Location: Bowdoin / K. Page Herrlinger


Page Herrlinger

Associate Professor of History

On leave for fall 2018 semester

Contact Information


Hubbard Hall - 23

Page Herrlinger - Bowdoin College History

Teaching Interests

18th-20th Century Russia and the Soviet Union; socialist culture; 19-20th Century Germany; First World War; Second World War; women in modern Europe; visual culture

18th-20th Century Russia and the Soviet Union; socialist culture; 19-20th Century Germany; First World War; Second World War; women in modern Europe; visual culture

atteaMy research focuses on the intersection between religious belief and everyday life in the experience of ordinary Russian people during 19th and 20th centuries, including the so-called “godless” Soviet period. I am interested in the diverse and evolving ways that individuals understood the role of God and faith in their lives, selves and communities – both what they valued as sacred, and how their beliefs gave them a framework for acting, understanding change, and structuring society. These questions are relevant to Russia’s past as well as its present, as Russians today debate the role that the Orthodox Church should play in modern society and politics, and the relationship between Orthodoxy and “Russianness.”

At the center of my current book project, “Defying Orthodoxy,” is the collective experience of the tens of thousands of devout Russian Orthodox believers who, over the course of the last century, have challenged dominant norms of faith, authority and identity in order to proclaim their personal salvation through the teachings and prayers of a charismatic lay preacher known as “Brother Ioann” Churikov (1861-1933).

Working SoulsMy first book, Working Souls: Russian Orthodoxy and Factory Labor in St. Petersburg, 1880-1917 (Bloomington, Indiana: Slavica Publishers, 2007), addressed questions of religious (and irreligious) identity among workers in Russia’s most revolutionary and modern city, St. Petersburg/Petrograd. While documenting the remarkable vitality and diversity of urban religious life at the end of the Imperial era, it explores the various ways in which the components of workers’ religious identity – their practices, sensibilities, and beliefs about God, self and society – were transformed by the experience of modern factory life. It also considers the extent to which the evolving spiritual needs and demands of the working class laity precipitated changes in Russian Orthodoxy and the role of the Church in modern society.

“Zhizn’ v Kommune BICh v 20 godakh” (“Life on the Churikov Commune in the 1920s”), forthcoming in Russian in a conference volume, "Dvizhenie 'narodnykh trezvennikov'" (St. Petersburg).

"The Pious Women of an 'Unsimple Folk': Female Perspectives on Faith and Authority Among the Orthodox Laity of St. Petersburg, 1895-1917," Church and Society in Modern Russia: Essays in Honor of Gregory L. Freeze eds. Manfred Hildemeier and Elise Kimerling Wirtschafter (Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz Verlag, 2015), 113-132.

"Orthodoxy and the Politics of Emotion in the Case of 'Brother Ioann' Churikov and His Followers, 1910-1914," in Orthodox Parodoxes: Heterogeneities and Complexities in Contemporary Russian Orthodoxy (Brill, 2015).

“Worker Cultures in Revolutionary Russia, 1914-1922,” in Russia’s Great War and Revolution, 1914-1922. The Century Reappraisal (Slavica, 2014).

 “Petitions to Brother Ioann Churikov,” in Orthodox Christianity in Imperial Russia:  A Sourcebook on Lived Religion, ed. Heather Coleman (Indiana University Press, 2015).

 “Villain or Victim? The Faith-Based Sobriety of the Factory Worker Peter Terekhovich in Soviet Russia, 1925-29.” Europe-Asia Studies, Vol. 65, no. 9 (November 2013): 1737-54

“Trials of the Unorthodox Orthodox: The Followers of Brother Ioann Churikov and Their Critics in Modern Russia, 1894-1914,” Russian History 40 (2013): 244-63.

“The Religious Landscape in Revolutionary St. Petersburg, 1900-1917.” Journal of Urban History 37:6 (November 2011): 842-857.

«Из истории неортодоксального православия: «преступления» братца Иоанна Чурикова и его последователей в России в 1905-1914 гг.» [“A Case of Unorthodox Orthodoxy: The ‘Religious Crimes” of Brother Ioann Churikov and his Followers in Modern Russia, 1905-1914.”] in “Vina i Pozor v kontekse traditsionnoi kul’tury,” eds. Marianna Muraveyva and Natalia Pushkareva (St. Petersburg:  European University Press, 2011).

“Raising Lazarus: Orthodoxy and the Factory Narod in St. Petersburg, 1905-1914,” Jahrbucher fur Geschichte Osteuropas, vol. 52, no. 3 (2004).

“Orthodoxy and the Experience of Factory Life in St. Petersburg, 1881-1905,” in New Labor History: Worker Identity and Experience in Russia, 1840-1918, ed. by Michael Melancon and Alice Pate (Slavica, 2002).