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Register of the Aleksandr Moiseevich Nekrich Papers
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • Biographical Note
  • Scope and Content Note
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Aleksandr Moiseevich Nekrich papers,
    Date (inclusive): 1940-1996
    Collection number: 96051
    Creator: Nekrich, A. M. (Aleksandr Moiseevich)
    Extent: 62 manuscript boxes (25.8 linear feet)
    Repository: Hoover Institution on War, Revolution, and Peace
    Stanford, California 94305-6010
    Abstract: Correspondence, writings, notes, printed matter, and photocopies of Soviet, American and German government documents, relating to twentieth-century Soviet history and foreign relations, the Soviet Union during World War II, and Soviet historiography.
    Physical Location: Hoover Institution Archives
    Languages: Russian, and English.

    Administrative Information


    Collection is open for research.

    Publication Rights

    For copyright status, please contact the Hoover Institution Archives.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Aleksandr Moiseevich Nekrich papers, [Box no.], Hoover Institution Archives.

    Acquisition Information



    Increments may have been received since this finding aid was prepared. Please check Stanford University's online catalog at http://searchworks.stanford.edu/  to find the full extent of the collection.

    Biographical Note

    1920 March 3 Born, Baku, USSR
    1941 M.A. in History, Moscow State University, USSR
    1942-1945 Military service in the Soviet Army
    1949 Ph.D. in History, USSR Academy of Science, Institute of History, Moscow
    1950-1956 Junior Scholar, USSR Academy of Science, Institute of History, Moscow
    1956-1976 Senior Scholar, USSR Academy of Sciences, Institute of History (reorganized in 1968 as the Institute of World History), Moscow
    1963 Post-doctoral degree in History, USSR Academy of Sciences, Institute of History, Moscow
    1976 October Emigrated to the United States
    1976-1987 Senior Research Fellow, Russian Research Center of Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass.
    1977, 1980 Visiting Lecturer, Brandeis University, Waltham, Mass.
    1980-1981 Visiting Professor, Tübingen University, Federal Republic of Germany
    1981 Visiting Scholar, Australian National University, Canberra
    1982-1986 Editor-in-Chief, Obozrenie Magazine (Paris)
    1983 Fellow, Slavic Research Center, Hokkaido University, Sapporo, Japan
    1993 September 2 Died, Cambridge, Mass.

    Scope and Content Note

    This collection consists of the papers of Professor Aleksandr Moiseevich Nekrich, and covers mainly the period after he emigrated to the United States in 1976. It includes correspondence, writings, printed matter, and photocopies of Soviet, American, and German government documents, relating to twentieth-century Soviet history and foreign relations, the Soviet Union during World War II, and Soviet historiography.
    Born in Baku, Azerbaijan, Nekrich graduated from Moscow State University and earned a Ph.D. at Moscow's Institute of History of the Academy of Sciences, where he also received a post-doctoral degree. From 1956 until 1976, he held the title of senior scholar at the institute.
    In 1965, he published his famous book June 22, 1941, an account of Stalin's pre-war record, which also got translated in the West. The official Soviet view was that he had been a steady military commander of great wisdom. Stalin's crimes had been revealed years before by Nikita S. Khrushchev, but Dr. Nekrich's documentation of Stalin's blunders and Soviet unpreparedness for the German invasion of 1941 struck a raw nerve in Moscow, and he was expelled from the Communist Party in 1967. His freedom to write and work was then curtailed by the academic establishment, which was subservient to the Party's ideology. Finally, in 1976, Dr. Nekrich was allowed to leave the Soviet Union; he emigrated to the United States, where he joined the Harvard faculty as a research fellow, attaining the rank of senior fellow in 1987.
    After he left the Soviet Union, more of Dr. Nekrich's books appeared on both sides of the Atlantic. They include The Punished Peoples, on Stalin's banishment of whole nationalities; Dr. Nekrich himself witnessed deportations in the Crimea, and his book traced the fates of those ethnic groups. (See also the entry for Crimean Tatars in the SUBJECT FILE.) Later, with Michael Geller, he wrote Utopia in Power, a widely acclaimed history of the Soviet Union. Fluent in German, he also completed a study of Soviet-German relations between the wars (see "Pariahs, Partners, Predators: German-Soviet Relations, 1922-1941," in the speeches and writings file).
    His papers are arranged into nine series.
    The largest and most interesting series contains his speeches and writings, including holograph and typescript drafts of the books mentioned above.
    Also of interest is the material related to his work as editor of the Obozrenie Magazine from 1982 to 1986. The series contains a full run of the magazine, which gives a general picture of life in the Soviet Union (each issue was devoted to a specific aspect of Soviet society).
    The biographical file is noteworthy because it documents the difficulties Aleksandr Nekrich had in obtaining legal permanent residence in the United States, and helps us understand his personality, character, values, and beliefs. It also contains letters he wrote his family when serving of the Russian front during World War II, which complement his memoirs about the war found in Box 21 of the speeches and writings file.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the repository's online public access catalog.


    World War, 1939-1945--Soviet Union.
    World War, 1939-1945.
    Soviet Union--Foreign relations.
    Soviet Union--Historiography.
    Soviet Union.
    Russia (Federation)
    Soviet Union--History.