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French historiography of the Crimean war (1853-1856): main trends and tendencies

Journal: RUDN Journal of Russian History (Vol.19, No. 1)

Publication Date:

Authors : ; ;

Page : 240-253

Keywords : Crimean war; historiography; Second Empire; history of war; Napoleon III; Annals school; «history of battles»;

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This article is devoted to the study of the French historiographical tradition of studying the Crimean war. Due to the fact that the French historiography of the Crimean campaign has diff erences from the Russian or Anglo-Saxon, it is interesting to turn to the study of the features that are characteristic for the works of French historians. One of the key theses of this article is the statement of the following situation in French historical science: since the second half of the 19th century the Crimean war was studied in the framework of studies on the history of the Second Empire. In the late twentieth century the scientifi c tradition has undergone certain changes, as a result of which the events of 1853-1856 became the subject of separate studies on the military history of France and historical anthropology. This feature infl uenced the perception of the war in French public opinion and the scientifi c community and led to the diff erentiation of certain problems and subjects directly related to the history of the Crimean war. The study of French historiography allows us to determine the themes that prevailed in the scientifi c thought of France during the second half of the 19th - 20th centuries, as well as those trends that are currently key in discussing the prerequisites, the nature, the results of the military campaign of 1853-1856. The authors conclude that the scientifi c and possibly public interest in the Crimean war in France is much lower than in Russia. The events of 1853-1856, largely overshadowed by the discussions and memory of the First World war, gradually turn into a little-known period of French history. However, the jubilee years associated with the Crimean war and the siege of Sevastopol are an important point that allows us to revisit the study of both the military campaign and diplomacy, and in general the history of Russian-French relations.

Last modified: 2020-08-04 06:25:15