Skip to main content
    • Aa
    • Aa
  • Get access
    Check if you have access via personal or institutional login
  • Cited by 1
  • Cited by
    This article has been cited by the following publications. This list is generated based on data provided by CrossRef.

    Dannreuther, Roland and Kennedy, James 2007. The International Relations of the "Transition": Ernest Gellner’s Social Philosophy and Political Sociology. International Political Sociology, Vol. 1, Issue. 4, p. 339.

  • Comparative Studies in Society and History, Volume 48, Issue 4
  • October 2006, pp. 762-797

Ethnonationalism, Assimilation, and the Social Worlds of the Jewish Bolsheviks in Fin de Siècle Tsarist Russia

  • Liliana Riga (a1)
  • DOI:
  • Published online: 09 August 2006

This article offers biographical sketches of the Jewish members of the Bolshevik revolutionary élite. It explores how their commitments to socialist universalism and eventual identification with Bolshevism were influenced by experiences and identities as Jews in fin de siècle Tsarist Russia. Situating them within a comparative historical sociology of ethnicity and identity across the Empire, I consider the ways in which ambiguities of assimilation, ethnic exclusion, and ethnocultural marginality influenced their attraction to Bolshevik socialism. In doing so, I revise the traditional argument that that the Bolsheviks of Jewish origin were highly assimilated “non-Jewish Jews” whose Jewishness played no role in their political radicalism. Instead, the claim is made that for the Jewish Bolshevik élite ascriptive Jewishness was a social fact mediated by ethnopolitical context, and therefore a dimension of varying significance to their radicalism, even for those for whom Jewishness was not a claimed identity.

Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Comparative Studies in Society and History
  • ISSN: 0010-4175
  • EISSN: 1475-2999
  • URL: /core/journals/comparative-studies-in-society-and-history
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *