Sowjetische Historiographie, Marxismus und Totalitarismus

Zur Analyse der mentalen Grundlagen der Historiographie


  • Nikolaj E. Koposov Pedagogical Institute of Leningrad



This article starts from the thesis that every „historiosophic system" is based on a certain set of features of a mentalite, on an ensemble of preconscious collective ideas about history and society. Thus, the philosophy of history of Marx and Engels has tobe conceived as a specific amalgam of the „traditional humanism" inherited from European Enlightenment and of a „revolutionary complex" resulting from a radicalization of the socio-economic contradictions during the 19th century in Western Europe, parallel to the economic and social developments in the 20th century, ,,traditional humanism" was succeeded by a „modern type humanism" - the former being characterized by a belief in the rationality of human nature, in progress and in the possibility of a planned realization of an ideal social order, the latter being based on a more individualistic and complex but also more pessimistic perception of the individual and the society. This has led to an increased distance of Western European intellectuals from Marxist philosophy ofhistory. In contrast to this, in post-revolutionary USSR the mentalite underlying Marxism was preserved and made to serve as an instrument for legitimizing the existing political system. This is the background of Koposov's analysis of the main methodological and thematic trends in Soviet historiography and its relation to the regime up to the present.





Koposov, N. E. (1991). Sowjetische Historiographie, Marxismus und Totalitarismus: Zur Analyse der mentalen Grundlagen der Historiographie. Österreichische Zeitschrift für Geschichtswissenschaften, 2(1), 41–66.