In the end, a long sequence of pledges, breaches of contract, rebellions, and pledges again defines the status of Bashkirs in the Russian Empire by the early 18th century, primarily by exempting them from enserfment
and granting them hereditary landholding rights in return for tribute and occasional corvee service.
Pushkin also knew that enserfment
had been established by Boris and realized that support of the Pretender was effectively opposition to serfdom.
See also Hellie, R., Enserfment
and Military Change in Muscovy, Chicago 1971.
He illustrates the wide variety of responses colonial rule evoked (from enserfment
to withdrawal), and demonstrates the fluidity and multifariousness of Bushman economic stratagems and social reality, including marriage, residence patterns, and political structure.
"Russia," says Archer, "was associated above all with slavery of one sort or another by its European neighbors, even before the formal enserfment
of the Russian peasantry began in the early 1590s" (111).
Half of Levine's book treats modernization from the top down, that is, the feudal and military revolutions, which involve a revolution in land tenure and inheritance law and the enserfment
of agrarian workers, and the bureaucratization of government (the modernization theorists' "state formation") complete with literate and numerate record-keeping.
And in fact, Yanov comments: "On the same analogy, a historian who argued that Soviet Russia in the 1930s was indeed saturated with treason, that all the higher personnel of the country were conspiring against the state, and that the enserfment
of the peasantry in the course of collectivization and the attachment of the blue- and white-collar workers to their jobs was `historically necessary' to the survival of the state would be compelled to `justify morally' total terror and GULAG."(20)
Lastly, I am grateful to him for taking note of my criticism of the enserfment
of the eleventh century,(11) anal observe once again that the notion of "revolution" is weakened as a result.
The state, accumulating power from its enserfment
of the peasantry in 1649 and especially from the policies of Peter the Great, threatened to destroy Russia's indigenous institutions, to wit, the commune, which had maintained social control without the necessity of a contract for centuries.
When Tucker comes to the question of how it was that Stalin was able to resurrect the political culture of Ivan the Terrible, including a new enserfment
of the peasantry, the binding of all social classes to the state and the dreaded oprichnina, or political police, he resorts to a very confusing explanatory device: Stalin-whose fascination with the Russian past was revealed in Tucker's first volume-drew from accounts of the reigns of Ivan the Terrible and Peter the Great a statist plan for remaking a backward society in a hostile international environment.
In fact, the enserfment
of the peasantry was a relatively late development in Russia, emerging in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries in response to territorial expansion coupled with a severe shortage of agricultural labor." (6)
(32) Richard Hellie, Enserfment
and Military Change in Muscovy (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1971).