Science and Ideology at the Turn of the 1930—1940s: towards the Reconstruction of the Scientific Biography of Vasily Struve

Publication type Article
Status Published
Affiliation: Institute of World History RAS
Address: Russian Federation, Moscow
Journal nameISTORIYA

The article is devoted to the reconstruction of the scientific biography of Vasily Struve at the turn of the 1930—1940s, which can be regarded as reflection of the general evolution of historical science in the USSR. Struve played an important role in the development of scientific policy in the USSR in the 1930s, he substantiated a number of important theses that determined the attitude of the authorities not only to historical science in particular, but also to science in general in the USSR. Struve himself sought to show loyalty to the teachings of the classics of Marxism-Leninism of the Soviet edition, but it was namely in this aspect that he failed. As Struve’s speech at the discussion of volume II of World History in 1940 shows, he was inclined to fidelity to facts, and not ideological schemes, which he was rather forced to pay tribute to. Nevertheless, Struve was not considered an ally either for the authorities or among the new generation of Marxist scholars who turned the Soviet Marxist scheme of historical progress against Struve himself — one of its authors. The desire to sit on two chairs was one of the factors that did not allow the talent of the Struve-scientist to develop fully, while the efforts of the Struve-administrator to develop scientific policy in the USSR were ultimately in vain.

Keywordshistory of science, scientific policy, world history, historical progress, Marxism, state and science, archives, Vasily Struve
Publication date30.06.2022
Number of characters26191
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