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Deconstructing the myth of the Tatar Yoke

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Analysing and comparing the various conventional and revisionist narratives on what is known as the 'Tatar Yoke', this article aims to show that Western historiography has long been critical of the dominant negative view on the Tatar-Mongol rule over Russian principalities and that in Russia we find similar revisions in history - with some exceptions - only in post-Soviet times. This article aims to demonstrate how the revisionist views on the Tatar-Mongol rule contributed to the political and cultural transformation of contemporary Russia. In the part which analyses the revisionist discourse in Russia the emphasis lies on the new Tatar narrative. For Tatars the new interpretation of the Tatar-Mongol rule is of outstanding importance because it functions as a means to enhance Tatar national pride, and it contributes to Tatarstan's sovereignty project.
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Keywords: 'Tatar Yoke'; East and West; Russian-Tatar relations; changing Tatar nationalism; reviving Tatar national pride

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: University of Hamburg, Lubeck, Germany

Publication date: March 1, 2008

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