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This book talk traces the evolution of tsarist policies toward the Armenian diaspora that populated Russia’s territorial fringes and navigated the empire’s metropolitan centers. Analyzing the complexities of this imperial relationship—beyond the reductive question of whether Russia was a friend or foe to Armenians—allows us to study the methods of tsarist imperialism in the contexts of diasporic distribution, interimperial conflict and alliance, nationalism, and religious and economic identity.

Dr. Stephen B. Riegg is an assistant professor of history at Texas A&M University. He received his Ph.D. in Modern Russian History from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. His research into the political history of modern Russian imperialism revolves around questions of the empire’s practical functionality in the South Caucasus. His book, Russia’s Entangled Embrace: The Tsarist Empire and the Armenians, 1801-1914, won the Best Book Award from Ab Imperio and the Aronian Book Prize for Excellence in Armenian Studies. He has conducted archival fieldwork in the depositories of St. Petersburg, Moscow, Tbilisi, and Yerevan.

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