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Bitter Choices
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Bitter Choices: Loyalty and Betrayal in the Russian Conquest of the North Caucasus

Michael Khodarkovsky


Russia's attempt to consolidate its authority in the North Caucasus has exerted a terrible price on both sides since the mid-nineteenth century. This book tells a concise and compelling history of the mountainous region between the Black and Caspian seas during the centuries of Russia's long conquest (1500–1850s). The history of the region unfolds against the background of one man's life story, Semën Atarshchikov (1807–1845). Torn between his Chechen identity and his duties as a lieutenant and translator in the Russian army, Atarshchikov defected, not once but twice, to join the mountaineers a ... More

Keywords: Russia, North Caucasus, Semën Atarshchikov, Chechen identity, Russian army, empire building

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2011 Print ISBN-13: 9780801449727
Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016 DOI:10.7591/cornell/9780801449727.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Michael Khodarkovsky, author
Loyola University Chicago