Department of History
 

David Ransel

  • Robert F. Byrnes Professor Emeritus, Department of History

Education

  • Ph.D. at Yale University, 1969

Contact Information

Ballantine Hall, Rm. 833
(812) 855-8036

Background

David Ransel

Ransel specializes in the history of politics and society in Russia. His contributions include The Politics of Catherinian Russia (Yale, 1975), a study of political clienteles. He edited The Family in Imperial Russia (Illinois, 1978), the first collection of essays on Russian family life. His second monograph, Mothers of Misery: Child Abandonment in Russia (Princeton, 1988) opened the field of the history of charity in Russia. He followed this with studies of village life, including the reconstruction of an ethnography of peasant women and children, Village Life in Late Tsarist Russia (Indiana, 1993) and another monograph, Village Mothers: Three Generations of Change in Russia and Tataria (Indiana, 2000), a book based on oral testimony collected from 100 village women throughout Russia. Ransel then published two further collections, Imperial Russia: New Histories for the Empire, and Polish Encounters, Russian Identity. A new monograph by Ransel appeared in 2009, A Russian Merchant’s Tale: The Life and Adventures of Ivan Alekseevich Tolchënov, Based on His Diary (Indiana University Press). Ransel is publishing another volume soon, titled Everyday Life in Russia, Past and Present (Indiana University Press, 2014), co-edited with Choi Chatterjee, Karen Petrone, and Mary Cavender. He is the author of several dozen articles on these and related topics. He is currently at work on two projects: a study of two generations of workers in the industrial suburbs of Moscow, and studies of illegal land seizures by developers and their political allies of culturally protected sites in the Moscow region.

Ransel served in the past as editor-in-chief of the Slavic Review (1980-85), editor-in-chief of the American Historical Review (1985-95), and director of the Russian and East European Institute (1995-2009).

Research Interests

  • Modern Russia
  • Family and social history

Publication Highlights

Books

The Politics of Catherinian Russia: the Panin Party. (Yale University Press, 1975).

Mothers of Misery: Child Abandonment in Russia. (Princeton University Press, 1988).

Village Life in Late Tsarist Russia. (Indiana University Press, 1993).

Imperial Russia: New Histories for the Empire. (Indiana University Press, 1998).

Village Mothers: Three Generations of Change in Russia and Tataria. (Indiana University Press, 2000).

Polish Encounters, Russian Identity. (Indiana University Press. , 2005)

A Russian Merchant’s Tale: The Life and Adventures of Ivan Alekseevich Tolchënov, Based on His Diary (Indiana University Press, 2009).