The Ambivalent Empire. Soviet Rule in the Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic, 1945-1964, PhD thesis, European University Institute, 2013

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The Ambivalent Empire. Soviet Rule in the Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic, 1945-1964, PhD thesis, European University Institute, 2013
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    The Ambivalent Empire Soviet Rule in the Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic, 1945–1964 Claus Bech Hansen    European University Institute Department of History and Civilization The Ambivalent Empire Soviet Rule in the Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic, 1945–1964 Claus Bech Hansen Thesis submitted for assessment with a view to   obtaining the degree of Doctor of History and Civilization of the European University Institute Examining Board Prof. Stephen Anthony Smith, EUI (Supervisor) Prof. Olivier Roy, EUI Prof. Jörg Baberowski, Humboldt University Dr. Galina Yemelianova, University of Birmingham   i Abstract  This thesis analyses the functioning of Soviet rule in the Uzbek Soviet Socialist Republic from 1945 to 1964. The thesis contributes to a growing body of literature on the late-Stalin and the Khrushchev periods and sheds light not only on the tremendous influence Soviet rule had on Uzbek society, but also on the changes and continuities that occurred between Soviet rule under Stalin and Khrushchev. It focuses on the effects of two fundamentally opposing forces that characterised Soviet rule in Uzbekistan: On the one hand, the Moscow leadership held a strong claim to power resulting in quasi-imperial practices to ensure the implementa-tion of central government interests in the Uzbek Soviet republic. On the other hand, even during the Stalinist dictatorship, the Uzbek periphery was subject to a continuous integration into the Soviet Union through central government investment in all spheres of the country in the name of communism.  Ambivalent Empire  is meant to capture the essence of a state that disregarded imperial power and invested enormous forces to that very end, but paradoxically flanked anti-imperial policy with quasi-imperial practices in its pursuit of communist mod-ernity. This ambivalence of Soviet rule was accompanied by the condition of limited statehood, which is used as an analytical analytical concept to provide a better understanding of the mechanisms that directed the centre-periphery relations in the Soviet Union. Instead of understanding limited statehood as a sign of weakness of the Soviet state or as opposition to the Soviet project on side of the Uzbeks, the thesis explores the meanings and strengths of limited statehood in the implementation processes. Far from being a one-sided expression of low efficacy of Soviet rule in the Uzbek SSR, limited statehood was produced by the com- plex interplay between different forces that made it dysfunctional and   functional to different actors at different times. As a consequence, the thesis provides a better understanding of the deeper functioning not only of the Soviet state but also of the forces holding it together.   ii Acknowledgements Many people have helped me in the process of writing this PhD thesis. First and foremost I must extend my deepest appreciation to my supervisor Steve Smith. His critical advice and intellectual curiosity have improved the project, and he gave me complete intellectual free-dom, while providing needed subtle guidance. For his generosity and patience I am eternally indebted. I also owe my sincerest gratitude to Jörg Baberowski. His work has kept inspiring me, his advice has forced me to think harder and he has always helped in times when I needed it most. I am very thankful. Klaus Kiran Patel, Elena Zubkova, Adrienne Edgar, Philipp Ther, Arfon Rees, Heinz-Gerhard Haupt and Michael Müller all provided wise and valuable suggestions at various stages of the project. In Moscow, I was lucky to receive advice and support from Andrei Doronin, Vladimir Denisov and Oleg Khlevniuk who all helped me making sense of the often kafkaesque struc-tures of the Moscow archives. And had it not been for Robert Kindler, Tobias Rupprecht, Andreas Oberender, Moritz Deutschmann and Botakoz Kassymbekova, I am not sure I would ever have found my way out. All of them I wish to thank for helpful conversations and sug-gestions. In Berlin, Matthias Braun got me organised at the Collaborate Research Centre 640 at the Humboldt University. I owe my gratitude to him and all the junior and senior research-ers affiliated to the research centre for providing me excellent working conditions. I must also extend my gratefulness to Ed Schatz, the REEEC and the participants of the Summer Lab 2010 for an interesting workshop in Champaign-Urbana and the subsequent research stay with the REEEC library collections. Lastly, the EUI staff always offered me invaluable help  but my special thanks goes Ruth Gbikpi, Serge Noiret, Kathy Wolf Fabiani, Francesca Pa-renti and Ken Hulley. Many friends have accompanied me throughout the duration of the project, indeed far too many to mention here. I am indebted to Christian Thauer and Fabian Thunemann for the many hours we spent discussing the sense or nonsense of a PhD thesis. Stephen Young proof-read the entire manuscript when time was running out and he himself had better things to do. Thank you, Steve, I owe you. Anders Herlitz has been an incredible support when no one else was there and I doubted my ideas and myself. Somehow he always manages to turn on the light at the end of the tunnel. My special thanks also belongs to Irene Hahn-Fuhr and David Fuhr. Their friendship is an invaluable gift, for which I am forever grateful. Daniel Gerster, Ina Wiesner, Carolin Moje, Jes Lind, Jens Andersson, Louise Bergström, David Horan, Niels   iii Gøthgen, Christoph Kamissek and Rasmus Øjvind   have all done their part in occasionally  providing much needed distraction from the thesis and I thank them for their continued friendship despite my frequent disappearance when work preoccupied me. Without the loving support of my brother, his family and my parents this project would never have been possible. I could not have written it without you and I fear I will never find the words to adequately express how much your help and encouragement has meant to me.
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