In This Review

Broad Is My Native Land: Repertoires and Regimes of Migration in Russia’s Twentieth Century
Broad Is My Native Land: Repertoires and Regimes of Migration in Russia’s Twentieth Century
By Lewis H. Siegelbaum and Leslie Page Moch
Cornell University Press, 2014, 440 pp

The internal movement of peoples shapes the fabric of nearly every country. In Russia’s case, the most familiar images of migration involve Siberian exile, Stalin’s gulag, and savage forced resettlements. Siegelbaum and Moch argue that, in reality, throughout three distinct periods in Russian history—the late imperial era, the Soviet years, and today—the phenomenon has been far more complex. During the twentieth century, most of the people who moved about the vast Russian territory—settlers, “career migrants,” evacuees, military recruits, and deportees—did so at the state’s behest. But many others, such as seasonal workers, refugees, and itinerant laborers, often migrated for their own, often compelling reasons. Whether people were coerced into moving or did so voluntarily, they developed distinctive ways of dealing with displacement. The authors address what all this movement meant to these different groups and to society at large, offering insights into a little-understood aspect of Russian history.