Archaeology in the Ex-USSR: Post-Perestroyka Problems

By Dolukhanov, P. M. .. .. | Antiquity, March 1993 | Go to article overview

Archaeology in the Ex-USSR: Post-Perestroyka Problems


Dolukhanov, P. M. .. .., Antiquity


Structure

For about 70 years the USSR possessed the world's largest network of archaeological research (Trigger 1989). The foundation of this system was laid on 18 April 1919, when Lenin signed a decree establishing the Russian Academy for the History of Material Culture (RAIMK) in place of the Imperial Archaeological Commission. The same decree proclaimed all the historical and archaeological monuments on the Russian territory to be state property.

The establishment of a centralized archaeological structure in the newly founded communist state was instigated by Nikolai Ya. Marr (1865-1934), the Russian linguist and archaeologist of Marxist orientation.

From the very beginning the archaeology in the USSR was largely viewed as a device for official communist indoctrination. The study of material remains (hence the name of the archaeological institution) was regarded as an instrument for promoting Marxist dogmas in relation to the socio-economic development of pre-class and early-class societies. For a long time Marr's teaching based on the formal similarities between the evolution of languages and Marxist explanation of socio-economic evolution was officially regarded as a guideline for Soviet theoretical and practical archaeology. Marr's concept was refuted after Stalin in 1950 criticized it as 'a vulgarization of Marxism'.

The structure of Soviet archaeology was repeatedly modified in the course of recent decades until it finally acquired its full status in the 1970s.

At that time at least three hierarchical levels could be distinguished:

All-Union institutions

These were entitled to carry out archaeological investigations on the whole territory of the USSR:

Research Institutes of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR

Institute of Archaeology, Moscow (Directors: Acad. V.P. Alexeyev; died in 1992; acting director: Prof. R.M. Munchayev);

Leningrad (later St Petersburg) Branch of the Institute of Archaeology (Director: Prof. V.M. Masson);

Institute of History, Ethnography and Archaeology, Novosibirsk (Director: Acad. A. Derevyanko).

Each of these institutes included several historically evolved departments, e.g. Department of Stone Age, Department of Central Asia and Siberia, Department of North Pontic: (Classical) Archaeology, Department of Finno-Slavic Archaeology, Laboratory for Archaeological Technology (St Petersburg); Department of Neolithic and Bronze Age, Department of Slavic Archaeology, Department of Classical Archaeology, Department of Theoretical Archaeology, Department of Archaeological Records, Laboratory for Scientific Methods (Moscow).

Universities

Large departments of archaeology exist at the Moscow State University and at the St Petersburg State University. There are departments of Archaeology at the universities of Ekaterinburg (Sverdlovsk), Novosibirsk, Tomsk, Vladivostok, Syktyvkar (Komi Republic in the Russian North), and some other universities.

The universities carry out mostly teaching, both on undergraduate and postgraduate (aspirantura) levels. At the same time, the universities are engaged in research and carry out field projects, mostly on a smaller scale than the institutes belonging to the Academy of Science. The inadequate co-operation between the 'academic' institutions and the universities was one of the main shortcomings of Soviet science inherited by the present regime.

Museums

The most important sections of archaeology, housing considerable collections, are at the State Museum of History, Moscow; The State Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg; The Pushkin State Museum of Fine Art, Moscow; Anthropological and Ethnographic Museum of the Russian Academy of Sciences, St Petersburg.

Archaeological and prehistoric departments at these museums carry out many archaeological expeditions: e.g. the Hermitage Museum has numerous archaeological missions in Central Asia, the North Pontic area and the Russian northwest. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Archaeology in the Ex-USSR: Post-Perestroyka Problems
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.