Reginald Zelnik uses a single episode—a militant strike at the Kreenholm factory, Europe's largest textile plant—to explore the broad historical moment. In examining this crucial event of Russian history he sheds fresh light on local power relations, high politics in St. Petersburg, controversies over the rule of law, and the origins of the Russian labor movement. Zelnik sees this pivotal moment in Russian labor history as the beginning step in the series of conflicts that eventually led to the upheavals of the early twentieth century.
Reginald E. Zelnik is Professor of History at the University of California, Berkeley. He is the author of Labor and Society in Tsarist Russia (1971) and the editor and translator of A Radical Worker in Tsarist Russia: The Autobiography of Semon Ivanovich Kanatchikov (1986).
"With scrupulous attention to his sources, elegant presentation of narrative detail, and a flair for psychological analysis, Zelnik has managed to tell the story of a small episode in a manner that illuminates the grand issues of imperial Russian history. It is a remarkable achievement."—Laura Engelstein, Princeton University
"Zelnik has allowed the wonderfully textured account of the strike to illuminate some of the most gnarled problems in Russian labor history. . . . A breakthrough work, one that challenges more conventional labor historians to rethink the very nature of the field."—Ronald Grigor Suny, University of Michigan
"A tour de force, a magnificent example of Zelnik's capacities for historical reconstruction."—Daniel Orlovsky, Southern Methodist University