Navigation – Plan du site
282
Diljara Usmanova

Musul’manskaja frakcija i problemy “svobody sovesti” v Gosudarstvennoj Dume Rossii (1906‑1917). Kazan, Izdatel’stvo “Master Lajn”, 1999, 163 p., 6 tab., ill., bibliography. [The Muslim Fraction and the Questions of “Freedom of Conscience” in the State Duma of Russia (1906-1917)]

Compte-rendu réalisé par Allen J. Frank

Texte intégral

1Diljara Usmanova’s monograph has taken on two tasks. The first is a general examination of the activities of Muslim deputies and their « Muslim Bloc » in the imperial Russia’s four parliamentary assemblies (Dumas), which were convened from 1906 until the overthrow of tsarism in 1917. The second task is to examine the more specific issue of « freedom of conscience », or religious liberty as it was addressed by the Muslim deputies, and discussed in the Duma at large. The A. admirably succeeds in both tasks, and in so doing provides an informative and clear-eyed appraisal of the role of Muslim deputies in Russia’s first parliament. The A. bases her studies both on the published proceedings of the Dumas, as well as the Muslim press of that era, which paid close attention to its community’s deputies.

2In the main narrative regarding the Muslim deputies, the A. portrays a very heterogeneous group, whose numbers and diversity shrank as the tsar successively dissolved the Dumas, and restricted the franchise. In Usmanova’s view, while the Muslim deputies obviously enjoyed a degree of unity on the basis of a common faith and a shared experience as a religious and ethnic minorities within Russia, differences among Muslim deputies hindered their overall effectiveness as parliamentarians. The differences that influenced their effectiveness were not so much ethnic, regional, or even partisan divisions, but rather differences in education and training as parliamentarians. Specifically, some Muslim deputies came to the Duma as lawyers, conversant with Russian law, fluent in the Russian language, and familiar with the parliamentary experiences of other countries. These deputies were able to work very effectively on the various committees and in the Duma chamber. Other Muslim deputies came to the Duma from rural communities. Their ignorance of the Russian language, and of parliamentary procedure as a whole vitiated their effectiveness, and weakened the Muslim Bloc as a whole. Furthermore, while other ethnic blocs, such as the Polish Kolo, maintained clear enough goals, the Muslim bloc, representing a much more diverse group, was unable to articulate, let alone implement, any specific « Muslim » program.

3The A. sees the Muslim Bloc’s chief legacy to have been in the area of drafting legislation advancing freedom of religion in the Russian Empire. While internal disorganization, and the dissolution of the first three Dumas hindered the implementation of these laws, the A. identifies freedom of religion, and defending the rights of religious minorities within the empire as a major concern of the Muslim deputies.

Haut de page

Pour citer cet article

Référence électronique

Allen J. Frank. Diljara Usmanova, « Musul’manskaja frakcija i problemy “svobody sovesti” v Gosudarstvennoj Dume Rossii (1906‑1917). Kazan, Izdatel’stvo “Master Lajn”, 1999, 163 p., 6 tab., ill., bibliography. [The Muslim Fraction and the Questions of “Freedom of Conscience” in the State Duma of Russia (1906-1917)] », Abstracta Iranica [En ligne], Volume 22 | 2001, document 282, mis en ligne le 15 février 2010, consulté le 26 avril 2019. URL : http://journals.openedition.org/abstractairanica/36666

Haut de page

Droits d’auteur

Tous droits réservés

Haut de page