How St. Petersburg Learned to Study Itself: The Russian Idea of Kraevedenie considers the origins and evolutions of kraevedenie, looking specifically at the role that movements and institutions that emerged in early twentieth-century St. Petersburg played in the formation of this discipline. Based on extensive work in archives in St. Petersburg, it looks at the historical preservation movement that was spearheaded by participants in the World of Art circle and contributors to the journal Starye gody. It considers the pedagogical excursion movement and specifically the influence of Ivans Grevs and Nikolai Antsiferov. It also discusses the operations and role of the Central Bureau of Kraevedenie in the 1920s.The original English-language edition of this book (Penn State University Press, 2006) received both the South Central MLA book award and the Nikolai Antsiferov Prize for the best work on St. Petersburg by a foreign author.
Emily D. Johnson is the Brian and Sandra O’ Brien Professor of Russian at the University of Oklahoma. She earned a Ph.D. in Russian Literature from Columbia University. Along with Julie Buckler, she coedited the volume Rites of Place: Public Commemoration in Russia and Eastern Europe (Northwestern University Press, 2013). She also served as the editor and translator for Arsenii Formakov, Gulag Letters (Yale University Press, 2017). She is co-editor, along with Alan Barenberg, of the volume Rethinking the Gulag: Identities, Sources, Legacies (Indiana University Press, 2022). She works on St. Petersburg in Russian history and literature, the history of the Soviet labor camp system, and also on contemporary Russian popular culture.