The Kremlin's support of the Slavophil interpretation of the past has been dominant since the late 1920s and early 1930s, when Russian nationalism reasserted itself as an official ideology in the form of "National Bolshevism.
Russian Slavophils regarded the spread of Christianity among its Muslim subjects as a civilizational process, and here they were not much different from the Victorian-era British.
Some of Russian pre-revolutionary Slavophils biologicalized, in way, Russian national characteristics.
Representatives of the Slavophil
trend in historical scholarship highly praised the value of the Zemsky Sobors, associating their appearance with the development of the old Russian Veche traditions and representing, therefore, Sobors as an organic and unique phenomenon, inherent only to the political development of Russia.
Stasov was an ardent Slavophil
, so it is not surprising that the young Findeizen should become a staunch supporter of the Russian Nationalist School; indeed he devoted the rest of his life to the study of Russian culture, his publications comprising several hundred books and articles, mostly written in Russian but sometimes in German as well.
Tolz is able to incorporate effectively critical topics in Russian history, such as the Decembrist revolt, the Slavophil
and Westernizer movements, the populists, and the manner that each group influenced and defined Russian-ness without losing a fluid and clear writing style.
An appointment to the Baltic littoral in the 1840s yielded Letters from Riga, a critique of Germans that kept his name prominent in Slavophil circles but also landed him in jail briefly.
More than any other Slavophil, Samarin collected empirical information about the historical evolution of the peasant commune, expertise upon which he relied as a participant in the Editing Commission, which decided the terms of emancipation.
But if Slavophils argued that they wanted to stop Petersburg from replicating the London of Charles Dickens' novels, as members of the wealthy, land-owning gentry, it should also be noted that their philosophy preserved their privileged status.
Fundamentally antistatist, the Slavophils managed to hold their own comparatively well against the censors because Nicholas I himself worried about what industrialization might portend for Russia.