Everyd ay Life of a Provincial Estate: A Diary of a Serv ant of the Ur al Landowners Golubtsov
Marina Larionova, a specialist in the history of Russia, a candidate of historical sciences, presents her Everyday Life of a Provincial Estate (Yekaterinburg, 2013). The book was written with reference to a rare historical source, a diary of a servant of the Ural Landowners Golubtsov that is kept in the State Archive of Sverdlovsk Region (GASO, f. 67, op. 1, d. 69). The diary is anonymous, and the authorship was established as a result of an inquiry into its origin; Matvey Andreev, a descendant of a family of serfs was finally given credit as the author, and, according to the diary, he was a petty bourgeois of Kungur, an uyezd town, by the time the diary was started. For 3 years and 5 months (1872–1875), he wrote an account of daily life in the estate and in the manor house located in Aleksandrovskoye Settlement of Vladimir Platonovich Golubtsov, a Perm landowner. The diary describes the everyday life of a Ural petty manorial estate located in Krasnoufimsk Uyezd, Perm Governorate, the day-to-day routine of the owner and the dwellers of the manor, the relationships between them and the ones characteristic of the life of an uyezd community, the emotional experience of the people mentioned in the diary, and other details shedding light on the previously unknown events in the history of the Urals. In her talk with Lyudmila Dashkevich and Yevgeny Neklyudov, professors of history, research fellows of the Institute for History and Archaeology (Russian Academy of Sciences, Ural Branch), and with Irina Shalina, professor of philology, the author discusses the academic significance and informational potential of the source in question. The comparison drawn of the document with some previously known similar sources gives evidence proving its uniqueness conditioned by its comprehensive character, the author’s viewpoint and the quality of the publication. Thus, it does not only comply with the text and has few editorial corrections, it also contains a variety of academic historical, cultural and biographic commentaries. The diary both describes the problems a 19th-century manor could face on a daily basis and dwells on some general issues connected with the relationships between social classes, the historical psychology of servants, the perseverance of serf consciousness after the abolition of serfdom, the patriarchal character of life, and the modernization of the region’s economy.