whose name still graced the journal’s title page as its publisher, decided to completely withdraw from the journal. He attempted to transfer the de jure rights to publish and edit Russian Word to Blagosvetlov (obviously with the latter’s consent) and sent an appropriate petition to the censorship office.40 The attempt stirred quite a storm in the government agencies that oversaw the press. Urgent consultations among high-level officials in the St. Petersburg censorship office, the Ministry of People’s Enlightenment, the Ministry of Internal Affairs, and the secret police resulted in the explicit and unconditional prohibition for Blagosvetlov to assume the journal’s editorship. But it turned out that under the existing regulations government agencies could not stop a purely “commercial” deal of transferring the ownership and publishing rights. Blagosvetlov immediately found a proxy editor, who would sign the necessary paperwork41 and proceeded with the publication of the journal, officially only as its publisher.

  • 42 See RGIA, f. 775, op. 1 (1863), d. 288. Emphasis added.
  • 43 D. I. Pisarev, “Nasha universitetskaia nauka,” RS, 1863, 7 (I): 1-75; 8 (I): 1-54.

18Blagosvetlov’s trick of hiding behind proxies to keep the journal running did not fool the authorities. On 9 January 1863, in response to a report by the secret police, the censorship bureau of the Ministry of Internal Affairs opened a special file, “On the editor of ‘Russian Word’ Blagosvetlov.”42 But, it seemed, at this point nothing could stop him: on 30 January 1863, after an eight-month hiatus, the journal’s subscribers received a new issue. Furthermore, in June 1863, Pisarev, still in solitary confinement in the Peter-Paul Fortress, was permitted to resume writing for Russian Word, thanks to Blagosvetlov’s herculean labors done largely behind the scenes, with Pisarev’s mother acting as his proxy. Of course, before it could be published, every piece Pisarev had written had to go through a multi-layered screening: first, by the commandant of the Peter-Paul Fortress, then, by the St. Petersburg governor, then, by the Ruling Senate (which conducted the investigation of Pisarev’s “crimes”), and finally, by the censor. Notwithstanding these hurdles, the July and August issues of Russian Word defiantly opened with lengthy essays by Pisarev on “Our university science,” even though — due to censorship delays — both issues only came out (nearly simultaneously) in September.43

  • 44 “Ob” iavlenie ob izdanii Russkogo slova v 1863 godu,” RS, 1863, 1: front matter.

19Fully justifying his aforementioned characterization by the secret police, Blagosvetlov stood his ground no matter what ammunition the government apparatus threw at him. In an announcement printed in the first 1863 issue of his journal he stated bluntly: “Beginning the fifth year of its publication, Russian Word is not changing its previous programme, its volume, or its moral character.”44 Yet certain things did change. The “resurrected” Russian Word acquired a new subtitle: the “learned-literary” (ucheno-literaturnyi) turned into a “literary-political” (literaturno-politicheskii) journal, an unsubtle statement of Blagosvetlov’s intentions and goals.

20Blagosvetlov kept the previous basic format that included three separate parts, each with its own pagination. The opening section was devoted to “Belles-lettres.” But despite its name, it carried not only poetry and literary fiction, but also extensive analytical articles on history, politics, education, jurisprudence, economics, science, and philosophy. The second section, titled “Literary Review,” dealt in its entirety with criticism and bibliography (the latter was collected in a special subsection, named “Bibliographical Leaf”). Again, despite its title, the actual contents of this part went far beyond literary criticism and presented pointed commentaries on recent publications in every field of scholarship, from politics, history, and economics to science and philosophy. The third part, named “Contemporary Review,” consisted of three well-defined subsections: “Politics” discussed foreign affairs; “Domestic Chronicle,” as its name made clear, surveyed the Russian scene; and the “Diary of an Ignoramus” contained satirical feuilletons on the “hot” subjects of the day.

21Blagosvetlov himself wrote for nearly every section. But he divided the responsibility for particular sections among his core group of writers who contributed to the journal on a regular basis. Minaev kept “the diaries of an ignoramus”; Pisarev and Zaitsev supplied the bulk of the “literary review”; Reclus surveyed foreign politics; while Shchapov, Shelgunov, Sokolov, and Tkachev commented on historical and contemporary issues in economics, politics, law, science, administration, and philosophy both in Russia and abroad.

  • 45 A. N. Gertsen, “Byloe i dumy,” in idem, Sobranie sochinenii (M.: Izd-vo Akademii nauk SSSR, 1954-6 (...)

22In running his journal, Blagosvetlov shared Herzen’s conviction that “any successful polemical journal definitely must have flair for contemporaneity, [it] must have that delicate ticklishness of the nerves that is immediately irritated by everything which irritates society.”45 Critical, feisty, polemical assessments of every significant event in contemporary literary and social life became the trademark of Russian Word under Blagosvetlov’s direction. The journal covered extensively the preparation, content, and implementation of the Great Reforms: the 1861 emancipation of the serfs, the 1863 new university statutes, the 1864 reforms of secondary education, and the complete reorganization of both the local government and the judiciary system launched the same year. It responded to the appearance of such controversial novels as Turgenev’s Fathers and Children (1862) and Chernyshevskii’s What is to be Done?: From the Stories about New People (1863). It did not miss the publication in Russian of major works by such eminent western intellectuals as Henry T. Buckle, Charles Darwin, John Stuart Mill, Carl Ritter, and Rudolf Virchow.

  • 46 Piksanov and Tsekhnovitser, eds, Shestidesiatye gody, p. 225.

23Yet Russian Word went way beyond mere reactions to that which “irritated” contemporary Russian society. As Tkachev recalled, “Russian Word served as a commonly accessible source of new ideas for social consciousness. Every new idea, every new word, every new, original answer to old questions found a place on its pages.”46 The journal identified and defined what society must consider “irritating” and, indeed, itself became a major “irritant” — and not only to the powers that be. Russian Word, according to Pisarev,

  • 47 D. I. Pisarev, “Shkola i zhizn’,” RS, 1865, 7 (I): 132.

has so many writing and reading enemies, it inspires such fiery and univocal hatred from the newspaper and journal doctrinaires who read it so attentively and intently that, in just a week after the publication of each new issue, all thoughts and even all separate expressions it contained have already been counted, measured, weighted, sniffed at, felt over, and taken under consideration.47

  • 48 These various labels, which defined a particular journal’s “direction,” have been widely used in c (...)

24Indeed, the journal was constantly engaged in fierce polemics on almost every issue with not only Katkov’s “conservative” Russian Herald (Russkii vestnik), Andrei Kraevskii’s “liberal” Annals of the Fatherland (Otechestvennye zapiski), and Dostoevsky’s “patriotic” Time (Vremia) and Epoch (Epokha), but also Nekrasov’s “democratic” The Contemporary (see fig. 2-3).48

  • 49 D. I. Pisarev, “Razrushenie estetiki,” RS, 1865, 5 (II): 1-32 (p. 3). Emphasis in original.
  • 50 D. Pisarev, “Pushkin i Belinskii (stat’ia vtoraia),” RS, 1865, 6 (II): 1-60 (p. 3). Emphasis in or (...)
  • 51 Ibid., p. 19. Historians of the journal have spilled much ink on this aspect of Russian Word’s pub (...)
  • 52 D. Pisarev, “Nereshennyi vopros (stat’ia tret’ia i posledniaia),” RS, 1864, 11(II): 1-64 (p. 34).

25Much of the polemic centered on sociological and aesthetic aspects of Russian literature, which served as a convenient substitute for open discussions of Russia’s pressing political, economic, and social issues. Continuing the tradition set by Vissarion Belinskii and further developed by Chernyshevskii and Dobroliubov, the journal’s contributors argued militantly against “art for the sake of art” and for a utilitarian approach to music, literature, and the arts, as well as to the notion of beauty more generally. In an 1865 article, provocatively titled “The Destruction of Aesthetics,” Pisarev forcefully declared: “aesthetics, or the science of beauty, has the right to exist only if beauty has any meaning independent of the limitless variability of personal tastes.”49 Following in the footsteps of John Stuart Mill, one of the contemporary intellectuals most cited and discussed on the journal’s pages, Russian Word’s authors found such meaning in the “utility” of artistic works. They considered only “socially useful” literature to be truly beautiful — and thus true art. As Pisarev famously quipped in one of his manifestos, “art cannot be its own goal, … life is superior to art.”50 They even claimed that the greats of Russian literature — Pushkin and Lermontov — were completely useless to the modern reader: “To bring up young people on [reading] Pushkin is to make them into drone bees or sybarites.”51 In accord with these aesthetic principles, Russian Word published almost exclusively “socially responsible” fiction, while its leading critics hailed those literary works, which, like Chernyshevskii’s What is to be Done?, could, in Pisarev’s words, “facilitate the intellectual or moral perfection (sovershenstvovanie) of humanity.”52

  • 53 See, for instance, V. Samoilovich, “Bezvykhodnoe polozhenie,” RS, 1864, 2 (I): 119-58; 3 (I): 29-7 (...)
  • 54 Such as, for instance, Aleksei F. Pisemskii’s novel A Troubled Sea (Vzbalomuchennoe more) (1863) t (...)
  • 55 See “Zapiska A. V. Nikitenki o napravlenii zhurnala ‘Russkoe slovo’,” Russkii arkhiv, 1895, 2: 225 (...)

26Not only was the journal largely filled with the writings of the young, it addressed and appealed to Russia’s young generation — the “children” and the “new people” immortalized in Turgenev’s and Chernyshevskii’s novels, respectively. The portrayal of Bazarov and Rakhmetov, the main protagonists of the two novels, became the sparring ground for the literary critics of the day, while their names became a battle cry of the youth. In the essays of its leading literary critics, Pisarev and Zaitsev, Russian Word consistently presented Bazarov and Rakhmetov as the rolemodels young Russians should emulate. The journal published a number of short stories and novels, which in various ways “recreated” the major protagonists (new people) and the major conflicts (between fathers and children) first depicted by Turgenev and Chernyshevskii.53 Russian Word also mercilessly criticized those contemporary authors who in their own fictional works “attacked” and “mocked” the ideas and ideals expressed in the images of Bazarov and Rakhmetov.54 In a special report on the journal to the Main Censorship Directorate, censor Alexander Nikitenko noted, “it will not be an exaggeration to say that the present young generation to a considerable degree is getting first educated on the ideas of The Bell [and] The Contemporary and is finishing its education on the ideas of Russian Word.”55

Fig. 2-3. A large-format cartoon of the Russian journalistic scene that appeared as a supplement to the satirical journal Splinter (Zanoza) on 3 March 1863, under the title “A concerto in C-dur(nom) tone.” The title was a play on words: “C-dur,” a major musical scale, and a Russian expression, “durnoi ton,” a loan translation of the French mauvais ton. Drawn by Petr Borel’, a well-known artist, it depicts an orchestra made up from the editors of major journals and newspapers, whose titles are written either on the musical instruments they play or on their clothing. In the upper left corner is a ringing bell — a clear allusion to Alexander Herzen’s eponymous newspaper. A Muse sitting in the chair in the upper right and closing her ears in disgust apparently signifies Russia. Petr Valuev, the minister of internal affairs (second row on the right) holds a tuning-fork, while Vasilii Tsee, the head of the St. Petersburg Censorship Committee (on Valuev’s left), conducts the concerto. Three censors (in the upper row, right to left) Alexander Petrov, unidentified, and Vladimir Beketov moderate the performance.
Periodicals and their editors. First row, left to right: 1. Grigorii Eliseev, on top of him Amplii Ochkin, Essays, a daily newspaper; 2. Vasilii Kurochkin, Spark, a satirical journal; 3. Petr Men’kov, Military Collection, an official journal of the War Ministry; 4. Ivan Balabin, People’s Wealth, a newspaper; 5. Unidentified; 6. Viktor Askochenskii, Home Conversation, a journal; 7. Nikolai Strakhov, Time, a journal published by the Dostoevsky brothers, the cartoon depicts not the editor, but the journal’s leading contributor, whose publications led to shutting the journal down in just a few months after the appearance of the cartoon; 8. Mikhail Rozengeim, Splinter, a satirical journal; 9. Alexander Rotchev, Herald of the City Police, a newspaper; 10. Ivan Goncharov, Northern Post, a daily newspaper of the Ministry of Internal Affairs; 11. Il’ia Arsen’ev, the editor of the political section of Northern Post, who in 1865 would found the first Russian tabloid, Petersburg Leaf; 12. Dmitrii Romanovskii, Russian Invalid, a newspaper of the War Ministry.
Second row, left to right: 1. Valentin Korsh, St. Petersburg News, a daily newspaper; 2. Konstantin Trubnikov, Burse News, a daily newspaper; 3. Nikolai Pavlov, Our Time, a newspaper; 4. Viktor Kapel’mans, Journal de St.-Pétersbourg, a French-language newspaper; 5. Nikolai Pisarevskii, Modern Word, a daily newspaper; 6. Mikhail Katkov, Russian Herald, a journal, and Moscow News, a newspaper; 7. Ivan Aksakov, Day, a weekly newspaper; 8. Aleksei Pisemskii, Reading Library, a journal; 9. Grigorii Blagosvetlov, Russian Word, a journal; 10. Nikolai Nekrasov, The Contemporary, a journal; 11. Andrei Kraevskii, Voice, a daily newspaper; 12. Pavel Usov, Northern Bee, a daily newspaper; 13. Al’bert Starchevskii, Fatherland’s Son, a daily newspaper; 14. Vladimir Zotov, Illustration, a journal. Courtesy of RO IRLI.

  • 56 Cited in Daniel P. Todes, Ivan Pavlov (New York: Oxford University Press, 2014), p. 30. The studen (...)
  • 57 GARF, f. 109, op. 1, d. 1632, l. 2, cited in Kuznetsov, Nigilisty, p. 491.

27The journal was indeed read by the students of gymnasiums, seminaries, universities, and other schools of higher learning, as well as their recent graduates who had become civil servants, military officers, teachers, and doctors — in short, by the fledgling Russian intelligentsia. It was received by the public libraries recently established throughout the empire. Its subscribers resided all over Russia’s vast territories, from Warsaw in the west to Nerchinsk in the depths of Siberia in the east and from the recently “pacified” Caucasus in the south to Vologda in the north. Russia’s future Nobelist Ivan Pavlov, who in 1864 entered a theological seminary in Riazan’ (a small town some 150 kilometers south of Moscow), fondly remembered many years later: “Can one forget the passion with which you captured a long-desired book? I can now see clearly the scene as several of us seminarians and gymnasium students stand for hours on a dirty, cold autumn day before the locked door of the public library in order to be the first to capture an issue of Russian Word with an article by Pisarev.”56 As a professor of Kharkov University described the journal on the eve of its demise in January 1866, “It is a ‘New Testament’ for the majority [of our students].”57

  • 58 After the “Whistle” (Svistok) — a satirical appendix to The Contemporary established by Dobroliubo (...)
  • 59 For a detailed analysis of this characterization and the very label “nihilist,” see Kuznetsov, Nig (...)
  • 60 Compare, for instance, D. Pisarev, “Realisty,” RS, 1864, 9-11; and M. Antonovich, “Lzhe-realisty,”(...)
  • 61 D. I. Pisarev, “Progulka po sadam rossiiskoi slovesnosti,” RS, 1865, 3 (II): 1-68 (p. 35).

28Yet the popular characterization of the journal’s contributors (and readers!) as “nihilists,” “insolent boys,” “school drop-outs,” and “whistlers,”58 who rejected things for the sake of it and who were set on critiquing and destroying that which their “fathers” held dear, was little more than a polemical tool employed by the journal’s numerous enemies.59 Indeed, the “nihilists” called themselves “realists.”60 As Pisarev explained in a lengthy article innocently titled “A Stroll through the Orchards of Russian Literature,” neither he, nor his fellow journal authors were engaged in “criticism for criticism’s sake.” Russian Word’s critical publications aimed, first and foremost, at “the establishment and consistent deployment in the assessment of all current events in life, scholarship, and literature of a particular worldview.”61 A major component, indeed, the very foundation of that “particular worldview,” was science.

Science in Russian Word

  • 62 See a monumental, though dated, two-volume exploration of the place of science in Imperial Russia, (...)

29Students of Russian history have noted regularly that during the late 1850s and the 1860s science moved from the periphery of Russian thought to its very center.62 As many other changes in the country’s life that were embodied in the Great Reforms, this shift was largely spurred by Russia’s crushing defeat in the Crimean War, which had challenged the empire’s major, if not its only, claim to the status of a great world power — its military might. Searching for the causes of the Crimean War debacle, many contemporary commentators pointed to the technical superiority of the French and, especially, the British armed forces: a steam-powered fleet, advanced weaponry (guns, cannons, and ammunitions), military engineering, and communications, to name but a few of the most often cited examples. Indeed, the emperor in St. Petersburg not infrequently learned about the latest developments on the war’s frontlines from British newspapers. Thanks to the telegraph lines built during the war, by April 1855 The Times had been printing the latest news from the Crimea nearly instantaneously, and, within just ten days or so after the publication, commercial steamers would deliver the London newspaper to the Russian capital. By contrast, special carriers dispatched by Russian commanders from Sebastopol took nearly a month or even longer (especially, in the fall and spring months, when what in Russia counted as roads became virtually impassable) to make the 2,200-kilometer journey to the headquarters on horseback. Needless to say, similar timetables applied to the delivery of necessary supplies, reserves, and orders dispatched from the headquarters to the opposing armies in the Crimea.

  • 63 Norov’s statement is cited in K. A. Timiriazev, “Probuzhdenie estestvoznaniia v tret’ei chetverti (...)
  • 64 N. Shelgunov, “Vospitanie kharaktera,” RS, 1865, 12(II): 175-210 (p. 175).

30Many contemporary commentators attributed this indisputable technical superiority to the extensive development of science in France and Britain over the course of the prior six decades. A few months after the death of Nicholas I, while the war was still being fought, the minister of people’s enlightenment Avraam Norov reportedly told his subordinates: “Science, gentlemen, has always been one among our most important needs, but now it is the first. If our enemies have an advantage over us, it is only due to the power of [their] knowledge.”63 Numerous contemporary publications, as well as later memoirs, expressed the same sentiment. As Shelgunov stressed on the pages of Russian Word: “The Crimean War has convinced us that Russian society lacks a lot [of things] to stand on the same level with Europe. [The war’s] failures and losses have forced us to look closely at what exactly we are lacking, and it turned out that we lack knowledge.”64

  • 65 For the attitude to science by “enlightened bureaucrats,” see Lincoln, In the Vanguard of Reform.
  • 66 For a general analysis of the Enlightenment ideas and ideals in post-Crimean Russia, see R. G. Eim (...)
  • 67 N. Serno-Solov’evich, “Ne trebuet li nyneshnee sostoianie znanii novoi nauki,” RS, 1865, 1 (I), p. (...)
  • 68 See RGIA, f. 774, op. 1 (1864), d. 12, ll. 117-18.

31Shelgunov’s conviction was widely shared by many diverse groups that formed the Russian educated public. Certainly, different groups and individuals had their own reasons for this new-found interest in, and the exalted appraisal of, science. For some, especially among Russia’s budding capitalists and “enlightened bureaucrats” (like Norov), it was the perceived importance of scientific knowledge in the modernization of the empire’s dysfunctional administration, antiquated military, and obsolete industry, agriculture, transport, communications, and trade.65 For others, it was the perception of science as the newest embodiment of the Enlightenment belief in reason as the motive force of human history, which, through the spread of knowledge and learning, would guide the people to “happiness and perfection.”66 Still for others, it was science’s role as the source of knowledge that could liberate the people from archaic traditions, ignorant superstitions, and religious dogmas — from “metaphysical platitudes,” as one Russian Word author euphemistically named them.67 This and other euphemisms employed by contemporary writers, however, did not fool the censor. As the 1864 censor report cited above emphasized, the Russian public turned to reading scientific literature “not with the goal of learning the positive conclusions of science per se, but in search of the repudiation of everything that constitutes another area that stands above science, the area of [religious] Faith,” which, according to the same report, “cannot but lead to shaky political views.”68

  • 69 For a general overview of the changes in the institutional structures and organizational principle (...)
  • 70 For a general analysis of scientific societies in Imperial Russia, see Joseph Bradley, Voluntary A (...)

32All of these reasons certainly played a part in the expansion of science in post-Crimean Russia.69 From the late 1850s through the 1860s, this expansion was most visibly manifested in the proliferation of new scientific societies, such as the Moscow Society of Russian Physicians (1858), the Russian Entomological Society (1859), the Kharkov Medical Society (1861), the Society of Enthusiasts for the Natural Sciences (1863), the Russian Society for the Acclimatization of Plants and Animals (1864), the Moscow Mathematical Society (1864), the Russian Technical Society (1866), and the Russian Chemical Society (1868).70 In the same period, the number of books and periodicals devoted to the natural sciences increased rapidly, as did the number of students who graduated annually from natural science departments at the empire’s universities (and a few other schools of higher learning, such as the IMSA, the Mining Institute, and the Technological Institute in St. Petersburg). According to some estimates, that number had more than tripled from 1856 to 1865. And it was this very faith in science that guided the profound reforms of the IMSA during Florinskii’s final years as a student.

  • 71 Numerous memoirs record that movement; see, for instance, E. N. Vodovozova, Na zare zhizni. Vospom (...)
  • 72 See, for instance, A. P. Katolinskii, Lektsii v Passazhe (SPb.: Imperatorskaia akademiia nauk, 186 (...)
  • 73 On the 1864 educational reform see, for instance, a classic account by N. V. Chekhov, Narodnoe obr (...)

33More important for our story, however, was the concurrent move of science from the rarefied circles of professional academics, inhabiting the small number of scientific institutions the enormous Russian Empire could boast at the time, to a variety of new venues, which made “science,” “knowledge,” and “learning” the buzzwords of the Russian educated public.71 In the late 1850s, lectures on scientific subjects became available to the public and spilled from university auditoria to theaters, bookstores, private study circles, Sunday schools, libraries, museums, and hospitals (recall, for instance, Evgenii Pelikan’s public lectures on biology, which Florinskii attended at the Hospital for Menial Workers in 1860).72 Such lectures were delivered not only by well-known professors, but also by students, school teachers, military officers, civil servants, and practicing doctors. Numerous visitors flocked to scientific museums and exhibits. As a result of the 1864 educational reforms, the natural sciences entered secondary school curricula, previously thoroughly dominated by the “classics” — languages, history, and literature.73 Publications on science subjects began to appear not only in the form of specialized monographs, textbooks, and articles in professional journals issued by government institutions and learned societies. New commercial presses and privately-owned periodicals, which mushroomed during the same decade, started to play a major role in publishing scientific texts.

  • 74 For examples of the use of this particular expression, see, for instance, M. Antonovich, “Piat’ po (...)
  • 75 For a general overview of the popularization of science in Russia, see E. A. Lazarevich, Populiari (...)
  • 76 See Vokrug sveta: Zhurnal zemlevedeniia, estestvennykh nauk, noveishikh otkrytii, izobretenii i na (...)
  • 77 Russian Word regularly carried this advertisement. See, for instance, the back matter of the Octob (...)
  • 78 See RGIA, f. 774, op. 1 (1864), d. 12, l. 117.

34A significant portion of these texts was written, compiled, translated from foreign languages, edited, and commented upon not by professional academics, but by journalists, litterateurs, teachers, physicians, civil servants, and students. The rapid growth of this “scientific-popular literature” (ucheno-populiarnaia literatura), as it was called at the time,74 clearly reflected mounting public demand. Ever sensitive to market trends Mavrikii Vol’f, founder and owner of one of the most successful private publishing houses, began to issue popular magazines, such as Around the World in 1861 and Nature and Earth Sciences in 1862.75 Edited by Florinskii’s classmate Pavel Ol’khin both magazines were devoted specifically to “earth studies, natural sciences, latest discoveries, inventions, and observations.”76 An 1863 advertisement for the latter magazine appended to Russian Word emphasized: “The names of the authors whose works have previously been published in this journal, such as [Carl] Vogt, [Charles] Darwin, [Jacob] Moleschott, [George H.] Lewes, and others, provide the very best indication of its character and direction.”77 An 1864 censorship report, “On the direction of periodicals,” duly noted: “Lately, our society took to literature on the natural sciences with particular eagerness.”78

  • 79 D. Pisarev, “Nereshennyi vopros (stat’ia tret’ia i posledniaia),” RS, 1864, 11(II): 1-64 (p. 52).

35Although from time to time practically all “thick” journals carried “scientific-popular” texts, Russian Word far outpaced all others, especially after its revival in 1863. “It could be said without a hint of exaggeration that the popularization of science constitutes the most important, world task of our century,” declared Pisarev, emphasizing that “a good popularizer, especially in Russia, could bring more benefits to society than a talented researcher.”79 Nearly all of the journal’s core contributors, including Blagosvetlov, Shelgunov, Shchapov, and Zaitsev, shared Pisarev’s conviction and actively participated in this endeavour. Their scientific-popular texts took two distinct forms: an extensive essay (often serialized in several consecutive issues) on a particular subject and a shorter review of a specific publication (mostly in Russian, but occasionally in foreign languages). In 1863-1865, Russian Word published no fewer than 39 lengthy essays and 63 book reviews on various scientific subjects.

  • 80 In late 1865, when Zaitsev left the journal, Tkachev took over this task.

36The sheer number and volume of scientific-popular texts clearly attest to their importance to the journal’s editor and contributors. As a rule, the essays were published in the first part of the journal, the “Belles-Lettres,” and, occasionally, as a stand-alone piece in the “Literary Review.” Sometimes they figured prominently on the journal’s opening pages, thus emphasizing and testifying to their particular significance. The shorter reviews were collected in the “Bibliographical Leaf,” which during this period was largely written by Zaitsev.80

  • 81 For details of Zaitsev’s biography, see Kuznetsov, Nigilisty.
  • 82 [V. Zaitsev], “Bibliograficheskii listok,” RS, 1864, 10(II): 91.

37A student of the Moscow University Medical School, Zaitsev moved to St. Petersburg for family reasons in December 1862.81 He continued his education by attending classes at the IMSA and soon joined the Russian Word editorial team. He quickly became one of the journal’s leading literary critics, and, thanks to his medical studies, a “staff” reviewer of various scientific publications. In one of his reviews, Zaitsev candidly explained his approach to this task: “journalistic reviews [of a publication] could acquire their own separate significance, if, relegating purely bibliographical goals to a secondary plane, they expound certain ideas, which — though only tangentially touching upon the reviewed publication — have their own independent importance.”82 What were those ideas that Zaitsev and his fellow writers expounded upon in their scientific-popular texts and what “independent importance” did they have?

38The subject matter of these texts points to possible answers to these questions, for not all of the natural sciences found equal place on the pages of Russian Word. Unlike, other “thick” journals (Annals of the Fatherland, for instance), Russian Word carried no essays and very few reviews dealing with mathematics, physics, astronomy, and chemistry, i. e. those disciplines that studied the “physical” universe. By contrast, fields that focused primarily on the “human” universe, such as biology, geography, physiology, psychology, medicine, hygiene, and anthropology, commanded the close attention of the journal’s authors. This particular focus suggests that, unlike for Vol’f’s magazines, for Russian Word, the popularization of science was not an end in itself. It was primarily a means to tackle a variety of other issues.

  • 83 See Varustin, Zhurnal, and Kuznetsov, Nigilisty.

39As historians of the journal have noted, discussions of science in Russian Word often served as a substitute for discussions of contemporary politics that became virtually impossible under the censorship pressure.83 They promoted the utilitarian view of science as a tool of modernisation (of industry, agriculture, trade, state administration, transport, and armed forces). They also served as a vehicle for advancing Enlightenment ideals of education, learning, and knowledge and advocating for a “materialistic worldview” to undermine religion, one of the three cornerstones of the Russian Empire, clearly expressed in its official slogan — “Orthodoxy, Autocracy, Nationality (Pravoslavie, Samoderzhavie, Narodnost’).”

40Yet, first and foremost, such discussions aimed at substantiating the role of the natural sciences as the foundation for understanding contemporary (especially, Russian) society and for discovering “natural” laws that govern its history, economics, and politics and that must ultimately define its future. In an 1863 article titled “The Foundations of Social Life,” Shelgunov clearly articulated this aim:

  • 84 N. Shelgunov, “Nachala obshchestvennogo byta,” RS, 1863, 11-12(III): 1-51 (p. 41).

Ultimately, there is only one [kind of] knowledge — the study of nature, i. e. [the study] of its constituent matter and its properties. Humans are only a part of nature, hence, without studying nature, [one] cannot learn the laws that govern both separate individuals and entire societies. This is why the natural sciences have lately acquired such significance and have attracted the attention of all thinking people.84

  • 85 For a rather superficial analysis of this view in Pisarev’s writings, see N. N. Zabelina, “Osmysle (...)

41The very titles (to say nothing of the contents) of numerous other publications appearing on the pages of Russian Word, such as Zaitsev’s “The Natural Sciences and Jurisprudence” (1863), Shelgunov’s “The Conditions of Progress” (1863), Petr Bibikov’s “The Boundaries of Positive Knowledge” (1864), Nikolai Serno-Solov’evich’s “Does the Contemporary State of Knowledge Require a New [Social] Science?” (1865), and Shchapov’s “The Natural Sciences and the People’s Economy” (1865-1866), clearly demonstrate that for the “literary-political” Russian Word, science had become “political” in more than one sense. In the views of its authors, science held the keys to answering all the questions and solving all the problems in Russian life.85

  • 86 A useful introduction to the concept of “scientific revolution” could be found in Steven Shapin, T (...)

42A historical coincidence made it possible for Russian Word contributors to utilize science for “political” purposes. In the middle decades of the nineteenth century, just as Russia was preparing and then implementing its Great Reforms, several “scientific revolutions” unfolded in western Europe.86 These revolutions redefined science as an intellectual and social activity aimed at acquiring knowledge about nature in all of its manifestations. They erected rigid epistemic and social boundaries — embedded in the explicit practices of observation, measurement, and experiment, undergirding “objective,” “exact,” “real,” “scientific” method — that separated science from other, “subjective,” “ambiguous,” “fictional,” and “speculative” forms of inquiry, such as religion, philosophy, and literature. They involved the emergence of the scientist as the sole purveyor of “true” knowledge that need not be simply taken on faith, but could be tested, verified, and proved (or disproved) by other scientists. A series of startling discoveries made during this period, ranging from the laws of thermodynamics to the synthesis of organic compounds from inorganic ingredients, convincingly demonstrated the material — physical and chemical — unity of nature. More important, however, new discoveries firmly placed humans into nature — not as its God’s anointed kings, but as its constituent part, subject to the same laws that govern all of nature’s other parts, be they stars, rocks, plants, or animals.

43From the 1840s through the 1860s, a new field of “experimental physiology” demonstrated the physical and chemical unity of humankind with the rest of the universe, presenting the human body as a physical and chemical machine dependent on the flows of energy and built from the same chemical elements and structural units (the cells) that comprised all other organisms. The budding field of “experimental psychology” began to bridge the gap between human and animal “souls,” indicating that the faculties of reason, will, and speech were not exclusive, God-given human qualities, but mere extensions of similar capacities in other animals. The last and possibly the most impactful field to develop during this period was “evolutionary biology,” which strongly suggested that humans were not God’s favorite creation, but merely a branch of the animal kingdom that had evolved over countless millennia in the process of natural selection and the struggle for existence, as did all other now-living organisms.

  • 87 Blagosvetlov even invited Vogt to become a “staffscience writer” for Russian Word. See “Ob” iavlen (...)

44It was exactly these three areas — human physiology, psychology, and evolution — that became a special focus of Russian Word’s authors. They promoted and debated the works of biologist Darwin, geologist Charles Lyell, anthropologist Armand de Quatrefages, geographer Ritter, cytologist Matthias J. Schleiden, physician Virchow, physiologist Carl Vogt,87 and psychologist Wilhelm Wundt. They regularly reviewed and referred to the writings by such well-known authors as Alfred Brehm, Ludwig Büchner, Thomas Henry Huxley, George H. Lewes, Jacob Moleschott, and Carl G. W. Vollmer (under the pseudonym “Dr. W. F. A. Zimmerman”), who actively popularized the latest developments in these three fields. These works became their sacred texts, while the authors of these texts became the apostles of their new-found faith in the ability of the natural sciences to solve all social problems and cure all societal ills.

  • 88 Zaitsev’s statement is cited in the memoirs of Sergei Kravchinskii (1851-1895), an active particip (...)
  • 89 [G. Z. Eliseev], “Vnutrennee obozrenie,” Sovremennik, 1864, 7 (II), p. 90.

45A decade later, referring to his work in Russian Word, Zaitsev declared passionately, “every one of us would have gladly gone to the scaffold and given his head for Moleschott and Darwin.”88 This fanatical zeal clearly did not stem from specific scientific contributions by Darwin and Moleschott, no matter how important they might have been in and of themselves. Rather, the names of these and other eminent scientists and science popularizers became potent symbols of an entirely new worldview generated by the scientific revolutions of the mid-nineteenth century. As a commentator in The Contemporary perceptively observed in 1864: “the revolution (perevorot) effected by the natural sciences in the worldview of [our] society — in its opinions, notions, mores, in a word, in its inner world — is likely even greater and more fertile than all the material goods and comforts [they had brought about].”89 This scientific worldview discarded the traditional answers offered by scholastic religion, speculative philosophy, and fictional literature to the key existential questions that had boggled humanity’s best minds from time immemorial: Who are we? Where did we come from? Where are we going? It provided clear-cut naturalistic answers: humans are a particular kind of animal, which had evolved from some other, “lower” animals and which, in the course of time, will either go extinct, or “progress” further.

46This new worldview offered a possibility of answering numerous questions about the life and death of not only individual human beings, but also societies, states, civilizations, and humanity as a whole. Its logic seemed incontrovertible. Humans are a part of nature and, hence, knowledge generated by the natural sciences must be applicable to all phenomena of human life. Not only individual — biological, physiological, psychological — life, but also social — economic, political, moral — life must obey the inexorable “laws of nature,” which the natural sciences had discovered and were still discovering almost daily.

  • 90 For a dated, but still useful overview of the historical development of “social science” in Russia (...)
  • 91 N. S. Kashkin, “Idealisticheskii i pozitivnyi metody v sotsiologii,” in P. E. Shchegolev, ed., Pet (...)
  • 92 For a history of the Petrashevskii circle and the trial in English, see J. H. Seddon, The Petrashe (...)
  • 93 N. G. Chernyshevskii, “Antropologicheskii printsip v filosofii,” in idem, Sochineniia v 2-kh tomak (...)
  • 94 N. Serno-Solov’evich, “Ne trebuet li nyneshnee sostoianie znanii novoi nauki,” RS, 1865, 1 (I): 12 (...)

47Many Russian intellectuals of the time began to advocate for the transfer of methods, insights, and knowledge from the natural sciences to the fledgling “science of society.”90 As early as 1848, Nikolai Kashkin, a member of the “Petrashevskii circle,” a study and debate society devoted to the spread of socialist ideas whose membership included St. Petersburg young intellectuals (such as Dostoevsky), delivered a speech to his “co-conspirators” gathered at his apartment for their regular Friday dinner. He declared that “owing to the natural sciences, man has learned the laws of nature; what remains is to apply them to the science of society. When man accomplishes this, humanity will have the law of happiness and perfection.”91 This speech figured as the main proof of Kashkin’s “crimes” at the Petrashevskii trial and cost him four years of hard labor in Siberia.92 A decade later, Nikolai Chernyshevskii expounded similar ideas in print, in his 1860 article “Anthropological Principle in Philosophy” published, though anonymously, in The Contemporary. Chernyshevskii noted pointedly that, unlike the English word “science” that referred exclusively to the natural sciences, its Russian analogue “nauka” was applied to all fields of scholarship. But, he stated, “In the not too distant past, the moral sciences (nravstvennye nauki) could not actually possess the content that would justify the title of science they have been given.” “Now the situation has changed considerably,” he continued, “the natural sciences have developed to such a degree that [they] provide a mass of material for the exact solution of moral questions.”93 Five years later, in an article published in the first 1865 issue of Russian Word, Serno-Solov’evich argued for the urgent need to create a “social science” (obshchestvennaia nauka) modeled after and based on the natural sciences. Surveying the current state of research and theoretical work in economics, jurisprudence, history, criminology, and demography, he came to the conclusion that “between a social science and the natural sciences must occur — the sooner, the better — an exchange of their main strengths, i. e. the former should borrow from the latter their perfect method and, in turn, give the latter its [own] perfect aspirations.” “No economist, no historian could possibly continue their research,” he insisted, “without, at least, some basic knowledge of the natural sciences.”94

  • 95 At the time, Pisarev was writing reviews and editing a bibliographic section in Sunrise (Rassvet), (...)
  • 96 See G. Geine [H. Heine], “Atta Troll, perevod. D. I. Pisarev,” RS, 1860, 12(I): 1-62; and D. I. Pi (...)
  • 97 See D. I. Pisarev, “Ulichnye tipy. A. Golitsynskogo, s 20-iu risunkami Pikkolo. Izd. K. Rikhau. M. (...)

48A leading knight in Russian Word’s crusade to promote and popularize the natural sciences was Pisarev. Blagosvetlov met the twenty-year-old student of his own alma mater, the “historical-philological” school of St. Petersburg University, sometime in the fall of 1860. On Polonskii’s recommendation, Pisarev brought for the editor’s consideration his translation of Heinrich Heine’s poem “Atta Troll.” After a lengthy conversation, Blagosvetlov bought the poem, but urged the young man to write literary criticism instead of poetry. Pisarev enthusiastically agreed.95 The December 1860 issue of Russian Word carried both the poem and Pisarev’s first review of a collection of poetry translations.96 Obviously, Blagosvetlov saw Pisarev’s potential and liked his writing style: beginning with the February 1861 issue, Russian Word carried Pisarev’s reviews of various publications,97 as well as his articles on historical and philosophical subjects, in practically every issue.

  • 98 This long-winded essay was Pisarev’s “candidate” dissertation written in the early spring. See D. (...)
  • 99 D. I. Pisarev, “Fiziologicheskie eskizy Moleshota,” RS, 1861, 7 (II): 23-53. For the German origin (...)
  • 100 Apparently, Viktor L. Khankin, a practicing doctor and the journal’s “staff” reviewer of scientifi (...)
  • 101 D. I. Pisarev, “Protsess zhizni (Physiologische Briefe, von Carl Vogt),” RS, 1861, 9 (II): 1-26. F (...)
  • 102 D. I. Pisarev, “Fiziologicheskie kartiny (po Biukhneru),” RS, 1862, 2 (I): 1-51. For the German or (...)

49However, in July, along with a more than 100-page-long essay on the Apollonius of Tyana,98 Pisarev published a lengthy overview of Jacob Moleschott’s Physiologische Skizzenbuch (Physiological Sketches) that had come out in German only a few months prior.99 It is unclear from available materials what prompted Pisarev, who had had no training in the natural sciences whatsoever, to write on a subject so far removed from his personal interests and expertise.100 But, from this time on, he would divide his attention almost equally between reviewing belle-lettres and science publications. Two months later, under the title “The Process of Life,” the journal carried Pisarev’s digest of the latest edition of Vogt’s monumental Physiologische Briefe (Physiological Letters).101 And in February 1862, Pisarev published another lengthy article, titled “Physiological Pictures,” based on the first volume of Büchner’s Physiologische Bilder, which had appeared just a few months earlier.102

50Taken together, Pisarev’s overviews of the three books presented the latest achievements in the understanding of the physical and chemical foundations of “vegetative life,” — “das vegetative Leben,” Pisarev put in brackets, lest his readers misunderstood the term. He stressed that in their analyses of basic physiological processes — breathing, digestion, and blood circulation — the three authors viewed the human body as both a complex mechanism and a chemical laboratory, which functions according to known physical and chemical laws. These laws, Pisarev emphasized, leave no place for mysterious “vital forces” and similarly outdated “folk traditions and superstitions.” He astutely summarized Moleschott, Vogt, and Büchner’s views by defining “vegetative life” as “nothing more than a constant change of matter, while preserving a certain form” [9: 8]. In each essay, Pisarev emphasized that many specific questions regarding the basic mechanisms of life so far remain unanswered, but in time the science of physiology would be able to find the answers. He was absolutely certain that similar physical and chemical processes (i. e. the exchange of matter and energy between the organism and its environment) would soon explain not only “vegetative life” but also “animal life, i. e. perceptions and processing of impressions, the work of the nervous system” [9: 6]. He sympathetically assessed, for example, Vogt’s “attempts to bring together the fields of psychology and physiology” by explaining the role of the nervous system in blood circulation. “We can assume and hope,” he concluded, “that in due time such notions as psychical life and psychological phenomena will [also] be disaggregated into their constituent parts. Their fate has been decided: they will go the way of the philosopher’s stone, the vital elixir, and the vital force… Words and illusions die out, facts remain” [9: 15].

  • 103 Of course, the analogy between social and biological “organisms” has a very long history, but in t (...)
  • 104 N. Shelgunov, “Ubytochnost’ neznaniia,” RS, 1863, 4 (I): 1-59; 5 (I): 1-40. Further direct quotati (...)

51Pisarev’s essays effectively popularized the newest physiological knowledge, stressing its importance for medicine and the correct “realist” understanding of the human body. But it was Shelgunov who first attempted to apply this knowledge of “vegetative life” to “social life.”103 Two months after the last of Pisarev’s essays had appeared, Shelgunov published in two consecutive issues of the journal a 100-page article on “The Unprofitability of Ignorance.”104 The bulk of his treatise dealt with the role that lack of knowledge had presumably played in defining various phases in human history. But his approach to human societies was decidedly “physiological.” He was convinced that:

As physiology defines the conditions necessary for the development of every separate organism, defines what is harmful and what is useful for it and what conditions enable its separate, continuous, and healthy existence, so too history — the physiology and pathology of the collective man — defines those inescapable laws that regulate the healthy development of a social organism [4: 5].

52Physiology tells us, Shelgunov emphasized, that “human life is completely dependent on and completely defined by the necessary conditions of the organism itself and its mutual relations with the external environment.” “Society is an assemblage of separate organisms, it is a collective human-being,” he postulated, “the more advanced is every individual, the more strength and the larger capital of intellect, talents, and knowledge the assemblage has, while the weaker and poorer are the individuals, the weaker is the collective organism” [5: 24]. But “an isolated physiological fact” about the life of an individual, such as the fact that humans need food to survive, he explained, “says nothing about the impact of food shortage on the entire society, or its separate parts. Here to the rescue comes statistics — this physiology of the collective human-being” [5: 25].

  • 105 [N. Shelgunov], “Usloviia progressa,” RS, 1863, 6(I): 1-26.

53Developing further his analogy between a “separate physiological human being” and a “social organism,” in the next article that appeared in the June issue under the title “The Conditions of Progress,” Shelgunov attempted to describe those “physiological laws” which could account for the differences in the “progress” of such social organisms as nations.105 As the difference between “a genius and an idiot” is obviously defined by “different qualities of their brains,” he proclaimed, so too the difference between developed and undeveloped nations must be defined by the differences in their “collective brains.” He rejected the customary explanation of national differences as the result of differences in food and/or climate, arguing that a “national type” remains unchanged, despite the people’s movement to different climates or consumption of different foods. For Shelgunov, a “national type” was defined by “intellectual and moral strengths,” which derive directly from the development of “brains and nerves.”

54Since the most important conditions for such development in an individual, according to Shelgunov, are “personal freedom” and “material wellbeing,” the same conditions would define the development of collective “brains and nerves” in a nation. However, since only a certain number of individuals in the course of their life fully develop their brains and put them to good use in the “advancement of civilization,” he surmised, it is the relative number of such individuals in a nation that defines the nation’s “collective brain.” To illustrate this point, Shelgunov actually calculated the total mass of brains in the populations of Britain, France, Austria, and Prussia. Then he estimated the number of individuals who, in his opinion, contribute to the national development (including in this category what we today would call a “middle class”) and the total mass of their brains. By dividing the first number by the second he created an index of “national intellectual development” and discussed the means by which this index could be increased, thus ensuring the progress of not only separate nations, but also humanity as a whole.

  • 106 The literature on the reception of Darwin and his works in Russia is quite voluminous. For English (...)

55Yet the application of physiological knowledge to the understanding of human societies could take the Russian Word authors only so far. The newest addition to the scientific revolutions — Darwin’s concept of the origin of species — offered seemingly a much better opportunity for the transfer of knowledge generated by the natural sciences to the understanding of human nature and human societies.106

Socializing Darwin

  • 107 On Bronn and his translation of Darwin’s works, see Sander Gliboff, H. G. Bronn, Ernst Haeckel, an (...)
  • 108 On Royer and her involvement with translating Darwin’s works, see Geneviève Fraisse, Clémence Roye (...)
  • 109 See Charles Darwin, Über die Entstehung der Arten im Thier-und Pflanzen-Reich durch natürliche Züc (...)
  • 110 Anon. [Ed. Claparède], “Darvin i ego teoriia proiskhozhdeniia vidov,” Biblioteka dlia chteniia, 18 (...)
  • 111 See, Charl’s Darvin [Charles Darwin], O proiskhozhdenii vidov v tsarstvakh zhivotnom i rastitel’no (...)

56Published in London in late 1859, under the title On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, Or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life, Darwin’s opus magnum first became popularly known in Russia through its 1860 German and 1862 French translations prepared by Heinrich Georg Bronn107 and Clémence Royer,108 respectively.109 To be exact, the very first extensive introduction of Darwin’s theory to the Russian educated public came from the Russian translation of a French-language review of his book by eminent Swiss anatomist and zoologist René-Édouard Claparède. This voluminous review appeared (without identifying either its author, or its Russian translator) in the last two 1861 issues of Reading Library, a popular literary journal.110 But the first Russian translation of The Origin by Sergei A. Rachinskii, professor of botany at Moscow University, appeared only two years later, in early 1864.111

  • 112 Darwin, Origin, p. 488.
  • 113 See, for example, Charles Lyell, Geological Evidences of the Antiquity of Man (London: John Murray (...)

57Presenting his “abridged” concept to the world, Darwin focused exclusively on “the origin of species in the plant and animal kingdoms,” as both the German and the Russian translations of his book emphasized in their very titles. He merely noted in passing at the very end of the book that his concept could also throw “light… on the origin of man and his history.”112 Long before Darwin himself would shed that light in his 1871 The Descent of Man, almost immediately after the publication of Origin, Lyell, Huxley, Vogt, and many others took on the task. In just a few years, they demonstrated the “antiquity of man,” striking anatomical similarities between humans and apes, and the “unity of the human type.”113 New paleontological, embryological, and anatomical evidence uncovered and compiled by these scientists strongly suggested that humans had evolved from ape-like ancestors over the course of hundreds, if not thousands, of millennia as a result of natural, sexual, and, perhaps, even artificial selection arising from the continuous struggle for existence. This evidence also implied that the processes of divergence and extinction, which, according to Darwin, accompany the origin of new species in plants and animals, had also occurred in the course of human evolution. It indicated that all of the processes, conditions, factors, and mechanisms that Darwin had discovered in his study of plant and animal species — the “laws” of evolution — had likely been at work in the past history of the human species and would probably continue to play a role in the future development of humankind.

  • 114 See V. Z [aitsev], “Bibliograficheskii listok,” RS, 1864, 1 (II): 15-21. The book came out in the (...)
  • 115 Indeed in the preceding issue, Zaitsev had reviewed the first installment of Carl Vogt’s Lectures (...)

58Darwin’s theory, as well as works by his followers, became a special focus of attention for the Russian Word authors. Rachinskii’s translation of Origin came out in the first week of January 1864, a fact enthusiastically greeted barely a week later on the pages of the journal’s first issue of that year.114 In a six-page announcement, Zaitsev excitedly proclaimed that “Darwin’s work is destined to create a new epoch in science, and, by demolishing the crumbling old foundations of the natural sciences, to open for them the unlimited [new] horizon ahead.” He foresaw “numerous new discoveries, which till now have been beyond the limits of science and human efforts,… made possible by Darwin’s theory.” Zaitsev illustrated “the exactness of observations and the tireless checking of experiments,” which, in his opinion, “constitute the supreme qualities of the naturalist,” by excerpting from Darwin’s book a section on the slave instinct in ants. He lamented the “poor quality” of the Russian translation, noting that Rachinskii’s text “sometimes requires its own translation into understandable Russian.” He promised that “in the subsequent issues of Russian Word, we would try to present the essence of this new theory and to highlight its application that had already been made by the London professor [T. H.] Huxley in his wonderful lectures On the Place of Man in Nature.”115

  • 116 V. Z [aitsev], “Bibliograficheskii listok. Chelovek i ego mesto v prirode. Lektsii K. Fogta. Vyp. (...)
  • 117 D. I. Pisarev, “Progress v mire zhivotnykh i rastenii,” RS, 1864, 4 (I): 1-52; 5 (I): 43-70; 6 (I) (...)

59Russian Word made good on this promise. Already in the March “Bibliographical Leaf” Zaitsev alerted his readers to the appearance of two Russian editions of Vogt’s Lectures on Man, His Place in Creation and in the History of the Earth, issued nearly simultaneously by two different publishers.116 More important, however, starting with the April issue, the journal published five (!) lengthy essays by Pisarev under the common title “Progress in the World of Animals and Plants.”117 The essays totaled 214 pages — more than half the length of Darwin’s entire book in its Russian translation — and offered the readers not just the “essence of Darwin’s theory,” but in fact much of the content of his book.

  • 118 Pisarev did not have access to the English original but, even though he was incarcerated in the Pe (...)
  • 119 Pisarev most certainly was not alone in popularizing Darwin’s book. After the appearance of Rachin (...)

60Pisarev carefully explained Darwin’s notions of natural, artificial, and sexual selection (vybor)118 and the “struggle for life.” He detailed all of the extensive evidence (anatomical, geographical, geological, embryological, etc.) that Darwin had compiled in support of his concept. More to the point, Pisarev did “translate” Rachinskii’s text into “readable Russian.” His easy-going and lively style certainly made Darwin’s ideas and arguments much more accessible and comprehensible to a general reader than Rachinskii’s academic translation (which Pisarev did not neglect to criticize bitterly in his essays). Given the journal’s circulation, it would not be too far off the mark to suggest that many more people in Russia first learned about Darwin’s theory from Pisarev’s essays than from Rachinskii’s translation.119

  • 120 The available literature on the notion of progress in history is vast. For a helpful introduction, (...)
  • 121 See [Ch. Darwin], De l’origine des espèces, ou des lois du progrès chez les êtres organisés par Ch (...)

61Although in his treatise Pisarev stayed mostly within the contents of Darwin’s book and did not venture into its possible “social applications,” one can argue that he effectively “socialized” Darwin’s entire concept already in the very title chosen for his essays: “progress in the world of animals and plants.” As Shelgunov’s 1863 article on “The Conditions of Progress” discussed on the preceding pages makes abundantly clear, at the time the word “progress” was first and foremost applied to human history to describe the perceived stages in its unfolding from “low,” “primitive,” and “barbaric” to “higher,” “more advanced,” and “more civilized” human societies.120 Pisarev’s title implied that the progression from “lower” to “higher” was indeed the essence of Darwin’s Origin. As he put it in the text: “progress is a direct consequence of the struggle and competition [for existence]” [7: 14]. It seems quite likely that Pisarev’s focus on “progress” was inspired by the French version of Darwin’s Origin produced by Royer, who actually “translated” the book’s original subtitle “The Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life” as “des lois du progrès chez les êtres organisés” (the laws of progress in organized beings).121

  • 122 For a detailed examination of the notion of progress in biology, see Michael Ruse, Monad to Man: T (...)
  • 123 In the first instance, Darwin stated: “The inhabitants of each successive period in the world’s hi (...)

62Darwin himself, however, used the word “progress” less than twenty times in the 500-plus pages of his book, and in most cases it denoted nothing more than a forward movement of time or human thought, as in such expressions as “the progress of geology” and “the progress of events.”122 Only twice in the entire volume, first in its “summary” and second in its “conclusions,” did he use the word to mean development from a “lower” to a “higher” form.123

  • 124 On anthropomorphic explanations of animal behavior, see N. L. Krementsov, “Chelovek i zhivotnoe: k (...)

63Pisarev’s title then unobtrusively equated the origin of species in animals and plants, as described and analyzed by Darwin (and interpreted by Rachinskii and Royer), with the “progress” of human history, as described and analyzed by contemporary historians such as, for instance, Pisarev’s favorites Henry T. Buckle and August Comte, or Blagosvetlov’s favorite Thomas B. Macaulay. “Progress undoubtedly exists in the organic world,” Pisarev stated bluntly, “this fact is indisputable” [7: 35]. He, however, did not apply Darwin’s theory to explain human history. Instead he used human history to reinterpret Darwin’s descriptions and explanations of certain facts and processes observed in nature. Not surprisingly, such anthropomorphic reinterpretations appeared particularly “fruitful” in Pisarev’s retelling of Darwin’s analysis of animal instincts, especially the instincts of such “social” insects as ants, to which Pisarev devoted the entire fourth essay (i. e. more than twenty per cent of his treatise: 46 out of 214 pages of its text).124

  • 125 See Pisarev, “Ocherki iz istorii truda,” RS, 1863, 9 (I): 69-134; 11-12(I): 55-117. The article cr (...)

64Pisarev managed to ascribe “personal intelligence, individual inventiveness, the variety of characters and preferences, rational upbringing, the succession of generations that leads to the change of habits, a developed social life with mistakes and deviations, the ability to exploit various situations, [and] the capacity to participate with the conscious efforts of reason in the progress of its own kind” to ants [7: 46]. Furthermore, he applied to ants the same categories he had used in his 1863 “Essays on the History of Labor”:125

The principle of the division of labor and the unification of efforts manifests itself everywhere where a society is formed and where collective labor appears. Who forms the society and who labors — peoples or animals — is completely irrelevant. The laws of labor and the characters of association remain the same under all conditions [7: 23].

65Admitting, diffidently, that he did not know why Darwin himself had not done so, he simply equated the “civilizations” of humans and animals: “When we look at certain phenomena of ants’ social life without our prejudices, then we discover the remarkable meaning of these phenomena and then we understand that conscious progress and purely historical development constitute the unalienable possession of all higher kinds (porod) of the animal kingdom” [7: 38].

  • 126 Pisarev explains that the label had been introduced as a pejorative by the German opponents of Dar (...)
  • 127 See, Fridrikh Rolle, Karla Darvina uchenie o proiskhozhdenii vidov v tsarstve rastenii i zhivotnyk (...)

66Pisarev concluded his treatise with a highly praising overview of the latest additions to “Darwinist”126 literature, such as German geologist Friedrich Rolle’s popular interpretation of Darwin’s concept and German philologist August Schleicher’s extension of Darwin’s evolutionary principles to linguistics, both of which had just appeared in Russian translation.127 He was especially impressed with Schleicher’s use of Darwin’s concept as a fruitful way to understand the emergence and development of different human languages. Reiterating the major theme of his own “scientific popular” texts, Pisarev particularly stressed the philologist’s “deep respect for the natural sciences” and his suggestion that their methods “be applied more and more to the study of languages,” thus, emphasizing once again the utility of Darwin’s theory in the understanding of “man’s history.”

  • 128 G. B[lagosvetlov], “Bibliograficheskii listok: Edinstvo roda chelovecheskogo, Katrfazha. Perevod A (...)
  • 129 G. B [lagosvetlov], “Bibliograficheskii listok: T. Geksli. O prichinakh iavlenii v organicheskoi p (...)
  • 130 V. Z[aitsev], “Bibliografichekii listok: Karla Darvina uchenie o proiskhozhdenii vidov v tsarstve (...)
  • 131 [V. Zaitsev], “Bibliograficheskii listok. Mesto cheloveka v tsarstve zhivotnom. Sochinenie Tomasa (...)
  • 132 N. V. Shelgunov, “Razvitie chelovecheskogo tipa v geologicheskom otnoshenii,” RS, 1865, 3 (I): 218 (...)

67Russian Word supplemented Pisarev’s essays by printing in its “Bibliographical Leaf” reviews of books aimed at popularizing and/or developing further Darwin’s ideas. In the same April issue that carried Pisarev’s first essay, Blagosvetlov reviewed the Russian translations of two books by Quatrefages, on “the unity of men” and on “metamorphoses in men and animals,” noting pointedly that “after the publication of Darwin’s book, we should consider [these] works to be completely superfluous and, taking into account [their] exceedingly bad translation, useless in our literature.”128 In July, he enthusiastically greeted the appearance in Russian of Huxley’s lectures “On our Knowledge of the Causes of the Phenomena of Organic Nature.”129 In August, Zaitsev praised “the clarity of expression, the abundance and excellent selection of facts” in Rolle’s interpretation of Darwin’s theory, though noting numerous “inaccuracies and absurdities” in its recent Russian translation.130 In October, he alerted the readers to the publication in Russian of Huxley’s Evidence as to Man’s Place in Nature.131 Furthermore, in March 1865, the journal complemented Pisarev’s essays with a lengthy article by Shelgunov, which summarized the materials presented by Lyell, Huxley, and Vogt in support of Darwin’s assertion regarding “the origin of man and his history.”132 Published under the innocuous title “The Development of the Human Type in Relation to Geology,” the article discussed the newest paleontological and archeological evidence that extended Darwin’s conclusions regarding the Origin of Species to the evolution of the human species.

  • 133 The literature on the history of “social Darwinism” is vast. Useful introductions to the topic can (...)
  • 134 See [Ch. Darwin], De l’origine des espèces, ou des lois du progrès chez les êtres organisés par Ch (...)
  • 135 Clémence Royer, “Préface,” in De l’origine des espèces, ou des lois du progrès chez les êtres orga (...)
  • 136 Ibid., p. lxi. A few years later, she would elaborate and further develop her ideas in a nearly 60 (...)

68Yet the attempts to apply Darwin’s evolutionary views to the understanding of social issues — what later would be termed “social Darwinism” — had begun even before all this evidence was collected and interpreted,133 and the Russian reading public was well aware of this fact. One of the first to articulate the implications of Darwin’s concept for “man’s history” was its French translator Clémence Royer.134 In a sixty-page “Preface” to her 1862 translation of Origin, she praised “Mr. Darwin’s theory” as “especially fruitful” in its “humanitarian and moral consequences.” Indeed, she hailed it as “the natural social science par excellence,” “the codex for living beings of every race and every age” that “contains in itself a philosophy of nature and a philosophy of humanity.” Royer claimed that when we apply “the law of natural selection (l’élection naturelle) to humanity,” it “becomes surprisingly, painfully obvious just how flawed our political and civic laws, as well as our religious morals, are.”135 She pointed to the “unintelligent protection” that contemporary societies accorded to “the weak, the sick, the incurable, and the wicked,” as the most obvious example. In her opinion, such social protection runs contrary to the “law of natural selection” by thwarting the struggle for existence (concurrence vitale) and allowing the least favorable individuals of the species to survive and multiply. Extending to humans Darwin’s discussion of variations in plants and animals as the major source of evolution, she was quick to equate variability (variabilité) with inequality (inégalité), asserting that “nothing is more obvious than the inequality of different [human] races.” “The races are not separate species,” she admitted, “but they are well-marked and very unequal varieties.” Therefore, she insisted, “we should think twice before proclaiming political and civic equality in a nation composed of a minority of Indo-Germans and a majority of Mongols or Negros.” Royer urged the “legislators” to consider seriously the implications of Darwin’s theory and strongly advised against the “mixing of different races,” which could result in the superior races being “absorbed” by the lower ones and, thus, in the lowering of “the average level of the species.”136

  • 137 See Thomas F. Glick, “The Impact of Darwin on Ideas about Race in the US, UK, France, Germany, and (...)

69As historians of biology and anthropology have noted, Darwin’s Origin profoundly reshaped the old debate over such issues as the monogenic or polygenic origins of humankind and the interrelations among human races by reformulating its key questions.137 Were human races different species or merely varieties, subspecies of the same species? Did they originate in a particular locale from a single common ancestor and then spread over the world? Or did the human races emerge and evolve in different “centers of origin” from several different progenitors? Were present-day races the result of divergence of some “primordial” human species accompanied by the extinction of intermediate forms? These and many other questions arising from Darwin’s concept now guided new research into comparative anatomy, embryology, paleontology, geography, and the taxonomy of the human species.

  • 138 The literature on the history of racial thought and racial debates is immense. Useful introduction (...)

70Royer’s “Preface” showed just how easily these scientific questions could be translated into a political question about the “natural” superiority of the “white,” “European,” “Caucasian” race over all other races.138 At the time of Royer’s writing, this political question acquired a particular significance as the liberation of African slaves and the abolition of slavery became a rallying cry of the north in the American Civil War. But it attained special import in post-Crimean Russia. Even before the start of the civil war, discussions of slavery in the United States on the pages of Russian “thick” journals had served as a thinly veiled surrogate for the open debates about Russia’s serfdom and the emancipation of the serfs, which had been impossible under the watchful eyes of the censors.

  • 139 See extensive historical examinations of this subject in I. K. Mal’kova, “Istoriia i politika SShA (...)
  • 140 See G. Bicher-Stou, “Khizhina diadi Toma ili Zhizn’ negrov v nevol’nich’ikh shtatakh Severnoi Amer (...)
  • 141 See A. Pal’mer, Khizhina diadi Toma. Povest’gospozhi Stove, raskazannaia detiam (SPb.: M. O. Vol’f (...)
  • 142 See M. L. Mikhailov, “Iz Longfello. Pesni o negrakh,” Sovremennik, 1861, 3: 267-78; and V. A. Obru (...)
  • 143 A. Toporov, “Nevol’nichestvo v Iuzhno-Amerikanskikh Shtatakh,” RS, 1861, 4(II): 1-28 (p. 26).

71North American slavery and abolitionism commanded the close attention of the Russian educated public.139 To give but one example, two different translations of the most famous abolitionist novel — Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin (1852) — appeared in late 1857, simultaneously, as supplements to both Russian Herald and The Contemporary.140 The same year, Vol’f published an abridged children’s version of the novel in book format.141 In the horrors of slavery vividly depicted in the novel, Russian readers readily recognized the sufferings of the Russian serfs. Quite tellingly, the same March 1861 issue of The Contemporary, which carried a nearly 100-page excerpt from the just announced imperial edict on the emancipation of the serfs, also included a complete translation of Henry W. Longfellow’s Poems of Slavery (1842) under the title “The Songs of Negroes” and an extensive digest of John S. C. Abbott’s travelogue South and North (1860) under the title “Slavery in North America.”142 As the author of the digest pointedly remarked, “Under the circumstances in which Russia finds herself now, of course, no other kind of literature could be more interesting to her than the books dealing with the relative importance of forced and free labor.” Expectedly, Russian Word also responded to this interest. In its April 1861 issue the journal carried a lengthy article on the history of slavery and abolitionism in the United States, which perceptively concluded that “the most enduring foundation of slavery is white Americans’ scorn for the black race.”143

  • 144 N. Strakhov, “Durnye priznaki,” Vremia, 1862, 11: 158-72. All subsequent quotations are from this (...)

72Royer’s interpretation of Darwin’s ideas as the “scientific” foundation and justification for such scorn caught the attention of Russian commentators almost immediately. The French translation of Origin came out in summer 1862 and, just a few months later, in November, Dostoevsky’s Time published a scathing critique of Royer’s views by the well-known journalist Nikolai Strakhov (1828-1896).144 Ostentatiously titled “Bad Signs” and ostensibly written as a review of Darwin’s original publication, as well as its German and French translations, the article paid much more attention to Royer’s “Preface” than to Darwin’s book (the German translation was mentioned only once in the entire article). Indeed, it seems that the review had been inspired not so much by Darwin’s concept as by Royer’s interpretations of its “social implications.”

  • 145 Here I use Darwin’s own language to convey the meaning of Strakhov’s praise. Strakhov himself actu (...)

73Strakhov praised Darwin’s book as “a great revolution” (perevorot) in the “understanding of organisms, i. e. plants and animals” that has profoundly changed “the most fundamental, most essential notions, which till this time had been prevalent regarding living organisms.” Pointing as a proof to several successive English editions and the speedy appearance of the German and French translations, he greeted it as “great progress, a huge step forward in the development of the natural sciences.” Its significance, according to Strakhov, stemmed from Darwin’s discovery of “one of those laws that govern the origin of species” — the “law of natural selection and struggle for existence.”145 The reviewer also noted that, “expectedly,” the book generated strong opposition, especially from the British clergy. But he devoted most of his review to Royer’s “strange,” “monstrous,” “improbable” opinions, providing lengthy excerpts from her “Preface.”

74Strakhov’s critique aimed first and foremost at the very idea of using the natural sciences to address social issues. He found the claim of the natural sciences to “domination, to directive importance” in the understanding of human life highly objectionable:

At the present time the study of nature is draped in a bright halo of hopes and beliefs. Many [people] expect much of it and believe in it as a means to solve all problems, as the spring of wisdom. There are constant references to the natural sciences as the ultimate authority; their method, their techniques are transferred to other sciences, [and] become rules for those areas of knowledge, which obviously are distanced the farthest from them in their subject, for example, for history, for philosophy.

75The main deficiency of Royer’s views, according to Strakhov, was that “she has hastened to draw the most far-flung and most general consequences from the great revolution in the natural sciences,” and “has assigned to Darwin’s theory much more significance and knowledge than it actually possesses.” “The main center of gravity in the historical development [of humanity] does not coincide with the field of the natural sciences,” he insisted, for “human life is governed and directed by other, deeper fundamentals.” Humanity, he continued, “has established for itself a different law, a different norm, a different ideal than those laws and ideals which nature is following.” One thing Strakhov saw as absolutely self-evident: “The study of nature is not everything we need [to understand humans].” “As soon as we do not separate human beings from nature,” he maintained, “put them on the same level with nature’s other creatures, and begin to consider them from the same viewpoint as animals and plants, we cease to understand human life, we lose its meaning.”

76Strakhov passionately objected to Royer’s conclusions regarding the inequality of human races. He contended that if we look at humans as animals, we could easily see that they do differ among themselves in numerous characteristics (in height, weight, color of skin, level of intelligence, sharpness of senses, and so on). Yet these variations do not negate the idea of “equality among humans as humans, not animals.” “Human dignity,” something clearly “imperceptible, unmeasurable, and undefinable by any distinct trait,” he stated forcefully, “overshadows all those obvious differences which separate the most illiterate of Negroes from the most enlightened of Europeans.”

  • 146 G. E. Blagosvetlov, “Politika,” RS, 1861, 2 (III): 15.
  • 147 E. Rekliu [E. Reclus], “Politika,” RS, 1863, 11-12(III): 42.

77Strakhov’s sentiment resonated strongly with the attitude of many educated Russians towards slavery and abolitionism. On the eve of the emancipation of the serfs, in February 1861, commenting on the reported failure of the “Liberia Colony” despite its inhabitants being freed from slavery, Blagosvetlov asked rhetorically: “What rational basis could there be for thinking that a man with black skin and stiff hair is less capable to govern himself than some fair-haired Anglo-Saxon?”146 In his account of the Caribbean and Central American “future republic” inhabited by the descendants of numerous indigenous tribes, Spanish conquistadors, English and French colonists, and African slaves, Élie Reclus, Russian Word’s political observer, pointed out: “The question about the origin of [human] tribes (plemen) has long been and for a long time yet will be debatable; but an answer provided [to this question] by science could neither strengthen, nor weaken the ties that unite us with our brothers of all colors and all climates.” “Whether humans had originated from one family or sprung from many different roots,” he concluded, “they are nevertheless all connected to one another, and their common unity lays in one shared understanding of justice and freedom! Even though their past were full of hatred, it would not matter if eventually they would join together and form one happy and free humanity!”147

  • 148 V. Z [aitsev], “Bibliografichekii listok: Edinstvo roda chelovecheskogo. Kartfazha. Perevod A. D. (...)

78Neither Strakhov’s sharp critique of Royer’s assertions, nor humanitarian sentiments of many Russian supporters of abolitionism did much to cool the enthusiasm of some Russian Word authors regarding the utility of the natural sciences, and of Darwin’s theory in particular, for the “scientific” understanding of human societies. In August 1864, Zaitsev picked up the glove thrown into the ring of Russian polemics by Strakhov’s article. Following his principle of “only tangentially touching upon the reviewed publication,” Zaitsev used as a pretext the Russian translation of Quatrefages’s Unité de l’espèce humaine, even though just a few months earlier, in April, Blagosvetlov had already dismissed this book as “completely superfluous.”148 In the eight-page “review” Zaitsev presented his own opinion about such “immense phenomena as slavery and colonization,” ostensibly in light of Quatrefages’s and Darwin’s ideas as he had understood them.

79In applying Darwin’s “laws” to humanity Zaitsev went even further than had Royer, asserting categorically: “it is impossible to deny that at the present time human races represent species as distinct as, for instance, horse and donkey.” “By acting upon human beings over the course of many millennia, heredity, natural selection (podbor), and environment had erected between the races a boundary so complete,” he alleged, “that, at the present, it is impossible even to show intermediary types, and the crosses between the races are infertile” [97]. He claimed emphatically that “there is not a single European scientist who does not consider the colored tribes to be lower than the white one in the very structure of their organisms” [94]. According to Zaitsev,

anatomy and the observations of the psychological abilities of aboriginal races in Africa and America demonstrate such a great, fundamental difference between the red-skinned, the Eskimos, the Polynesians, the Negros, the Caffres, the Hottentots, on the one hand, and the white man, on the other, that only sentimental ladies like Ms. Beecher Stowe could insist on the fraternity of all these races [95].

80He elaborated this point: “The difference existing between the white race, on the one hand, and the Negros, the [native] Americans, and the Polynesians, on the other, is far too evident to talk seriously about a possibility of existing between them relations even remotely similar to those existing among people of the same race” [98]. Following this argument to its logical end, he proclaimed: “Undoubtedly, and this is recognized by everyone, slavery is the best outcome that colored men could wish for when encountering the white race… for the majority of them could not exist alongside the Caucasian tribe at all and soon go completely extinct” [94].

81Zaitsev delivered a long diatribe against “those people, who, like a philanthropic lady in one of [Charles] Dickens’s novels, are preoccupied with the enlightenment and liberation of their black brothers, while their own children are falling from staircases and burn themselves with boiling water” [96]. Citing Quarterfages’s claim that centuries of oppression by their English masters had reduced the Irish poor in their physical and moral features to looking like “the most degraded Australian tribes,” Zaitsev stated vehemently:

Instead of championing the equality of the black tribe with the white [one], where millennia, and perhaps the very origins, had carved an ineradicable, organic boundary in both physical and moral characteristics, it would be better to turn philanthropic attention onto those who are in fact our brothers, but whom our political and social conditions degrade to the point that they lose the features and qualities of their [own] tribe and approach the lower races [96].

82“A few more centuries of existence in such conditions,” he continued, “and Europe will have a new race that would have forever lost those higher abilities that distinguish the Caucasian [race]. But the philanthropists find it more suitable to advance the emancipation of the Hottentots and the Bechuans and the protection of animals than to take care of their real brothers” [96-97].

83Zaitsev certainly was not trying to entice the journal’s readers to buy and read Quaterfages’s book “devoted to the question that since Darwin has lost any significance,” as he stated bluntly in the last paragraph of his “review.” He noted that, although the book “is not without interest and presents many remarkable facts,” it was priced “too high,” especially since “the translation is astonishingly bad” [100]. It seems that Zaitsev’s real goal was to redirect the attention of his readers from abolitionism to the miserable conditions of “their real brothers,” Russia’s newly “emancipated” serfs. If that was what he had set to accomplish, he failed miserably.

  • 149 M. A. Antonovich, “Russkomu Slovu,” Sovremennik, 1864, 105(11-12): 164.

84Zaitsev’s attempt to use Darwin’s name and ideas to substantiate his rampant anti-abolitionism did not sit well with the Russian educated public: he received several letters from perplexed or outraged readers regarding his review. The Contemporary’s leading critic Maksim Antonovich did not miss the opportunity to pick at his constant opponent: “Russian Word, which considers itself progressive and humane, defends the slavery and discrimination of Negroes.” “Truly humane people,” he continued sarcastically, “especially, the realists, as Russian Word calls itself, must be concerned with reducing even the slavery of animals [and must] defend even animal rights, to say nothing of Negroes, who are after all humans.”149 Other observers pointed out an obvious contradiction between Zaitsev’s statements and the abolitionist pronouncements of other contributors to the journal, such as the unyielding support for the equality of all human races by Reclus cited above. Spark, a popular satirical magazine, even published a mocking cartoon on the subject (see fig. 2-4).

  • 150 V. Zaitsev, “Bibliograficheskii listok. Otvet moim obviniteliam po povodu moego mneniia o tsvetnyk (...)

85Yet Zaitsev remained unrepentant. In the December 1864 “Bibliographical Leaf” he answered his critics, stating defiantly that there was no contradiction between his views and those of his fellow contributors to Russian Word: “One could be an anti-abolitionist without being an obscurantist.”150 He claimed that in his review he “had discussed not the political question about [the emancipation of the] Negroes, … but had pointed out a conclusion reached by the natural sciences regarding slavery.” “Since there is a huge difference between a scientific conclusion and its application to the political life of various people,” he continued, “it would be fairly strange to mix one with the other.” Scientific facts are not the same as political aspirations, Zaitsev asserted, repeating that “the slavery of the black race represents an absolutely natural and normal phenomenon, because it is defined not by some accidental, but by natural-historical causes.”

Fig. 2-4. A cartoon published in Spark on 23 December 1864 (p. 640) under the title: “A good-natured editor whose left hand does not know what the right hand does.” It depicts a two-faced man of Blagosvetlov’s considerable likeness patting a black man on the head with his left hand, while pulling the hair of another black man with his right hand. The left sleeve of the man’s jacket is labeled “Politics” and the right “Bibliography.” A caption underneath the cartoon reads: “All these sections are united into a cohesive whole, by the unity of thought represented by the journal, and by the convictions of its regular contributors ([from] Announcement. ‘Russian Word’).” Courtesy of RNB.

86“The point of the matter,” he continued, “is that scientists had debated endlessly whether human races are different species or different subspecies.” Darwin’s work should end this debate, for his concept had erased the strict distinction between species and subspecies. “The dissimilarities between human races are quite substantial and constant,” Zaitsev explained, “they differ from the distinctions between the human and other animal species not in the quality of any discrete characteristics, but in their quantity, to be exact, in their degree.” According to Zaitsev, “all scientists, including those whom nobody could accuse of obscurantism, such as Huxley and Vogt, adhere to this view.” These scientists consider the black race to be “lower in its organization than the white man” and indeed “representing an intermediate stage between the latter and other mammals.” On every page, according to Zaitsev, “we encounter in the writings of these scientists the following progression: European, Negro, and so on.” But, he surmised, if we accept this view, we must accept the logical conclusions it leads to, namely, that “when two races, one of which is superior to another in its organization, coexist, [then] any equality between them is impossible — the inferior race will inevitably be a slave to the superior one.” It was this “logical conclusion” that laid the foundation for his statement: “undoubtedly, and this is recognized by everyone, slavery is the best outcome that colored men could wish for when encountering the white race,” Zaitsev insisted, emphasizing the last part of the sentence. Of course, he continued, some people could object to his expression “everyone,” for there are certainly many people “who sympathize more with Madame Beecher Stowe’s laments than with Vogt’s opinion.” But he dismissed such objections by saying that “there are still many people who believe that the Earth is sitting on the backs of three whales.” “Like E. Reclus, I wish the Negroes all the best and resent those awful happenings that accompany slavery in North America,” he reiterated, “but I also point to the opinions of respected progressive scientists and to the conclusions from these opinions regarding the issue of slavery.” “Is it necessary, in order not to be an obscurantist,” he asked rhetorically, “to shut your eyes and harp on something, while science says something different?”

  • 151 Anon., “Po povodu statei ‘Russkogo slova’ o nevol’nichestve,” Iskra, 1865, 8: 114-17. All the subs (...)
  • 152 On Nozhin, see A. E. Gaisinovich, “Biolog-shestidesiatnik N. D. Nozhin i ego rol’v razvitii embrio (...)
  • 153 According to Gaisinovich, Elie Metchnikoffrefers to such a translation in his memoirs, but I was u (...)

87Zaitsev’s insolence did not remain unnoticed. A month later, in February 1865, Spark published a scathing anonymous “review” of Zaitsev’s articles.151 The review was actually written by Nikolai Nozhin (1841-1866), a talented young biologist, who had just returned to Russia from a long sojourn in western Europe, where he had studied zoology at the University of Heidelberg and conducted research on the embryology of the invertebrates in the Mediterranean Sea.152 Nozhin was well acquainted with Darwin’s works. Reportedly, he even had translated German-Brazilian biologist Fritz Müller’s book Für Darwin (1864), which provided numerous new facts in support of Darwin’s evolutionary concept.153 He also knew quite well the writings of Vogt, the main source of Zaitsev’s claims and assertions. Nozhin’s review mercilessly mocked Zaitsev’s style of argumentation, his “scientific conclusions,” and his (mis) use of the authority of “great scientists.”

88Nozhin derided the propensity of Russian journalists for “cultivating the flowers of oratory,” “burning with the flames of noble indignation,” and invoking the names of eminent scientists to support “their poetic thoughts,” while discussing subjects about which they knew very little, if anything at all. By taking apart several statements Zaitsev had made regarding slavery, he demonstrated that much of Zaitsev’s text was little more than “phrase-mongering.” “A phrase,” he explained, “is an innocent combination of words, mostly very good ones, that has the external appearance of a thought and delights the ears of its writer and readers with its sound play,” but is utterly devoid of any real meaning [115]. Nozhin picked as an example Zaitsev’s assertion that the enslavement of the black race by the white one “is defined not by some accidental, but by natural-historical causes.” He pointed out that this assertion makes no sense whatsoever, since “there are no accidental causes,” all causes could be interpreted as “natural-historical.”

89In a similar fashion, he ridiculed Zaitsev’s “scientific conclusions.” After stating a certain “fact,” such as, for instance, the existence of differences between the white and black races, Nozhin posited, “Mr. Zaitsev thinks he has the right to attach to this fact the most improbable therefore, a therefore that unconditionally justifies slavery.” But, he continued, Zaitsev had misunderstood the essence of Darwin’s concept, “which denies the constancy of species and subspecies, and hence [the constancy] of human races, and, to the contrary, accepts the possibility of their development into a higher type.” “It directly follows from Darwin’s theory,” he asserted, that “one should not consider the marked distinctions between the races as something constant.”

  • 154 A few months after the review was published, the book came out in two different Russian translatio (...)
  • 155 Nozhin gives the full translation of the title, indicating that he had used the 1864 London editio (...)

90Nozhin saved his most venomous comments for Zaitsev’s attempts to support anti-abolitionism by references to Vogt and Darwin. “Our thinkers,” he quipped, “use an authority to substantiate exactly those opinions which correspond the least to the actual views of the authority.” He provided an excerpt from Vogt’s book “on harmful and useful animals”154 to demonstrate that, contrary to Zaitsev’s assertions, the scientist himself had vehemently objected to both slavery as a social institution and the use of “zoological facts” for its justification. Nozhin also supplied two very long passages from Darwin’s Journal of Researches into the Natural History and Geology of the Countries Visited During the Voyage of H. M. S. Beagle Round the World, which showed, in Darwin’s own words, the scientist’s indignation at and highly negative attitude towards slavery.155 Nozhin concluded his review on a high note:

… [T]he source of inhumane articles and appalling actions against people and even animals (no matter how much Mr. Zaitsev laughs at humane attitudes towards the latter), always and everywhere, is one and the same: the insensitivity to the suffering of others that reaches its uppermost ugliness under the cover of meaningless phrases and [that] has nothing in common, either with the authorities of thought, or with any, let alone the latest, conclusions of science [117].

  • 156 See V. A. Zaitsev, “Bibliograficheskii listok: Charl’z Darvin, Puteshestvie vokrug sveta na korabl (...)

91Nozhin’s article delivered a heavy blow not only to Zaitsev’s pride, but also to Russian Word’s crusade to promote the utility of the natural sciences for scientific understanding of social issues. Zaitsev had apparently swallowed his pride, for he did not respond to Nozhin’s review, as he had to Antonovich’s remarks a few months prior, even though he had ample opportunity to do so. For instance, in the May 1865 “Bibliographical Leaf,” he reviewed the just published Russian translation of the first volume of Darwin’s Journal, from which Nozhin had extracted Darwin’s views on slavery. But Zaitsev ignored this fact, noting that “it is difficult to find another book that contains such a wonderful wealth of interesting facts in all fields of the natural sciences.” This time, he abstained from commenting on the “social implications” that could have been drawn from those facts.156

92Blagosvetlov, however, would not, and could ill afford to, let the subject that constituted one of his journal’s signature themes drop. Although nearly all of Russian Word’s “staff” authors, in one way or another, addressed this theme, none of them had adequate training in the natural sciences, let alone the necessary expertise in such areas as anthropology, physiology, or evolutionary biology. Thanks to his previous medical studies, Zaitsev was Blagosvetlov’s most qualified author to confront the issues raised by Darwin’s “revolution.” But Nozhin’s review had undermined Zaitsev’s reputation in this respect. Blagosvetlov desperately needed someone else capable of demonstrating that Darwin’s theory, and the natural sciences more generally, did have a role to play in not only understanding, but also curing the “social ills” that plagued the Russian Empire. Vasilii Florinskii and his “Human Perfection and Degeneration” certainly fit the bill.

Blagosvetlov and Florinskii

93Florinskii’s extensive treatise appeared in four installments in the August, October, November, and December 1865 issues of Russian Word. It actually opened the first three issues, and was the second (immediately following Shchapov’s article on “Natural Sciences and the People’s Economy”) in the December one, clearly attesting to the particular importance assigned to it by the journal’s editor. But how did it get there? Had Florinskii brought a manuscript of his treatise to Blagosvetlov requesting him to consider it for publication? Had Blagosvetlov commissioned Florinskii to write it? Why would the busy professor take up the burden of writing an extensive text on something that dealt with a subject quite remote from his immediate interests and required much of his time and effort?

  • 157 See N. V. Shelgunov, L. P. Shelgunova, M. L. Mikhailov, Vospominaniia v 2-kh tomakh (M.: Khudozhes (...)

94Available materials are completely silent on the circumstances of Florinskii’s contacts with Russian Word and its editor. I was unable to find any information on exactly when, where, how, and on whose initiative the two men had met, and who and how, individually or collectively, had come up with the idea of “Human Perfection and Degeneration.” In the entire collection of Florinskii’s personal documents there is not a single sheet of paper with Blagosvetlov’s name on it. Florinskii never mentioned Blagosvetlov, Russian Word, or this treatise in any of his diaries and memoirs. Nor are there any plans, drafts, notes on sources and references, or indeed anything that could illuminate the process of writing and editing it. Similarly, Blagosvetlov’s surviving materials contain no trace of Florinskii or his book. Nor does Florinskii’s name appear in Blagosvetlov’s surviving correspondence and various reminiscences about Blagosvetlov and his journal, such as, for instance, Shelgunov’s lengthy memoirs.157 Nevertheless, what little materials exist allow us to make certain suppositions.

95It is possible that it was Zaitsev who made the initial introductions. Zaitsev had attended lectures at the Imperial Medical-Surgical Academy and had many friends among its students. He had moved to St. Petersburg in December 1862 and had transferred to the IMSA after several years of study at the medical school of Moscow University. He might have taken Florinskii’s lecture course on gynecology offered to fourth and fifth year students in the 1863-1864 academic year, or attended the professor’s clinical demonstrations, and thus might have known Florinskii personally. Or perhaps, one of Zaitsev’s friends among the IMSA students had mentioned the young professor’s reputation as someone with a definite talent for writing clearly and succinctly on a variety of complicated subjects.

  • 158 See V. N. Sazhin, “Aleksandr Nikiforovich Morigerovskii – obshchestvennyi deiatel’i izdatel’,” in (...)
  • 159 See, for instance, the memoirs of Russian Word’s author, D. I. Stakheev, “Gruppy i portrety. Listo (...)
  • 160 See I. E. Barenbaum, “Tipografiia zhurnalov ‘Russkoe slovo,’ ‘Delo’ (izdatel’skaia deiatel’nost’Bl (...)

96It is also possible that Florinskii’s former teacher Alexander Morigerovskii had a hand in the matter. While Florinskii had been making his way to becoming a professor, in 1858-59, in parallel with his civil service job at the Ministry of State Properties, Morigerovskii had begun teaching literature at several secondary schools.158 A year later, Morigerovskii decided to return to fulltime teaching. He quit his job at the ministry and took a position as lecturer on Russian literature at the Technological Institute. But, like Blagosvetlov, he was unable to keep his new job for long. In early 1862, he was fired for “inciting student unrest,” and the secret police placed him under surveillance for suspected “revolutionary activities.” He supported himself by teaching in a gymnasium and by taking on translating and proofreading jobs for various periodicals, including The Contemporary and Russian Word. He built an extensive network of contacts in St. Petersburg’s literary community, among publishers, writers, and editors. He was on good terms with Nikolai Nekrasov and developed a close friendship with Nikolai Chernyshevskii: it was Morigerovskii who accompanied Chernyshevskii’s wife to the civic execution ceremony that preceded the writer’s exile in May 1864. Morigerovskii also knew Blagosvetlov quite well.159 Indeed, he became something of a confidant and even served as one of the editor’s proxies in running the Russian Word printing shop.160 Over the years, Florinskii apparently kept in touch with his former favorite teacher, who had so profoundly influenced him at the seminary and had done so much to bring him to St. Petersburg. It seems quite likely that it was Morigerovskii who introduced his former star student to Blagosvetlov.

97Whoever introduced the two men to each other, Blagosvetlov and Florinskii must have met (probably more than once) sometime in the late spring or the early summer of 1865. Given the similarity of their backgrounds, they must have hit it off pretty well. Perhaps Blagosvetlov had read a few of Florinskii’s critical articles in Medical Herald and liked his writing style. It seems certain that the editor would have explained his predicament to the prospective author in some detail. He probably suggested that Florinskii use his personal expertise in writing a series of essays that in some way would address the role of the natural sciences in the understanding of social life and would discuss possible “social implications” of Darwin’s theory and its “laws.”

98Judging by his previous publications, at that time, Florinskii had no particular interest in (and perhaps not even much acquaintance with) Darwin’s evolutionary concept or its “social implications.” The topic was far removed from his immediate duties, interests, and preoccupations. But he agreed to take on the task, perhaps because, like Blagosvetlov, he certainly believed in the power of knowledge as a tool in improving the life of his country and his compatriots. After all, did he not use that power on a daily basis in his own work at the IMSA clinics to improve the health of his patients? Indeed, he would pointedly end his first essay written for Blagosvetlov with a paraphrase of Francis Bacon’s famous statement: “correctly organized knowledge becomes power!”

  • 161 [Florinskii], “Doktorskii ekzamen,” p. 201.

99Florinskii’s was likely flattered by the invitation to write for the most influential journal of his time. Blagosvetlov offered him a chance to contribute to the current heated debates on the future of his Fatherland and its people, to make his personal views on important social concerns known in the farthest corners of the country, and to reach a much broader audience than the one he had addressed in his previous writings (which was limited to his fellow physicians and medical students). It seems that the young physician accepted the invitation, at least partially, because he felt that he could do it. As he remarked in one of his articles, “anyone, who feels his inner strengths, who recognizes his literary abilities, cannot remain silent. The need to write, as the need to speak up, is irresistible.”161

  • 162 For the English-language history of the publication and censorship troubles, see Daniel P. Todes, (...)
  • 163 I. Sechenov, “Refleksy golovnogo mozga,” MV, 1863, 47: 461-84; 48: 493-512. For historical assessm (...)

100Florinskii was undoubtedly aware of the considerable public resonance that the essay on “Reflexes of the Brain” written by his fellow IMSA professor Ivan Sechenov had generated less than two years earlier in 1863. In this essay, initially slated to appear in The Contemporary, Sechenov used his expertise in physiology to discuss much broader issues of the human psyche, such as free will, desires, and consciousness.162 Even though the censorship had prohibited its publication in The Contemporary, the essay did appear on the pages of Chistovich’s Medical Herald.163 Sechenov suggested that all of the phenomena of “psychic” life could be explained by the simple reflexes he had observed in his experiments on the inhibition of nervous impulses in a frog’s brain, which provoked a prolonged debate among the Russian educated public. Perhaps, Florinskii hoped that he too could stir the public opinion by using his professional expertise to illuminate another vitally important biological aspect of human life — reproduction, and its social embodiment in the institution of marriage.

101Florinskii’s intellectual style well prepared him to take on the new task. Even though his main scientific interests focused on the seemingly narrow medical specializations — gynecology, obstetrics, and pediatrics — he was far from a narrow specialist. He read widely. He researched and published on a variety of very diverse subjects, from physiology to therapy and clinical diagnostics, from histology to the ethics of medical practice, and from the principles of medical education to surgery. Most important, unlike Blagosvetlov’s “staff” writers, Florinskii was well aware that one particular branch of his own profession, named variously “public hygiene,” “social medicine,” or “social hygiene,” had already begun to address the health issues of, in Shelgunov’s terminology, not only “separate physiological human beings,” but also such “social organisms” as families, professions, occupations, classes, and nations. In contrast to the focus of clinical medicine on health and disease treatments of an individual, the nascent field of social hygiene focused on the issues of health and disease prevention in particular groups of people through various legislative measures. Florinskii was also well aware that Virchow, his idol whom he had admired since attending the German professor’s lectures in Berlin in 1861, had already identified “social conditions” as one of the most important determinants of health and disease.

102From this awareness it was but a short step to connecting Darwin’s “laws of selection” with social issues through the discussion of “human perfection and degeneration” and “marriage hygiene,” as the subjects of Florinskii’s essays would be defined in their title and introduction. And it was perhaps an even shorter step to connect the contemporary legislative initiatives to prevent the spread of communicable disease and to promote the health of a nation to the proposal of legislative interventions in marriage aimed at preventing degeneration and promoting the perfection of humankind.

  • 164 Their daughter Olga would be born on 23 January 1866.

103Moreover, Florinskii definitely had a personal interest in examining these subjects in some depth. As we saw in the previous chapter, just a few months prior to his meeting(s) with Blagosvetlov, in early February, Florinskii got married. In late April or early May, his wife got pregnant, and, most certainly, Florinskii monitored her pregnancy very carefully.164 He must have thought about their future child and pondered his responsibilities as a husband, a father, and a physician. His specialization in gynecology, obstetrics, and pediatrics provided him with the necessary knowledge to see these subjects not merely as a personal matter but as an important social issue, which he, as a physician, could address in detail. And this is exactly what he set out to do in his essays.

104The author and the editor must have discussed Florinskii’s ideas and the possible ways of presenting them. Since no drafts or proofs of, nor any correspondence regarding “Human Perfection and Degeneration” have survived, all we have to go on in our analysis is the published text. We thus can only guess at just how much or how little Blagosvetlov influenced its author and the actual writing. Based on what we have learned about Blagosvetlov, the editor, on the preceding pages, it is safe to assume that he allowed his newest “find” of an author considerable freedom in choosing the specific topics and composition of the essays. But he must have approved the general shape and goal of the entire treatise as it was outlined on the opening pages of the first essay: to discuss the key components of Darwin’s evolutionary concept — variability, heredity, selection, extinction/ degeneration, and progress/perfection — and the ways that they could be applied to humans.

  • 165 For publications in verse, the basic unit for calculating the honorarium was one line.
  • 166 For details of financial arrangements in Russian Word, see Kuznetsov, Nigilisty, pp. 93-96.

105The writer and the editor must have also agreed on the total length and number of essays, for this would determine the journal’s size, contents, and composition for several months running, as well as the amount of Florinskii’s honorarium. At the time Russian publishers paid their writers per each “typographical” list, which, in the then most popular “octavo” format, meant sixteen printed pages.165 Since the total length of the published essays is 142 journal pages, which translates into almost exactly nine lists, it is quite likely that Blagosvetlov had asked Florinskii to write three, not four, essays, each about three lists in length. The first and the second essays are roughly three lists in length each. And it certainly looks like the third essay was split into two parts and published in the two consecutive (November and December) issues for some editorial reasons that had nothing to do with its contents. The two parts actually have continuing pagination, which indicates that they might have even been typeset as a single piece. Combined, they match exactly the length of the second essay. Blagosvetlov paid his lead authors, like Pisarev and Shelgunov, fifty to sixty rubles per list.166 To Florinskii, as a novice, he might have offered a bit less, but considering the total length of the published essays, this still amounted to a considerable sum (about a third of Florinskii’s annual salary), which must have been discussed and agreed upon.

106It is also quite likely that the editor and the author had agreed on the specific timing of publication and, hence, the delivery schedule. The contents of Florinskii’s work strongly suggest that he had written it piece by piece during the summer and early fall of 1865. Given the time necessary for typesetting, proofreading, and getting a censor’s permission, in order to appear in the August issue the first essay should have been delivered to the editor no later than mid-July. The next essay had perhaps been delivered at the end of the summer, before Florinskii had to resume his teaching at the academy, and the last — sometime in October. It is likely that all these technical details had been discussed and settled in May or early June.

  • 167 On the censorship of medical publications, see Anon., “Zakon 8 marta 1862 goda,” MV, 1862 (21 Apri (...)

107But there was one more issue that Blagosvetlov and Florinskii must have discussed — censorship. Since all of his previous publications had appeared in professional journals or as academic monographs and textbooks, which had summarily been exempted from the general censorship, Florinskii had had no experience in dealing with censors.167 Blagosvetlov, on the other hand, dealt with them on an almost daily basis. For the editor, avoiding the censor’s merciless pen — that could not merely cripple a piece of writing but actually forbid its publication altogether — was a matter of utmost importance. At the time of his discussion(s) with Florinskii, Blagosvetlov definitely knew that new censorship rules would come into effect on 1 September 1865, which might have influenced his choice of the exact timing of publication for each essay.

  • 168 See Lemke, Ocherki; idem, Epokha; and Ruud, Fighting Words, especially, Chapter 9, “The Reform of (...)

108The new laws promulgated in early April changed the Russian censorship system profoundly.168 The old rules of “preventive” censorship had required that every piece of writing be screened before publication and had placed responsibility for permitting something “unallowable” to appear in print on the shoulders of the censor first, and the publisher second. Indeed in 1862, one of the censors responsible for monitoring Russian Word had actually been fired for permitting the publication of several articles that his superiors found totally unacceptable and which led to the journal’s eight-month suspension. The new laws instituted a system of “punitive” censorship, whereby a publisher could print virtually anything, but, if the censor found a certain published piece “objectionable,” the publication would be arrested and destroyed, while its publisher — in addition to losing initial investment — along with its author, would incur stiff penalties imposed by the court, ranging from large fines to imprisonment. In the case of a periodical, the situation could also result in an official “warning,” and, after the periodical received three such “warnings,” it could be suspended or even shut down completely. Blagosvetlov certainly wanted to avoid such an eventuality, and most likely advised the novice author regarding various ways to evade the censorship’s clutches.

  • 169 See Todes, “Biological Psychology and the Tsarist Censor.”

109The first essay appeared in the August issue, and thus Blagosvetlov had to abide by the old rules and to get the censorship approval prior to its publication. Perhaps this is why it contained only a synopsis of the latest scientific views on “the variability and heredity of the human type.” Based on his previous experience in publishing “scientific-popular” texts, Blagosvetlov might have hoped that in this form the first essay would unlikely attract much attention from any censor. As far as we know, it did not. But the subsequent essays came out after the new rules had come into effect, and their contents put the editor on much shakier ground. The second and third essays discussed various factors, from “material well-being” to “rational marriage,” which, according to Florinskii, could produce the perfection or the degeneration of the human kind, but which, from the viewpoint of the authorities, also presented certain potentially subversive issues. To begin with, the whole matter of marriage in Russia was the exclusive domain of the church, and thus constituted a particularly sensitive subject, especially considering Florinskii’s advocacy of inter-confessional marriages, which were explicitly forbidden by Orthodox rules. Moreover, “materialism,” “rationalism,” “realism,” and other similar “isms” had long been telltale watchwords that the censors saw as undermining the authority of the church and its doctrine.169 The contents of the second and third essays were bound to invite the censorship attention and, perhaps, intervention.

  • 170 I will discuss these steps in the next chapter.
  • 171 For details on how the three “warnings” were issued and the journal’s suspension, see S. S. Konkin (...)
  • 172 See RGIA, f. 776, op. 3, d. 161, ll. 22-25.

110Florinskii and/or Blagosvetlov took certain steps to deflect the unwanted attention, which proved quite effective.170 Although it was the October, November, and December 1865 issues that elicited the three “warnings” to the journal under the new censorship laws and resulted in its suspension for five months in February 1866, Florinskii’s essays published in these issues were not to blame. Pisarev’s and Zaitsev’s articles printed in the October issue provided the foundation for the censor’s wrath that led to the first “warning.” Similarly, the main reasons for the second “warning” issued after the appearance of the November issue were Pisarev’s and Shelgunov’s articles. The third “warning” announced after the publication of the December issue was, in turn, provoked by Shelgunov’s and Tkachev’s essays.171 In the censorship reports that justified these warnings and the ensuing suspension of Russian Word, Florinskii’s treatise was not even mentioned.172

111In the end, however, no matter how much input Blagosvetlov had in defining the overall theme of “Human Perfection and Degeneration,” or how much guidance he gave to its author on its particular parts and issues, the treatise was the result of the extensive effort and careful thought of Vasilii Florinskii.

Notes

1 Charles Darwin, On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, Or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life (London: John Murray, 1859), p, 488. The complete text of this edition is available at https://www.biodiversitylibrary.org/item/135954. All subsequent references to this edition will be given as Darwin, Origin.

2 In comparison, only four new periodicals had appeared in the preceding five years. For detailed quantitative analyses of Russian periodicals during the imperial era, see N. M. Lisovskii, Bibliografiia russkoi periodicheskoi pechati, 1703-1900 gg., 2 vols. (M.: Literaturnoe obozrenie, [1915] 1995); and A. G. Dement’ev et. al., Russkaia periodicheskaia pechat’(1702-1894). Spravochnik (M.: Gospolitizdat, 1959).

3 N. V. Shelgunov, “Vospominaniia,” in N. V. Shelgunov, L. P. Shelgunova, M. L. Mikhailov, Vospominaniia v 2-kh tomakh (M.: Khudozhestvennaia literatura, 1967), vol. 1, pp. 93-94.

4 See W. Bruce Lincoln, In the Vanguard of Reform: Russia’s Enlightened Bureaucrats, 1825-1861 (DeKalb, IL: Northern Illinois University Press, 1982).

5 See Esin, Istoriia russkoi zhurnalistiki. For an English language account that focuses exclusively on “literary journals,” see Deborah A. Martinsen, ed., Literary Journals in Imperial Russia (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1997), especially the chapter by Robert L. Belknap, “Survey of Russian Journals, 1840-1880,” pp. 91-116, which unfortunately contains a number of factual mistakes. For a more general analysis of the role of “thick” journals in the second half of the nineteenth century, see Anton Fedyashin, Liberals under Autocracy: Modernization and Civil Society in Russia, 1866-1904 (Madison, WI: University of Wisconsin Press, 2012).

6 For detailed histories of the journal, see L. E. Varustin, Zhurnal “Russkoe slovo.” 1859-1866 (L.: Izd. Leningradskogo universiteta, 1966), and F. Kuznetsov, Nigilisty? D. I. Pisarev i zhurnal “Russkoe slovo” (M.: Khudozhestvennaia literatura, 1983). Although the analytical framework of these books bears the unmistakable stamp of Soviet “Marxist” historiography, both contain a wealth of factual information about the journal and its contributors.

7 Although the count left his footprints in almost every area of Russian literature, arts, philanthropy, education, and even chess, surprisingly, there is no fully-fledged biography of this remarkable man in any language, only brief notices in various encyclopedias and biographical lexicons. See, for instance, “Kushelev-Bezborodko, Grigorii Aleksandrovich,” in А. А. Polovtsov, Russkii biograficheskii slovar’(SPb.: Russkoe istoricheskoe obshchestvo, 1903), vol. 9, p. 703.

8 G. A. Kushelev to F. M. Dostoevskii, 5 July 1858. Cited in Varustin, Zhurnal, p. 13.

9 See Sankt-Peterburgskie vedomosti, 25 October 1858, p. 1365.

10 This is how Apollon Grigor’ev, the journal’s leading critic during its first year of publication, characterized it in his autobiography, cited in Kuznetsov, Nigilisty, p. 23.

11 See, for instance, V. P. “Literaturnaia zametka,” Russkii invalid, 5 September 1859, p. 1.

12 For biographical details, see P. S. Shelgunov, “G. Blagosvetlov,” in G. E. Blagosvetlov, Sochineniia (SPb.: E. A. Blagosvetlova, 1882), iii-xxviii; and S. A. Vengerov, “Blagosvetlov, G. E.,” in idem, Kritiko-biograficheskii slovar’russkikh pisatelei i uchenykh (SPb.: I. A. Efron, 1892), vol. 3, pp. 345-62.

13 The early years of Blagosvetlov’s life are described in detail in A. Lebedev, “K biograficheskomu ocherku G. E. Blagosvetlova,” Russkaia starina, 1913, 153(1): 166-82; (2): 359-66; (3): 629-43.

14 The Russian State Archive for Literature and Arts (hereafter RGALI), f. 1027, op. 1, d. 3, cited in Kuznetsov, Nigilisty, p. 43.

15 See the Russian State Historical Archive (hereafter RGIA), f. 1268, op. 8 (1855), d. 155, ll. 1-10; and f. 733, op. 88, d. 123, ll. 1-3.

16 See G. R. Prokhorov, “G. E. Blagosvetlov, Ia. P. Polonskii, G. A. Kushelev-Bezborodko. Pis’ma i dokumenty,” Zven’ia, 1932, 1: 293-344.

17 On Herzen, see Martin Malia, Alexander Herzen and the Birth of Russian Socialism, 1812-1855 (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1961); and Edward Acton, Alexander Herzen and the Role of the Intellectual Revolutionary (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1979).

18 For a detailed description of Blagosvetlov’s involvement with “revolutionary circles,” see T. I. Grazhdanova, “G. E. Blagosvetlov v russkom osvoboditel’nom dvizhenii 40-60-kh gg. XIX veka,” doctoral dissertation, Leningrad, 1985.

19 Blagosvetlov described the details of his meeting with the count and its results in a nine-page article that opened the September 1865 issue of the journal. It was clearly added to the issue at the last minute and had no pagination. See G. Blagosvetlov, “Otvet g. Podpischiku ‘Russkogo slova’ na ego neobkhodimye voprosy,” RS, 1865, 9: [iii-xii].

20 For an analysis of Blagosvetlov’s work as a writer and a critic, see E. K. Murenina, “Literaturno-kriticheskaia deiatel’nost’ G. E. Blagosvetlova,” doctoral dissertation, Sverdlovsk, 1989.

21 Blagosvetlov, “Otvet g. Podpischiku,” RS, 1865, 9: [iii-xii].

22 At the peak of its popularity in 1865, the number exceeded 4,000. See Kuznetsov, Nigilisty; and Varustin, Zhurnal.

23 On the history of The Contemporary, see V. Evgenʹev-Maksimov, “Sovremennik” v 40-50 gg.: ot Belinskogo do Chernyshevskogo (L.: Izd-vo pisatelei, 1934); idem, “Sovremennik” pri Chernyshevskom i Dobroliubove (L.: Khudozh. lit-ra, 1936); and V. E. Bograd, Zhurnal “Sovremennik”, 1847-1866 (M.: Khudozhestvennaia literatura, 1959). As is the case with the histories of Russian Word, these books contain a mass of useful factual information, but their analytical frameworks are shaped by the official Soviet ideology.

24 P. N. Tkachev, “Izdatel’skaia i literaturnaia deiatel’nost’ G. E. Blagosvetlova,” in idem, Kladezi mudrosti rossiiskikh filosofov (M.: Pravda, 1990), pp. 550-76 (p. 554). Written in response to the 1882 publication of Blagosvetlov’s biography and “selected works” and slated to appear in Blagosvetlov’s journal Delo (Deed), this article had been banned by the censorship and was first published only in 1940.

25 G. Blagosvetlov to Ia. Polonskii, Paris, [April] 1859, Zven’ia, 1932, 1: 328-29 (p. 329).

26 For details on certain members of this remarkable group, see F. Kuznetsov, Publitsisty 1860-kh godov. G. Blagosvetlov, V. Zaitsev, N. Sokolov (M.: Molodaia gvardiia, 1969); and idem, Krug D. I. Pisareva (M.: Khudozhestvennaia literatura, 1990).

27 There were very few women writers in 1860s Russia, and Blagosvetlov took special care to recruit several of them to his journal.

28 This admission appeared in a letter Pisarev’s mother published at her son’s direction in The Contemporary, see Varvara Pisareva, “Pis’mo v redaktsiiu ‘Sovremennika’,” Sovremennik, 1865, 3: 218-20.

29 D. I. Stakheev, “Gruppy i portrety. Listochki vospominanii,” Istoricheskii vestnik, 1907, 109(7-9): 424-37 (pp. 424-25).

30 G. N. Potanin, “Vospominaniia o N. A. Nekrasove,” Istoricheskii vestnik, 1905, 99(2): 458-89 (p. 477).

31 See Blagosvetlov’s complaint that in several issues of Delo that came out while he had been abroad, the articles in the first section of the journal had been poorly connected to those in the second section, cited in Varustin, Zhurnal, p. 60.

32 The existing accounts often disagree on, and occasionally downplay, Blagosvetlov’s actual role in shaping the journal, see Varustin, Zhurnal; Kuznetsov, Publitsisty; and idem, Nigilisty.

33 RGIA, f. 772, op. 8, d. 374. Cited in Varustin, p. 103.

34 All the citations are from Blagosvetlov’s letters to D. L. Mordovtsev, which had been published in G. Prokhorov, “Shestidesiatye gody v pis’makh sovremennika,” in N. K. Piksanov and O. V. Tsekhnovitser, eds., Shestidesiatye gody (M.-L.: AN SSSR, 1940), pp. 432-36.

35 See, for instance, RGIA, f. 772, op. 8, d. 105.

36 The State Archive of the Russian Federation (hereafter GARF), f. 109, op. 1, d. 2044, l. 2.

37 For details on the Russian censorship during the period, see Mikhail Lemke, Ocherki po istorii russkoi tsenzury i zhurnalistiki XIX stoletiia (SPb.: Trud, 1904); and, particularly, idem, Epokha tsenzurnyh reform 1859-1865 godov (SPb.: Gerol’d, 1904); on the “temporary rules,” see the latter volume, pp. 166-78. In the last twenty years, the history of censorship in Russia has become a lively field of historical research, with hundreds of publications ranging from short notes to full monographs. See, for instance, the proceedings of several conferences held in St. Petersburg, M. B. Konashev, ed., Svoboda nauchnoi informatsii i okhrana gosudarstvennoi tainy (L.: BAN, 1991); idem, ed., Tsenzura v tsarskoi Rossii i Sovetskom Soiuze (M.: Rudomino, 1995); idem, ed., Tsenzura i dostup k informatsii: istoriia i sovremennost’(SPb.: Russion National Library, 2005), as well as seven volumes compiled by Mikhail Konashev and issued during the last ten years under the general title “Censorship in Russia: History and the Present,” see Tsenzura v Rossii: Istoriia i sovremennost’(SPb.: RNB, 2001-2015), vol. 1-7. For an English language analysis, see Charles A. Ruud, Fighting Words: Imperial Censorship and the Russian Press, 1804-1906 (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2009).

38 See RGIA, f. 777, op. 2, d. 1.

39 Another regular contributor, Afanasii Shchapov, was exiled to Siberia in the summer of 1864. For a voluminous biography of Shchapov, see A. S. Madzharov, Afanasii Prokop’evich Shchapov: Istoriia zhizni (1831-1876) i zhizn’“Istorii” (Irkutsk: Tipografiia No. 1, 2005); for an English language assessment of his works, see Andrew M. McGreevy, “A. P. Shchapov’s Scientific Analysis of the Nature of Russian Society,” doctoral dissertation, Ohio State University, 1973.

40 For details of this peculiar deal, see Kuznetsov, Nigilisty, pp. 198-204.

41 At first, this role was played by Alexander Afanas’ev-Chuzhbinskii, a wellknown litterateur, and later, by one of the journal’s regular contributors, novelist Nikolai Blagoveshchenskii.

42 See RGIA, f. 775, op. 1 (1863), d. 288. Emphasis added.

43 D. I. Pisarev, “Nasha universitetskaia nauka,” RS, 1863, 7 (I): 1-75; 8 (I): 1-54.

44 “Ob” iavlenie ob izdanii Russkogo slova v 1863 godu,” RS, 1863, 1: front matter.

45 A. N. Gertsen, “Byloe i dumy,” in idem, Sobranie sochinenii (M.: Izd-vo Akademii nauk SSSR, 1954-65), vol. 9, p. 168.

46 Piksanov and Tsekhnovitser, eds, Shestidesiatye gody, p. 225.

47 D. I. Pisarev, “Shkola i zhizn’,” RS, 1865, 7 (I): 132.

48 These various labels, which defined a particular journal’s “direction,” have been widely used in contemporary polemics. On polemics between, for instance, Russian Word and The Contemporary, see Pereira, “Challenging the Principle of Authority.”

49 D. I. Pisarev, “Razrushenie estetiki,” RS, 1865, 5 (II): 1-32 (p. 3). Emphasis in original.

50 D. Pisarev, “Pushkin i Belinskii (stat’ia vtoraia),” RS, 1865, 6 (II): 1-60 (p. 3). Emphasis in original.

51 Ibid., p. 19. Historians of the journal have spilled much ink on this aspect of Russian Word’s publications. See, for instance, Chapter 8, titled “The Destruction of Aesthetics?” in Kuznetsov, Nigilisty, pp. 467-502; and Varustin, Zhurnal. For English language analyses of the debate among Russian writers on utilitarianism in aesthetics, see Robert L. Jackson, “Dostoevsky’s Critique of the Aesthetics of Dobroliubov,” Slavic Review, 1964, 23(2): 258-74; and Charles A. Moser, Esthetics as Nightmare: Russian Literary Theory, 1855-1870 (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1989).

52 D. Pisarev, “Nereshennyi vopros (stat’ia tret’ia i posledniaia),” RS, 1864, 11(II): 1-64 (p. 34).

53 See, for instance, V. Samoilovich, “Bezvykhodnoe polozhenie,” RS, 1864, 2 (I): 119-58; 3 (I): 29-79; N. Kholodov [N. Bazhin], “Stepan Rulev,” RS, 1864, 11(I): 301-34; 12(I): 85-104; N. A. Blagoveshchenskii, “Pered rassvetom,” RS, 1865, 1 (I): 39-74; 2 (I): 244-92; 4 (I): 175-215; and many others.

54 Such as, for instance, Aleksei F. Pisemskii’s novel A Troubled Sea (Vzbalomuchennoe more) (1863) that was viciously criticized in Zaitsev’s review titled “A Troubled Novelist,” see V. Zaitsev, “Vzbalomuchennyi romanist,” RS, 1863, 10(II): 23-44; on the general issue of the “anti-nihilist trend” in the literature of the period, see Charles A. Moser, Antinihilism in the Russian Novel of the 1860s (The Hague: Mouton, 1964).

55 See “Zapiska A. V. Nikitenki o napravlenii zhurnala ‘Russkoe slovo’,” Russkii arkhiv, 1895, 2: 225-28 (p. 226).

56 Cited in Daniel P. Todes, Ivan Pavlov (New York: Oxford University Press, 2014), p. 30. The students to which Pavlov refers would have been only fourteen-eighteen years old.

57 GARF, f. 109, op. 1, d. 1632, l. 2, cited in Kuznetsov, Nigilisty, p. 491.

58 After the “Whistle” (Svistok) — a satirical appendix to The Contemporary established by Dobroliubov in 1858.

59 For a detailed analysis of this characterization and the very label “nihilist,” see Kuznetsov, Nigilisty, pp. 537-84; Richard Peace, “Nihilism,” in William Leatherbarrow and Derek Offord, eds., A History of Russian Thought (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010), pp. 116-40; and Olga Vishnyakova, “Russian Nihilism: The Cultural Legacy of the Conflict Between Fathers and Sons,” Comparative and Continental Philosophy, 2011, 3(1): 99-111.

60 Compare, for instance, D. Pisarev, “Realisty,” RS, 1864, 9-11; and M. Antonovich, “Lzhe-realisty,” Sovremennik, 1865, 7: 53-93.

61 D. I. Pisarev, “Progulka po sadam rossiiskoi slovesnosti,” RS, 1865, 3 (II): 1-68 (p. 35).

62 See a monumental, though dated, two-volume exploration of the place of science in Imperial Russia, Alexander Vucinich, Science in Russian Culture, a History to 1860 (Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 1963), and idem, Science in Russian Culture, 1861-1917 (Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 1970). For more recent accounts, though much narrower in their scope, see Michael D. Gordin, A Well-Ordered Thing: Dmitrii Mendeleev and the Shadow of the Periodic Table (New York: Basic, 2004); and Charles Eliss, “Natural Science,” in Leatherbarrow and Offord, eds., A History of Russian Thought, pp. 286-307.

63 Norov’s statement is cited in K. A. Timiriazev, “Probuzhdenie estestvoznaniia v tret’ei chetverti veka,” in Istoriia Rossii v XIX veke, v 9 tomakh (SPb.: Granat, 1909), vol. 7, pp. 1-30 (p. 2). Emphasis in original.

64 N. Shelgunov, “Vospitanie kharaktera,” RS, 1865, 12(II): 175-210 (p. 175).

65 For the attitude to science by “enlightened bureaucrats,” see Lincoln, In the Vanguard of Reform.

66 For a general analysis of the Enlightenment ideas and ideals in post-Crimean Russia, see R. G. Eimontova, Idei prosveshcheniia v obnovliaiushcheisia Rossii v 50-60-e gody XIX v. (M.: IRI RAN, 1998).

67 N. Serno-Solov’evich, “Ne trebuet li nyneshnee sostoianie znanii novoi nauki,” RS, 1865, 1 (I), p. 127.

68 See RGIA, f. 774, op. 1 (1864), d. 12, ll. 117-18.

69 For a general overview of the changes in the institutional structures and organizational principles of Russian science after the 1850s, see E. V. Soboleva, Organizatsiia nauki v poreformennoi Rossii (L.: Nauka. 1983); some useful information on the development of academia in the same period could be found in James C. McClelland, Autocrats and Academics: Education, Culture, and Society in Tsarist Russia (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 1979); and Vucinich, Science in Russian Culture, 1970.

70 For a general analysis of scientific societies in Imperial Russia, see Joseph Bradley, Voluntary Associations in Tsarist Russia: Science, Patriotism, and Civil Society (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2009). Russian physicians were particularly active in organizing various local societies. From 1858 to 1864, they established nearly thirty new societies. See M. M. Levit, Stanovlenie obshchestvennoi meditsiny v Rossii (M.: Meditsina, 1974), pp. 102-05.

71 Numerous memoirs record that movement; see, for instance, E. N. Vodovozova, Na zare zhizni. Vospominaniia (SPb.: 1-ia trudovaia artel’, 1911), especially Chapters 15 and 16: “Among the Petersburg Youth of the ‘sixtieths,” pp. 442-502.

72 See, for instance, A. P. Katolinskii, Lektsii v Passazhe (SPb.: Imperatorskaia akademiia nauk, 1860); and [A. I. Il’inskii], Piat’ populiarno-gigienicheskikh lektsii doktora Il’inskogo, chitannykh v zale Entomologicheskogo obshchestva 26, 29 marta, 1,9, 12, aprelia 1864 goda (SPb.: A. Ia. Isakov, 1864).

73 On the 1864 educational reform see, for instance, a classic account by N. V. Chekhov, Narodnoe obrazovanie Rossii s 60-kh godov XIX veka (M.: Pol’za, 1912). For a recent re-examination of the topic, see A. N. Shevelev, Shkola. Gosudarstvo. Obshchestvo. Ocherki sotsial’no-politicheskoi istorii obshchego shkol’nogo obrazovaniia v Rossii vtoroi poloviny XIX veka (SPb.: SPbGUPM, 2001).

74 For examples of the use of this particular expression, see, for instance, M. Antonovich, “Piat’ populiarno-gigienicheskikh lektsii d-ra Il’inskogo,” Sovremennik, 1864, 8: 207-15 (p. 207).

75 For a general overview of the popularization of science in Russia, see E. A. Lazarevich, Populiarizatsiia nauki v Rossii (M.: MGU, 1981); and idem, S vekom naravne: populiarizatsiia nauki v Rossii (M.: Kniga, 1984). Overviews of “scientific popular” periodicals in Imperial Russia could be found in Jeffrey Brooks, When Russia Learned to Read: Literacy and Popular Culture, 1861-1917 (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1985); V. A. Parafonova, “Nauchno-populiarnye zhurnaly v dorevoliutsionnyi period,” Mediaskop, 2011, 3, http://www.mediascope.ru/node/897; idem, “Stanovlenie nauchno-populiarnykh zhurnalov v Rossii,” Vestnik MGU, Zhurnalistika, 2011, 6: 61-72; and A. G. Vaganov, “Rozhdenie termina ‘nauchno-populiarnaia literatura’ v Rossii poslednei treti XIX-pervoi cheverti XX v.,” VIET, 2014, 4: 75-89.

76 See Vokrug sveta: Zhurnal zemlevedeniia, estestvennykh nauk, noveishikh otkrytii, izobretenii i nabliudenii (SPb.: M. O. Vol’f, 1861-68) and Priroda i zemlevedenie: Zhurnal zemlevedeniia, estestvennykh nauk, noveishikh otkrytii, izobretenii i nabliudenii (SPb.: M. O. Vol’f, 1862-68). On M. Vol’f and his publishing empire, see S. F. Librovich, Na kniznom postu: vospominaniia, zapiski, dokumenty (M.: Gos. Istoricheskaia biblioteka, 2005).

77 Russian Word regularly carried this advertisement. See, for instance, the back matter of the October 1863 issue.

78 See RGIA, f. 774, op. 1 (1864), d. 12, l. 117.

79 D. Pisarev, “Nereshennyi vopros (stat’ia tret’ia i posledniaia),” RS, 1864, 11(II): 1-64 (p. 52).

80 In late 1865, when Zaitsev left the journal, Tkachev took over this task.

81 For details of Zaitsev’s biography, see Kuznetsov, Nigilisty.

82 [V. Zaitsev], “Bibliograficheskii listok,” RS, 1864, 10(II): 91.

83 See Varustin, Zhurnal, and Kuznetsov, Nigilisty.

84 N. Shelgunov, “Nachala obshchestvennogo byta,” RS, 1863, 11-12(III): 1-51 (p. 41).

85 For a rather superficial analysis of this view in Pisarev’s writings, see N. N. Zabelina, “Osmyslenie roli nauki kak faktora istoricheskogo progressa v vozreniiakh D. I. Pisareva,” Vestnik MGTU, 2007, 10(3): 382-87.

86 A useful introduction to the concept of “scientific revolution” could be found in Steven Shapin, The Scientific Revolution (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 1996), especially, in his 44-page “Bibliographic Essay.”

87 Blagosvetlov even invited Vogt to become a “staffscience writer” for Russian Word. See “Ob” iavlenie ob izdanii literaturno-politicheskogo zhurnala ‘Russkoe slovo’ v 1866 godu,” RS, 1865, 12: front matter.

88 Zaitsev’s statement is cited in the memoirs of Sergei Kravchinskii (1851-1895), an active participant of the revolutionary movement in the 1870s and 1880s, published under the telling title, “Underground Russia.” See S. Stepniak-Kravchinskii, “Podpol’naia Rossiia,” in idem, Sochineniia (M.: Khudozhestvennia literatura, 1958), p. 359.

89 [G. Z. Eliseev], “Vnutrennee obozrenie,” Sovremennik, 1864, 7 (II), p. 90.

90 For a dated, but still useful overview of the historical development of “social science” in Russia, see Alexander Vucinich, Social Thought in Tsarist Russia: The Quest for a General Science of Society, 1861-1917 (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 1976).

91 N. S. Kashkin, “Idealisticheskii i pozitivnyi metody v sotsiologii,” in P. E. Shchegolev, ed., Petrashevtsy v vospominaniiakh sovremennikov v 3-kh tomakh (M.-L.: GIZ, 1926-28), vol. 2, pp. 167-73 (p. 173).

92 For a history of the Petrashevskii circle and the trial in English, see J. H. Seddon, The Petrashevtsy: A Study of the Russian Revolutionaries of 1848 (London: Manchester University Press, 1985).

93 N. G. Chernyshevskii, “Antropologicheskii printsip v filosofii,” in idem, Sochineniia v 2-kh tomakh (M.: Mysl’, 1987), vol. 2, pp. 146-328 (p. 187).

94 N. Serno-Solov’evich, “Ne trebuet li nyneshnee sostoianie znanii novoi nauki,” RS, 1865, 1 (I): 125-37 (pp. 127, 131).

95 At the time, Pisarev was writing reviews and editing a bibliographic section in Sunrise (Rassvet), an obscure magazine “for young ladies.”

96 See G. Geine [H. Heine], “Atta Troll, perevod. D. I. Pisarev,” RS, 1860, 12(I): 1-62; and D. I. Pisarev, “Sbornik stikhotvorenii inostrannykh poetov,” ibid., 1860, 12(II): 32-42.

97 See D. I. Pisarev, “Ulichnye tipy. A. Golitsynskogo, s 20-iu risunkami Pikkolo. Izd. K. Rikhau. M. 1860,” RS, 1861, 2 (II): 58-70.

98 This long-winded essay was Pisarev’s “candidate” dissertation written in the early spring. See D. I. Pisarev, “Appolonii Tianskii ili agoniia rimskogo obshchestva,” RS, 1861, 6 (I): 1-51; 7 (I): 1-86.

99 D. I. Pisarev, “Fiziologicheskie eskizy Moleshota,” RS, 1861, 7 (II): 23-53. For the German original, see Jacob Moleschot, Physiologisches Skizzenbuch (Giesen: Emil Roth, 1860).

100 Apparently, Viktor L. Khankin, a practicing doctor and the journal’s “staff” reviewer of scientific and medical literature, quit at the beginning of 1861. His last review appeared in February, and from March until July Russian Word carried no reviews of this sort of publications. Perhaps, knowing Pisarev’s proficiency in German, Blagosvetlov offered him Khankin’s role reviewing the latest achievements of German physiology.

101 D. I. Pisarev, “Protsess zhizni (Physiologische Briefe, von Carl Vogt),” RS, 1861, 9 (II): 1-26. Further direct quotations from this article are indicated in the text by the issue and page numbers in square brackets. For the German original, see Carl Vogt, Physiologische Briefe für Gebildete aller Stände (Geisen: Rider, 1861).

102 D. I. Pisarev, “Fiziologicheskie kartiny (po Biukhneru),” RS, 1862, 2 (I): 1-51. For the German original, see Louis Buchner, Physiologische Bilder (Leipzig: Thomas, 1861), Bd. 1.

103 Of course, the analogy between social and biological “organisms” has a very long history, but in the nineteenth century it became increasingly popular, largely as a result of the “romantic philosophies” of F. W. J. Shelling and G. F. Hegel. See, for instance, a classic historical analysis in F. W. Coker, Organismic Theories of the State: Nineteenth Century Interpretations of the State as Organism or as Person (New York: Columbia University, 1910); for a more sophisticated and nuanced recent analysis, see Robert J. Richards, The Romantic Conception of Life: Science and Philosophy in the Age of Goethe (Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press, 2002); and Joshua Lambier, “The Organismic State Against Itself: Schelling, Hegel and the Life of Right,” European Romantic Review, 2008, 19(2): 131-37.

104 N. Shelgunov, “Ubytochnost’ neznaniia,” RS, 1863, 4 (I): 1-59; 5 (I): 1-40. Further direct quotations from this article are indicated in the text by the issue and page numbers in sqare brackets.

105 [N. Shelgunov], “Usloviia progressa,” RS, 1863, 6(I): 1-26.

106 The literature on the reception of Darwin and his works in Russia is quite voluminous. For English-language accounts, see Daniel P. Todes, Darwin without Malthus: The Struggle for Existence in Russian Evolutionary Thought (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1989); and Alexander Vucinich, Darwin in Russian Thought (Berkeley, CA: University of California Press, 1988).

107 On Bronn and his translation of Darwin’s works, see Sander Gliboff, H. G. Bronn, Ernst Haeckel, and the Origins of German Darwinism: A Study in Translation and Transformation (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2008), especially Chapter 4, “Bronn’s Origin,” pp. 123-54.

108 On Royer and her involvement with translating Darwin’s works, see Geneviève Fraisse, Clémence Royer: philosophe et femme de science (Paris: La Découverte, 1985); and Joy Harvey, Almost a Man of Genius: Clémence Royer, Feminism and Nineteenth-Century Science (New Brunswick, NJ: Rutgers University Press, 1997), pp. 62-80.

109 See Charles Darwin, Über die Entstehung der Arten im Thier-und Pflanzen-Reich durch natürliche Züchtung, oder Erhaltung der vervollkommneten Rassen im Kampfe um’s Daseyn. Uebers. und mit Anmerk. v. Dr. H. G. Bronn (Stuttgart: Schweizerbart, 1860); and [Ch. Darwin], De l’origine des espèces, ou des lois du progrès chez les êtres organisés par Ch. Darwin. Trad. par Clémence–Aug. Royer, avec préf. et notes du traducteur (Paris: Guillaumin, 1862).

110 Anon. [Ed. Claparède], “Darvin i ego teoriia proiskhozhdeniia vidov,” Biblioteka dlia chteniia, 1861, 11: 21-40; 12: 25-36. The authorship of this anonymous publication had been a subject of intense speculation for nearly a century until the Moscow historian of biology Iurii Chaikovskii proved that the paper was in fact a translation of Claparède’s review, see Iu. V. Chaikovskii, “O Darvine mezhdu strok,” VIET, 1983, 2: 108-19; and idem, “Pervye shagi darvinizma v Rossii,” Istoriko-biologicheskie issledovaniia, 1989, 10: 121-41. For the original review, see Ed. Claparède, “M. Darwin et sa théorie de la formation des espèces,” Revue Germanique, Française et Étrangère, 1861, 16: 523-59; 17: 232-63.

111 See, Charl’s Darvin [Charles Darwin], O proiskhozhdenii vidov v tsarstvakh zhivotnom i rastitel’nom putem estestvennogo podbora rodichei, ili sokhranenie usovershenstvovannykh porod v bor’be za sushchestvovanie, transl. by S. A. Rachinskii (SPb.: A. I. Glazunov, 1864).

112 Darwin, Origin, p. 488.

113 See, for example, Charles Lyell, Geological Evidences of the Antiquity of Man (London: John Murray, 1863); T. H. Huxley, Evidence as to Man’s Place in Nature (London: Williams & Norgate, 1863); M. J. Schleiden, Das alter des menschengeschlechts (Leipzig: W. Englemann, 1863); and Carl Vogt, Vorlesungen über den Menschen, seine Stellung in der Schöpfung und in der Geschichte der Erde (Giessen: Ricker, 1863).

114 See V. Z [aitsev], “Bibliograficheskii listok,” RS, 1864, 1 (II): 15-21. The book came out in the first week of January 1864, while the censorship permitted the distribution of the journal’s first issue that carried the announcement only on 12 January.

115 Indeed in the preceding issue, Zaitsev had reviewed the first installment of Carl Vogt’s Lectures on Man, see V. Z [aitsev], “Bibliograficheskii listok: Chelovek i mesto ego v prirode. Publichnye lektsii Karla Fogta. Izd. P. A. Gaideburova. T. 1. Vyp. 1. SPb. 1863,” RS, 1863, 11-12(II): 1-7.

116 V. Z [aitsev], “Bibliograficheskii listok. Chelovek i ego mesto v prirode. Lektsii K. Fogta. Vyp. 2. Izd. Gaideburova, SPb., 1864; Chelovek. Mesto ego v mirozdanii i v istorii zemli. Sochinenie K. Fogta. Perevod d-ra Kanshina, vyp. 1 i 2. Izd. Vol’fa, SPb. 1864,” RS, 1864, 3 (II): 55-57. For the German original, see Carl Vogt, Vorlesungen über den Menschen, seine Stellung in der Schöpfung und in der Geschichte der Erde (Giessen: Ricker, 1863).

117 D. I. Pisarev, “Progress v mire zhivotnykh i rastenii,” RS, 1864, 4 (I): 1-52; 5 (I): 43-70; 6 (I): 233-74; 7 (I): 1-46; 9 (I): 1-46.

118 Pisarev did not have access to the English original but, even though he was incarcerated in the Peter-Paul Fortress, he apparently had a copy of its French translation. He did not use Rachinskii’s rendering of “natural selection” as podbor rodichei (matching of kin). Instead, he chose the word vybor, which Rachinskii used only occasionally. Most likely Pisarev’s choice derived from Royer’s translation of Darwin’s term as “élection,” which literally means “choice,” and, thus, has a clear connotation of something being chosen, selected. This conveyed Darwin’s meaning much closer than Rachinskii’s “matching of kin.” More on Royer’s influence on Pisarev’s interpretation of Darwin’s work below. For details on the importance and intricacies of translations in this book, see the last chapter, “Apologia.”

119 Pisarev most certainly was not alone in popularizing Darwin’s book. After the appearance of Rachinskii’s translation, the leading “thick” journals The Contemporary, Reading Library, and Annals of the Fatherland also published substantial articles on the subject. But none of these articles was as extensive and detailed as Pisarev’s. See M. A. Antonovich, “Teoriia proiskhozhdeniia vidov,” Sovremennik, 1864, 3: 63-107; E. E [del’so] n, “O proiskhozhdenii vidov,” Biblioteka dlia chteniia, 1864, 6: 1-31; 7: 1-14; 8: 1-34; and K. T [imiriazev], “Kniga Darvina, ee kritiki i komentatory,” Otechestvennye zapiski, 1864, 155: 880-912; 156: 650-85; 157: 859-82; a few months later, Timiriazev’s essays were issued in book format, see K. Timiriazev, Kratkii ocherk teorii Darvina (M.: A. A. Kraevskii, 1865).

120 The available literature on the notion of progress in history is vast. For a helpful introduction, see Robert Nisbet, History of the Idea of Progress (New York: Basic, 1980).

121 See [Ch. Darwin], De l’origine des espèces, ou des lois du progrès chez les êtres organisés par Ch. Darwin.

122 For a detailed examination of the notion of progress in biology, see Michael Ruse, Monad to Man: The Concept of Progress in Evolutionary Biology (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1996); on Darwin’s attitude to the notion, see pp. 136-77. On the intersections of the notions of biological and social progress in Britain, see Peter J. Bowler, The Invention of Progress: The Victorians and the Past (Oxford: Blackwell, 1989).

123 In the first instance, Darwin stated: “The inhabitants of each successive period in the world’s history have beaten their predecessors in the race for life, and are, in so far, higher in the scale of nature; and this may account for that vague yet ill-defined sentiment, felt by many paleontologists, that organisation on the whole has progressed” (Darwin, Origin, p. 345; emphasis added). This statement in no way suggests that Darwin himself shared in “that vague yet ill-defined sentiment,” least of all, that he considered it the essence of his concept. The second time he used the word as a verb in the following passage: “Judging from the past, we may safely infer that not one living species will transmit its unaltered likeness to a distant futurity. And of the species now living very few will transmit progeny of any kind to a far distant futurity; for the manner in which all organic beings are grouped, shows that the greater number of species of each genus, and all the species of many genera, have left no descendants, but have become utterly extinct. We can so far take a prophetic glance into futurity as to foretell that it will be the common and widely-spread species, belonging to the larger and dominant groups, which will ultimately prevail and procreate new and dominant species. As all the living forms of life are the lineal descendants of those which lived long before the Silurian epoch, we may feel certain that the ordinary succession by generation has never once been broken, and that no cataclysm has desolated the whole world. Hence we may look with some confidence to a secure future of equally inappreciable length. And as natural selection works solely by and for the good of each being, all corporeal and mental endowments will tend to progress towards perfection” (Darwin, Origin, p. 489; emphasis added). Here again, Darwin speaks not of the essence of his theory, but of one possible outcome of natural selection — “perfection” — the other one being “utter extinction.”

124 On anthropomorphic explanations of animal behavior, see N. L. Krementsov, “Chelovek i zhivotnoe: k istorii povedencheskikh sopostavlenii,” in E. N. Panov, ed. Povedenie cheloveka i zhivotnykh: skhodstvo i razlichiia (Pushchino: n. p., 1989), pp. 6-28; and Nikolai Krementsov and Daniel Todes, “On Metaphors, Animals and Us,” Journal of Social Issues, 1991, 47(3): 67-82.

125 See Pisarev, “Ocherki iz istorii truda,” RS, 1863, 9 (I): 69-134; 11-12(I): 55-117. The article critically discussed American economist Henry Charles Carey’s book The Harmony of Interests: Agricultural, Manufacturing & Commercial (1851).

126 Pisarev explains that the label had been introduced as a pejorative by the German opponents of Darwin’s theory, but that he, of course, used it without any negative connotations.

127 See, Fridrikh Rolle, Karla Darvina uchenie o proiskhozhdenii vidov v tsarstve rastenii i zhivotnykh, primenennoe k istorii mirotvoreniia, transl. by M. Vladimirskii (SPb.: M. O. Vol’f, 1864); and Fridrikh Rolle, Uchenie Darvina o proiskhozhdenii vidov, obshcheponiatno izlozhennoe, transl. by S. A. Usov (SPb.: A. I. Glazunov, 1865). For the German original, see [Friedrich Rolle], Chs. Darwin’s Lehre von der Entstehung der Arten im Pflanzen-und Tierreich in ihrer Anwendung auf die Schöpfungsgeschichte dargestellt und erläutert von Dr. Friedr. Rolle (Frankfurt am Main: J. C. Hermann, 1863). For Schleicher’s work, see [August Schleicher], “Teoriia Darvina i iazykoznanie (Pis’mo Avgusta Shleikhera k d-ru Ernestu Gekkeliu),” Zagranichnyi vestnik, 1864, 2 (4-6): 241-63. It was also issued as a brochure, see A. Shleikher, Teoriia Darvina v primenenii k nauke o iazyke (SPb.: P. A. Kulish, 1864). For the German original, see August Schleicher, Die Darwinsche Theorie und die Sprachwissenschaft (Weimar: H. Boehlau, 1863).

128 G. B[lagosvetlov], “Bibliograficheskii listok: Edinstvo roda chelovecheskogo, Katrfazha. Perevod A. D. Mi-khna. Moskva. 1864. –Metamorfozy chelovecheskogo roda, Katrfazha. Perev. A. M-na. Moskva. 1864,” RS, 1864, 4(II): 52-53; for the French originals, see A. de Quatrefages, Physiologie comparée, métamorphoses de l’homme et des animaux (Paris: Baillière, 1862), and idem, Unité de l’espèce humaine (Paris: L. Hachette, 1861). The first book also appeared in English translation in the same year, see A. de Quatrefages, Metamorphoses of Man and the Lower Animals, transl. by Henry Lawson (London: Hardwicke, 1864).

129 G. B [lagosvetlov], “Bibliograficheskii listok: T. Geksli. O prichinakh iavlenii v organicheskoi prirode. Shest’ lektsii, chitannykh rabochim v Muzee prakticheskoi geologii v Londone. SPb. 1864,” RS, 1864, 7 (II): 53-58. For the English original, see T. H. Huxley, On Our Knowledge of the Causes of the Phenomena of Organic Nature (Six Lectures to Working Men) (London: Harwicke, 1862), https://archive.org/details/onourknowledgeof62prof.

130 V. Z[aitsev], “Bibliografichekii listok: Karla Darvina uchenie o proiskhozhdenii vidov v tsarstve rastenii i zhivotnykh, primenennoe k isorii mirotvoreniia. Izlozheno i ob” iasneno Fridrikhom Rolle. S prilozheniem biografii Darvina, sostanvlennoi S. Shenemanom. Perevod starshago uchitelia 5-i gimnazii M. Vladimirskogo. SPb. 1864,” RS, 1864, 8 (II): 100-02.

131 [V. Zaitsev], “Bibliograficheskii listok. Mesto cheloveka v tsarstve zhivotnom. Sochinenie Tomasa Genrikha Guksleia. Perevel s nemetskogo izdaniia d-ra V. Karusa N. Gol’denbakh. M. 1864,” RS, 1864, 10(II): 97-98.

132 N. V. Shelgunov, “Razvitie chelovecheskogo tipa v geologicheskom otnoshenii,” RS, 1865, 3 (I): 218-54.

133 The literature on the history of “social Darwinism” is vast. Useful introductions to the topic can be found in Mike Hawkins, Social Darwinism in European and American Thought, 1860-1945: Nature as Model and Nature as Threat (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1997); and Paul Crook, Darwin’s Coat-Tails: Essays on Social Darwinism (New York: Peter Lang, 2007).

134 See [Ch. Darwin], De l’origine des espèces, ou des lois du progrès chez les êtres organisés par Ch. Darwin, transl. by Clémence Royer (Paris: Guillaumin, 1862). On the role and place of Royer in French social Darwinism, see Linda L. Clark, Social Darwinism in France (Tuscaloosa, AL: University of Alabama Press, 1984).

135 Clémence Royer, “Préface,” in De l’origine des espèces, ou des lois du progrès chez les êtres organisés par Ch. Darwin, p. lvi.

136 Ibid., p. lxi. A few years later, she would elaborate and further develop her ideas in a nearly 600-page treatise, see Clémence Royer, Origine de l’homme et des sociétés (Paris: Victor Masson et fils, 1870).

137 See Thomas F. Glick, “The Impact of Darwin on Ideas about Race in the US, UK, France, Germany, and Brazil,” in Henrika Kuklick, ed., New History of Anthropology (Malden, MA: Blackwell, 2009), pp. 225-40.

138 The literature on the history of racial thought and racial debates is immense. Useful introductions to the topic could be found in Nancy Krieger, “Shades of Difference: Theoretical Underpinnings of the Medical Controversy on Black/White Differences in the United States, 1830-1870,” International Journal of Health Services, 1987, 17(2): 259-78; David N. Livingstone, Adam’s Ancestors: Race, Religion, and the Politics of Human Origins (Baltimore, MD: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2008); B. Ricardo Brown, Until Darwin: Science, Human Variety and the Origins of Race (London: Pickering & Chatto, 2010); Nicolas Bancel, Thomas David, and Dominic Thomas, eds., The Invention of Race: Scientific and Popular Representations (New York: Routledge, 2014). For an analysis of Russian anthropologists’attitudes to the issue of race, see Marina Mogilner, Homo Imperii: A History of Physical Anthropology in Russia (Lincoln, NE: University of Nebraska Press, 2013).

139 See extensive historical examinations of this subject in I. K. Mal’kova, “Istoriia i politika SShA na stranitsakh russkikh demokraticheskikh zhurnalov ‘Delo’ i ‘Slovo’,” Amerikanskii ezhegodnik, 1971: 273-94; R. F. Ivanov and I. Ia. Levitas, “N. G. Chernyshevskii o rabstve negrov v SShA i problema grazhdanskikh svobod,” idem, 1980: 118-38; O. Iu. Kazakova, “Amerika i amerikantsy v otsenke russkogo obshchestva (konets 1850-kh — 1867 g.): sotsiokul’turnye aspekty vospriiatiia”, doctoral dissertation, Orel, 2000; and A. A. Arustamova, Russko-amerikanskii dialog: istoriko-literaturnyi aspect (Perm’: Permskii universitet, 2008), http://litda.ru/images/2017-3/LDA-2017-3_all.pdf.

140 See G. Bicher-Stou, “Khizhina diadi Toma ili Zhizn’ negrov v nevol’nich’ikh shtatakh Severnoi Ameriki,” Russkii vestnik, 1857, 11-12; 1858, 1-4; and Sovremennik, 1857, 66(11-12), 1858, 67(1-2).

141 See A. Pal’mer, Khizhina diadi Toma. Povest’gospozhi Stove, raskazannaia detiam (SPb.: M. O. Vol’f, 1857). Vol’f reissued the book again in 1865.

142 See M. L. Mikhailov, “Iz Longfello. Pesni o negrakh,” Sovremennik, 1861, 3: 267-78; and V. A. Obruchev, “Nevol’nichestvo v Severnoi Amerike,” ibid.: 279-308. For the original of the book excerpted in Obruchev’s digest, see John S. C. Abbott, South and North (New York: Abbey and Abbott, 1860).

143 A. Toporov, “Nevol’nichestvo v Iuzhno-Amerikanskikh Shtatakh,” RS, 1861, 4(II): 1-28 (p. 26).

144 N. Strakhov, “Durnye priznaki,” Vremia, 1862, 11: 158-72. All subsequent quotations are from this source.

145 Here I use Darwin’s own language to convey the meaning of Strakhov’s praise. Strakhov himself actually used the Russian expressions “estestvennoe izbranie” and “zhiznennaia konkurentsiia,” which were literal translations of the French “l’élection naturelle” and “concurrence vitale” used by Royer. Perhaps, Strakhov did not even have the English original handy. He did not try to find Russian analogues to Darwin’s own “natural selection” and “struggle for existence,” as had the translator of Claparede’s review of Darwin’s work, who had translated them literally as “estestvennaia otbornost’” and “bor’ba za zhizn’,” respectively. See Anon., “Darvin i ego teoriia proiskhozhdeniia vidov,” Biblioteka dlia chteniia, 1861, 11: 21-40; 12: 25-36. For details on the importance and intricacies of translations in this book, see the last chapter, “Apologia.”

146 G. E. Blagosvetlov, “Politika,” RS, 1861, 2 (III): 15.

147 E. Rekliu [E. Reclus], “Politika,” RS, 1863, 11-12(III): 42.

148 V. Z [aitsev], “Bibliografichekii listok: Edinstvo roda chelovecheskogo. Kartfazha. Perevod A. D. Mikh... na. M. 1864,” RS, 1864, 8 (II): 93-100.

149 M. A. Antonovich, “Russkomu Slovu,” Sovremennik, 1864, 105(11-12): 164.

150 V. Zaitsev, “Bibliograficheskii listok. Otvet moim obviniteliam po povodu moego mneniia o tsvetnykh plemenakh,” RS, 1864, 12(II): 20-26.

151 Anon., “Po povodu statei ‘Russkogo slova’ o nevol’nichestve,” Iskra, 1865, 8: 114-17. All the subsequent quotations are from this source. Emphasis in original.

152 On Nozhin, see A. E. Gaisinovich, “Biolog-shestidesiatnik N. D. Nozhin i ego rol’v razvitii embriologii i darvinizma v Rossii,” Zhurnal obshchei biologii, 1952, 13(5): 377-92.

153 According to Gaisinovich, Elie Metchnikoffrefers to such a translation in his memoirs, but I was unable to find any indication that it had ever been published. Perhaps, as happened with the majority of Nozhin’s works, it perished after his untimely death in April 1866. The first Russian translation of Muller’s book appeared only in 1932, see Frits Miuller, Za Darvina (М.: Gos. Med. izd-vo, 1932). For the German original, see Fritz Müller, Für Darwin (Leipzig: Wilhelm Engelmann, 1864). For an English translation, see FritzMüller, Facts and Arguments for Darwin: With Additions by The Author, transl. by W. S. Dallas (London: John Murray, 1869).

154 A few months after the review was published, the book came out in two different Russian translations, see Karl Fokht, Chteniia o poleznykh i vrednykh zhivotnykh (SPb.: L. P. Shelgunova, 1865); idem, Chteniia o mnimovrednykh i mnimopoleznykh zhivotnykh (SPb.: M. O. Vol’f, 1865). For the German original, see Carl Vogt, Vorlesungen über nützliche und schädliche verkannte und verläumdete Thiere (Leipzig: Ernst Keil, 1864).

155 Nozhin gives the full translation of the title, indicating that he had used the 1864 London edition of Darwin’s Journal. Just a few months after the publication of Nozhin’s article, a complete Russian translation of the book in two volumes was published in St. Petersburg. See Ch. Darvin, Puteshestvie vokrug sveta na korable Bigl’, 2 vols. (SPb.: A. S. Golitsyn, 1865).

156 See V. A. Zaitsev, “Bibliograficheskii listok: Charl’z Darvin, Puteshestvie vokrug sveta na korable Bigl’. Perevod pod redaktsiei A. Beketova. Tom 1. Izd. Golitsina. SPb. 1865,” RS, 1865, 5(II): 31-32.

157 See N. V. Shelgunov, L. P. Shelgunova, M. L. Mikhailov, Vospominaniia v 2-kh tomakh (M.: Khudozhestvennaia literatura, 1967).

158 See V. N. Sazhin, “Aleksandr Nikiforovich Morigerovskii – obshchestvennyi deiatel’i izdatel’,” in Knizhnoe delo v Rossii vo vtoroi polovine XIX – nachale XX veka (L.: GPB, 1986), vol. 2, pp. 10-22.

159 See, for instance, the memoirs of Russian Word’s author, D. I. Stakheev, “Gruppy i portrety. Listochki vospominanii,” Istoricheskii vestnik, 1907, 109(7-9): 424-37, especially, pp. 433-36.

160 See I. E. Barenbaum, “Tipografiia zhurnalov ‘Russkoe slovo,’ ‘Delo’ (izdatel’skaia deiatel’nost’Blagosvetlova, Riumina, Morigerovskogo, Tushnova),” in idem, ed., Knizhnoe delo v kul’tunoi i obshchestvennoi zhizni Peterburga-Petrograda-Leningrada (L.: LGIK, 1984), pp. 30-43.

161 [Florinskii], “Doktorskii ekzamen,” p. 201.

162 For the English-language history of the publication and censorship troubles, see Daniel P. Todes, “Biological Psychology and the Tsarist Censor: The Dilemma of Scientific Development,” Bulletin of the History of Medicine, 1984, 58: 529-44.

163 I. Sechenov, “Refleksy golovnogo mozga,” MV, 1863, 47: 461-84; 48: 493-512. For historical assessments of this work and its author, see M. G. Iaroshevskii, Sechenov i mirovaia psikhologicheskaia mysl’ (M.: Nauka, 1981); and David Joravsky, Russian Psychology: A Critical History (Cambridge, MA: Blackwell, 1989).

164 Their daughter Olga would be born on 23 January 1866.

165 For publications in verse, the basic unit for calculating the honorarium was one line.

166 For details of financial arrangements in Russian Word, see Kuznetsov, Nigilisty, pp. 93-96.

167 On the censorship of medical publications, see Anon., “Zakon 8 marta 1862 goda,” MV, 1862 (21 April): 153-56.

168 See Lemke, Ocherki; idem, Epokha; and Ruud, Fighting Words, especially, Chapter 9, “The Reform of 6 April 1865,” and Chapter 10, “The First Year of the Reformed System, 1865-66,” pp. 137-67.

169 See Todes, “Biological Psychology and the Tsarist Censor.”

170 I will discuss these steps in the next chapter.

171 For details on how the three “warnings” were issued and the journal’s suspension, see S. S. Konkin, “Zhurnal ‘Russkoe slovo’ i tsenzura v 1863-66 godakh,” Uchenye zapiski Sterlitamakskogo gosudarstvennogo pedagogicheskogo instituta, 1962, 8: 231-54.

172 See RGIA, f. 776, op. 3, d. 161, ll. 22-25.

Table des illustrations

Légende Fig. 2-1. The title page of the first issue of Russian Word, identifying it as a “literary-learned journal” and carrying the names of its publisher “Count Gr. Kushelev-Bezborodko” and its typographer, “Riumin and Co.” Courtesy of RNB.
URL http://books.openedition.org/obp/docannexe/image/7390/img-1.jpg
Fichier image/jpeg, 67k
Légende Fig. 2-2. Grigorii Blagosvetlov, c.1860s. A lithograph from the posthumous edition of his collected works. From G. E. Blagosvetlov, Sochineniia (SPb.: E. A. Blagosvetlova, 1882). Courtesy of BAN.
URL http://books.openedition.org/obp/docannexe/image/7390/img-2.jpg
Fichier image/jpeg, 135k
Légende Fig. 2-3. A large-format cartoon of the Russian journalistic scene that appeared as a supplement to the satirical journal Splinter (Zanoza) on 3 March 1863, under the title “A concerto in C-dur(nom) tone.” The title was a play on words: “C-dur,” a major musical scale, and a Russian expression, “durnoi ton,” a loan translation of the French mauvais ton. Drawn by Petr Borel’, a well-known artist, it depicts an orchestra made up from the editors of major journals and newspapers, whose titles are written either on the musical instruments they play or on their clothing. In the upper left corner is a ringing bell — a clear allusion to Alexander Herzen’s eponymous newspaper. A Muse sitting in the chair in the upper right and closing her ears in disgust apparently signifies Russia. Petr Valuev, the minister of internal affairs (second row on the right) holds a tuning-fork, while Vasilii Tsee, the head of the St. Petersburg Censorship Committee (on Valuev’s left), conducts the concerto. Three censors (in the upper row, right to left) Alexander Petrov, unidentified, and Vladimir Beketov moderate the performance.Periodicals and their editors. First row, left to right: 1. Grigorii Eliseev, on top of him Amplii Ochkin, Essays, a daily newspaper; 2. Vasilii Kurochkin, Spark, a satirical journal; 3. Petr Men’kov, Military Collection, an official journal of the War Ministry; 4. Ivan Balabin, People’s Wealth, a newspaper; 5. Unidentified; 6. Viktor Askochenskii, Home Conversation, a journal; 7. Nikolai Strakhov, Time, a journal published by the Dostoevsky brothers, the cartoon depicts not the editor, but the journal’s leading contributor, whose publications led to shutting the journal down in just a few months after the appearance of the cartoon; 8. Mikhail Rozengeim, Splinter, a satirical journal; 9. Alexander Rotchev, Herald of the City Police, a newspaper; 10. Ivan Goncharov, Northern Post, a daily newspaper of the Ministry of Internal Affairs; 11. Il’ia Arsen’ev, the editor of the political section of Northern Post, who in 1865 would found the first Russian tabloid, Petersburg Leaf; 12. Dmitrii Romanovskii, Russian Invalid, a newspaper of the War Ministry.Second row, left to right: 1. Valentin Korsh, St. Petersburg News, a daily newspaper; 2. Konstantin Trubnikov, Burse News, a daily newspaper; 3. Nikolai Pavlov, Our Time, a newspaper; 4. Viktor Kapel’mans, Journal de St.-Pétersbourg, a French-language newspaper; 5. Nikolai Pisarevskii, Modern Word, a daily newspaper; 6. Mikhail Katkov, Russian Herald, a journal, and Moscow News, a newspaper; 7. Ivan Aksakov, Day, a weekly newspaper; 8. Aleksei Pisemskii, Reading Library, a journal; 9. Grigorii Blagosvetlov, Russian Word, a journal; 10. Nikolai Nekrasov, The Contemporary, a journal; 11. Andrei Kraevskii, Voice, a daily newspaper; 12. Pavel Usov, Northern Bee, a daily newspaper; 13. Al’bert Starchevskii, Fatherland’s Son, a daily newspaper; 14. Vladimir Zotov, Illustration, a journal. Courtesy of RO IRLI.
URL http://books.openedition.org/obp/docannexe/image/7390/img-3.jpg
Fichier image/jpeg, 521k
Légende Fig. 2-4. A cartoon published in Spark on 23 December 1864 (p. 640) under the title: “A good-natured editor whose left hand does not know what the right hand does.” It depicts a two-faced man of Blagosvetlov’s considerable likeness patting a black man on the head with his left hand, while pulling the hair of another black man with his right hand. The left sleeve of the man’s jacket is labeled “Politics” and the right “Bibliography.” A caption underneath the cartoon reads: “All these sections are united into a cohesive whole, by the unity of thought represented by the journal, and by the convictions of its regular contributors ([from] Announcement. ‘Russian Word’).” Courtesy of RNB.
URL http://books.openedition.org/obp/docannexe/image/7390/img-4.jpg
Fichier image/jpeg, 474k

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