Russische Ethnographie und imperiale Politik im 18. Jahrhundert
In this study, Marcus Köhler describes the development of ethnography in Russia in terms of a differentiation of a separate scientific discipline at the threshold between imperial expansion, scientific zeal and new initiative. He analyses reports on the great exploratory expeditions of the 18th century to Siberia and the Caucasus for the first time in the light of the development of ethnology in Russia. What interests did Imperial Russia pursue with the study of the ethnic groups on its periphery? How did the explorers, who were predominantly West Europeans, perceive the ethnic groups of the Empire and what scientific statements did they make about them? How did the Centre deal with the increasing complexity of its multi-ethnic empire? It would seem fitting to conclude that for the territorial empire Russia not all questions can be answered using blueprints from the overseas expansion of Western Europe. Russian ethnography was based on other interests and strategies.