Russian Bible Wars: Modern Scriptural Translation and Cultural Authority

Russian Bible Wars: Modern Scriptural Translation and Cultural Authority

By: Stephen K. Batalden (author)Hardback

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Although biblical texts were known in Church Slavonic as early as the ninth century, translation of the Bible into Russian came about only in the nineteenth century. Modern scriptural translation generated major religious and cultural conflict within the Russian Orthodox church. The resulting divisions left church authority particularly vulnerable to political pressures exerted upon it in the twentieth century. Russian Bible Wars illuminates the fundamental issues of authority that have divided modern Russian religious culture. Set within the theoretical debate over secularization, the volume clarifies why the Russian Bible was issued relatively late and amidst great controversy. Stephen Batalden's study traces the development of biblical translation into Russian and of the 'Bible wars' that then occurred in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries in Russia. The annotated bibliography of the Russian Bible identifies the different editions and their publication history.

About Author

Stephen K. Batalden is Professor of History and Director of the Melikian Center for Russian, Eurasian and East European Studies at Arizona State University.


Introduction; 1. Origins of the Russian Bible Society; 2. Technology and textology; 3. Foreign and clandestine publishing in Nikolaevan Russia; 4. The Synodal Bible; 5. Russian Biblical translation and the Jewish Question; 6. Colportage, Sectarianism and Russian Bible publication; Afterword: Russian Biblical translations in the twentieth century; Appendix: annotated bibliography of the Russian Bible, 1794-1991; Bibliography; Index.

Product Details

  • ISBN13: 9781107032118
  • Format: Hardback
  • Number Of Pages: 395
  • ID: 9781107032118
  • weight: 700
  • ISBN10: 1107032113

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