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Archimandrite Mikhail (Semenov) and Russian christian socialism

Dixon, SM; (2008) Archimandrite Mikhail (Semenov) and Russian christian socialism. Historical Journal , 51 (3) 689 - 717. 10.1017/S0018246X08006973. Green open access

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Abstract

Sex, populism, and the search for universal religious freedom were the overwhelming preoccupations of Russia's Silver Age, and no churchman did more to engage with them than Archimandrite Mikhail (Semenov). Having spearheaded the Russian Orthodox church's mission to the intelligentsia in the years before 1905, he fell from grace when Russian social Christianity was irrevocably politicized by revolution. Sacked from his chair at the St Petersburg theological academy when he declared himself a Christian socialist, he was unfrocked for converting to the Old Belief, and imprisoned for fomenting sedition. Yet even as he lurched from the established church, via the schism, to a revolutionary form of Golgothan Christianity, obsessed with suffering, Mikhail never abandoned his burning desire to build the kingdom of heaven on earth. His career, which has so far escaped detailed historical investigation, encapsulates most of the ecclesiastical tensions of his time, and reveals in particularly acute form the difficulties experienced by the Russian church when it attempted to respond to modernist intellectuals and to popular spiritual need.

Type: Article
Title: Archimandrite Mikhail (Semenov) and Russian christian socialism
Location: UK
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1017/S0018246X08006973
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1017/S0018246X08006973
Language: English
Additional information: © 2008 Cambridge University Press
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > SSEES
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1363091
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