Seeking Fortune in Orenburg and Fort Perovsky: Mikhail Pervukhin as Orientalist, Debtor, Imperial Official
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Seeking Fortune in Orenburg and Fort Perovsky: Mikhail Pervukhin as Orientalist, Debtor, Imperial Official
Annotation
PII
S207987840006046-9-1
DOI
10.18254/S207987840006046-9
Publication type
Article
Status
Published
Authors
Paolo Sartori 
Affiliation: Institute of Iranian Studies, Austrian Academy of Sciences
Address: Austria, Vienna
Pavel Shabley
Affiliation: Chelyabinsk State University (Kostanay Branch)
Address: Russian Federation, Chelyabinsk
Edition
Abstract

This article sheds light on the little-known biography of Mikhail Pervukhin. Born into a family of company officers of the Vyatka Governorate in 1813, Pervukhin first made himself a reputation as a gifted Arabist at the University of Kazan in the 1830s. Hunted by creditors, however, Pervukhin soon abandoned his academic career and left the Orientalist milieu of Kazan in 1840. After a stint as a clerk working for the forestry administration in the Yelabuga District, Pervukhin sought fortune in Central Asia: he moved to Orenburg and from there to Fort Perovsky. The Kazakh Steppe represented for him a second chance. Assigned to the Orenburg Border Commission, Pervukhin acquired prominence as a colonial official when he was tasked with the supervision of the Syr Darya Kazakhs in 1855. His new appointment, however, was soon followed by accusations of adventurism and corruption. Pervukhin left Fort Perovsky and after various peregrinations he shored up in Astrakhan where he served as a teacher of Tatar until his death in 1871. While following the routes of Pervukhin’s biography, we reflect on the challenges posed and the opportunities offered by the penetration of the Russian empire into Central Asia, and consider certain under-explored facets of Imperial policy.

Keywords
Orientalism, Orenburg Border Commission, frontier, Inner Horde, Syr Darya, Customary law, annual tent tax
Received
17.05.2019
Publication date
15.10.2019
Number of characters
28881
Number of purchasers
6
Views
67
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0.0 (0 votes)
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