Member book, Sablin, Ivan, The Rise and Fall of Russia's Far Eastern Republic, 1905–1922: Nationalisms, Imperialisms, and Regionalisms in and after the Russian Empire

Ivan Sablin's picture

Routledge has recently published my book in which I continue to explore the connections between Asian (Inner and East Asian) and Russian history. In my new book, I trace the emergance of the Far Eastern Republic - a post-imperial state on the territory of the former Russian Empire which had the Russians, Koreans, Buryat-Mongols, Ukrainians, Tatars, and Jews as its constituent nations - in 1920-1921 and its unification with Soviet Russia a year later. 

Sablin, Ivan, The Rise and Fall of Russia's Far Eastern Republic, 1905–1922: Nationalisms, Imperialisms, and Regionalisms in and after the Russian Empire. London: Routledge, 2018, 300 pages, 20 B/W Illus. ISBN: 978-1-13-831730-7. 

The book focuses on the region of the Russian Far East between Lake Baikal and the Pacific Ocean, including the territories annexed from the Qing Empire in 1858-1860, during the collapse of the Russian Empire and the formation of the Soviet Union. During this turbulent period, a variety of actors participated in shaping the region's future. 

Focusing on diverse nationalisms, regionalisms, and imperialisms, the book traced the making of the Russian Far East as a new region that found its political form in the Far Eastern Republic (FER) during the Russian Empire/Soviet Union transformation. The nationalisms under study included discourses and policies of imagining and mobilizing Russians, Buryat-Mongols, Koreans, Ukrainians, and other groups in the Russian Far East. The discussion of imperialisms explored Japanese and American attempts to include the region into their spheres of influence, as well as the legacies of Russian expansionism in North and East Asia and the Bolshevik efforts in exporting the revolution to Mongolia, Korea, China, and Japan and possibly turning them into Soviet dependencies. The regionalisms in question were the various projects of imagining distinct Siberian and Far Eastern communities as potentially independent or as part of the heterogeneous Russian nation. Although the regionalisms and imperialisms were important for the making of the FER, it was Russian imperial and post-imperial nationalism formulated in state-centered defensive terms which played the central role in the establishment and abolition of the republic in 1920–1922 and the consolidation of the Russian Far East as a region in the Soviet imperial formation.

The FER could be interpreted as a Bolshevik hoax intended against the Japanese intervention in the region, but it was neither carefully organized nor seamlessly implemented. As a product of confluences between nationalisms and regionalisms, however, the FER became a manifestation of regional intellectual traditions and sporadic politics of the imperial transformation. The Bolsheviks appropriated the left-liberal imperial nationalism of their political opponents, which was articulated during the First Russian Revolution and especially in the State Duma of the Russian Empire. The liberals, moderate socialists, and later moderate nationalists aspired for reconstructing the Russian Empire, and the Bolsheviks seemed to offer some elements of the once envisioned reforms. Their nationalism was state-centered and selectively inclusive in social and ethnic terms, even though the Russians still occupied a central place in the new imperial hierarchy. 

Table of Contents


Chapter 1: Left-liberal nationalism and self-organization east of Baikal, 1905–1916

Chapter 2: Post-imperial particularisms in the Russian Far East, 1917–1919

Chapter 3: Nationalisms and the making of the Far Eastern Republic, 1920

Chapter 4: The Far Eastern Republic and the Priamur State Formation, 1921

Chapter 5: Competing nationalisms and Sovietization in the Russian Far East, 1922


For further information, please, visit: