The TU Department of History presented the 2017 Cadenhead-Settle Memorial Lecture featuring Donald J. Raleigh, professor of Russian history at University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, on Monday, September 18. If anyone missed the lecture, it is now featured online here. The talk was titled “Russia 1917: Some Reflections on the 100th Anniversary.”
Raleigh’s presentation examined the long- and short-term causes of the February Revolution of 1917 that toppled 300 years of Romanov rule, including the social polarization that unfolded afterward and the reasons the Bolsheviks came to power and held on to it. Raleigh argued that how the revolution — what has often been called the most important event of the 20th century — is understood at any point in time reflects as much contemporaneous issues, politics and subjectivities as anything else. He followed the story up to what’s going on today in Russia.
Donald J. Raleigh is the Jay Richard Judson Distinguished Professor of Russian History and director of the Center for Slavic, Eurasian and East European Studies at UNC. He has authored, translated and edited numerous books on modern Russian history including Revolution on the Volga (1986), Experiencing Russia’s Civil War (2002) and Soviet Baby Boomers (2012), which was short-listed for the Pushkin House Prize in Great Britain and won the Southern Conference on Slavic Studies Books Prize. He currently is working on a biography of Soviet leader Leonid Ilich Brezhnev.