"Let books be your dining table, / And you shall be full of delights. / Let them be your
And you shall sleep restful nights" (St. Ephraim the Syrian).

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Imagining Kievan Rus'

Debates continue to rage among East-Slavic Christians as to such questions as Ukrainian independence, Ukrainian Orthodoxy, the role of Russia, and how the latter can today claim in some respects to be the "mother" of the former when it was through Kievan Rus that what we today call Russia received its faith. A new book looks at some of this changing history and debate: Christian Raffensperger, Reimagining Europe: Kievan Rus' in the Medieval World (Harvard Historical Studies, 2012, 340pp.)

About this book the publisher tells us:
An overriding assumption has directed scholarship in both European and Slavic history: that Kievan Rus’ was part of a Byzantine commonwealth separate from Europe. Raffensperger refutes this, and offers a new frame for two hundred years of history, in which Rus’ is understood as part of medieval Europe, and East is not so neatly divided from West.

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