“What benefit does Russia derive from this Institute?” Tsar Nicholas II on the Psycho-Neurological Institute

 

A most interesting article has been posted on line and brought to my attention by its author:

“What benefit does Russia derive from this Institute?” Tsar Nicholas II on the Psycho-Neurological Institute: The last Emperor of Russia and Vladimir Bekhterev’s Psycho-Neurological Institute revolutionaries

by Federico Soldani

29th Oct 2021

https://psypolitics.org/2021/10/29/what-benefit-does-russia-derive-from-this-institute-tsar-nicholas-ii-on-the-psycho-neurological-institute-2021/

 

Sorokin was a student at the Psycho-Neurological Institute.

As Soldani notes: “The Institute offered medical training of the highest order, but its students’ revolutionary tendencies were becoming a concern for the government. In 1912, the mayor of Saint Petersburg had reported on political activity among the capital’s students. In margin of the section on the Psycho-Neurological Institute, Tsar Nicholas II had written, “What benefit does Russia derive from this Institute? I wish to have a well-founded answer”. In the spring of 1914 the minister of public education presented an additional report on the anti-governmental attitudes of Bekhterev’s students and recommended the Institute’s closure.”

the Sorokins and Russian War Relief

 

‘Town Rallies Behind War Relief’ – Winchester Chronicle

 

75 years ago: Town rallies behind Russian War Relief

By Ellen Knight

The Daily Times Chronicle (Winchester, MA)

June 13, 2017

http://homenewshere.com/daily_times_chronicle/news/winchester/article_38566ea6-5046-11e7-ada0-6fa227eccafc.html

 

 

Russian benefit – Boston Globe 12-15-1941

 

– posted by Roger W. Smith

     September 2021

“Even more absurd was a request from P. A. Sorokin.”

 

“There were other interesting ways in which intensity of feeling showed itself in irrational ways, showing how human good scholars can be.

“During my editorship of the ASR [American Sociological Review] the president of SSSP [The Society for the Study of Social Problems] sent in a proposed constitution for that organization, requesting that it be published in the ASR. Since the Review never had a policy of printing constitutions of other societies (or even that of the ASA!), the paper was returned. My reward was a denunciation in a Council meeting and a further drubbing in a letter to the president of ASA, with copies to various other leading sociologists.

“Even more absurd was a request from P.A. Sorokin, who demanded that I publish a statement accusing Talcott Parsons of plagiarism from Sorokin’s works. This was not the product of a reasonable mind; his principal argument was that Parsons had based a theory on the three elements of society, culture, and personality–an idea that was clearly in the public domain. On receiving a rejection, Sorokin responded with an angry letter, threatening to publish the statement elsewhere and to add that it had been refused by me, Editor of ASR. I terminated the correspondence by writing that if he did, he should add that the Editor had submitted the statement to every associate editor and that each one had recommended against printing it. I never learned if he attempted to publish it elsewhere.”

— “Recollections of a Half Century of Life in the ASA,” By Robert E. L. Faris, The American Sociologist, Vol. 16, No. 1 (February , 1981), pp. 51-52

— posted by Roger W. Smith

      August 2021

an interview with Don Martindale

 

Martindale and Mohan, ‘An Interview with Don Martindale’ – International Social Science Review’

Posted here as a PDF file:

Perspectives of a Contemporary Critical Realist: An Interview with Don Martindale

By Don Martindale and Raj P. Mohan

International Social Science Review

Vol. 58, No. 3 (summer 1983), pp. 142-154

Don Martindale was a professor of sociology at the University of Minnesota. Raj P. Mohan was a professor of sociology at Auburn University.

Martindale makes personal observations about and comparisons between sociologists such as Sorokin, Talcott Parsons, Robert Merton, and C. Wright Mills which some scholars may find interesting.

 

— posted by Roger W. Smith

     August 2021

Russell Middleton: from his “History of Sociology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison”

 

Middleton excerpts

 

Posted here as a Word document are fascinating excerpts pertaining to Sorokin from History of Sociology at the University of Wisconsin-Madison; Volume 1: Challenges, Ups, and Downs, 1874-2016 by Russell Middleton (Madison, Wisconsin: Anthropocene Press, 2001).

 

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email from Russell Middleton to Roger W. Smith

August 22, 2018

 

Dear Mr. Smith:

I am happy to give you my permission to cite and quote from my discussion of the relationship between E. A. Ross and Pitirim Sorokin. Ross strongly disagreed with Sorokin’s view of the Soviet leaders, but he was taken in by Soviet propaganda. Nevertheless, he had great respect for Sorokin as a scholar and played a major role in helping him land a job at the University of Minnesota and later as chair of the Sociology Dept. at Harvard.

When I was a graduate student at Minnesota in 1951 there was a joke circulating among the sociology graduate students that Sorokin had read every book in the library. I almost came to believe it when I was looking for some good French sociology texts to use in practice for my French reading exam (which was required for the PhD then). In the stacks I pulled down some very old issues of L’année Sociologique, the famous French journal of Durkheim, Mauss, etc. I was startled to see that Sorokin was the last (and only) person who had checked out the volume in all the years since Sorokin had taught there.

When I run across people who argue that Lenin was a decent leader, in contrast with Stalin, I tell them to go read Sorokin’s autobiography.

Best wishes,
Russell Middleton
Prof. Emeritus of Sociology
University of Wisconsin-Madison

 

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I wish to thank Professor Middleton for giving me permission to post these excepts from his book.

 

— posted by Roger W. Smith

     August 2021

Mrs. Sorokine on Way to This Country Now

 

 

 

Posted here:

“Mrs. Pitirim Sorokine on Way to This Country Now”

Decatur Herald (Decatur, Illinois)

March 23, 1924

pg. 17

 

 

– posted by Roger W. Smith

     August 2021

Please note repost: Henry Noble MacCracken, “Russia of To-day”

 

I have reposted

at

Henry Noble MacCracken, “Russia of To-day”

 

“Russia of To-day”

by Henry Noble MacCracken

review of

современное состояние России (sovremennoye sostoyaniye Rossii; The

Present State of Russia)

By Pitirim Sorokin

Prague, 1922

 

I had previously posted the wrong document; and the full text of this very illuminating and hard to find article was not available.

Henry Noble MacCracken was the President of Vassar College.

 

— Roger W. Smith

Sorokin “is out” (was, here; twenty years ago)

 

Gehard Falk, ‘Tenure allows hest professors to succeed’ – Buffalo News 2-12-1999

 

Gerhard Falk

Tenure allows best professors to succeed without resentment   (editorial)

The Buffalo News

February 12, 1999

pg. B2

 

Academic tenure permits a professor or teacher to hold his job until retirement or for life. This arrangement has come under considerable criticism in recent months on the grounds that it tends to protect incompetent faculty from losing their jobs.

While this criticism is sometimes valid, it overlooks that tenure protects the best and most productive faculty from resentment against achievement. …

[T]he best work done in any university or college is done by tenured, full professors who are free to publish, teach and produce without worrying about the committee professionals and other self-appointed elitists who dominate almost every campus. Today, almost the entire academic establishment is dominated by those who demand conformity at any price. In fact, rigid conformity and puritanical thinking are the principal characteristics of the academic world, so that there is hardly any room for individualism anywhere in our institutions of higher learning. Those who express views not to the liking of campus politicians are either deprived of their jobs, denied promotions or excluded from faculty activities.

Aa a result, large numbers of faculty no longer attend any meetings, refuse to serve on committees for fear teaching [sic] subject matter not “politically correct.” That phrase refers to the belief that some thoughts should not be expressed, some ideas not exhibited, some books not written and some forms of expression not spoken. “Political correctness” is just one form of tyranny among the many that have plagued mankind. It is, however, most egregious that the academy is now “goose stepping” to the campus “thought police.”

For example, it is currently almost impossible for a graduate student in psychology to follow teachings of Sigmund Freud. Freud is “politically incorrect.” Similarly, a graduate student in sociology would not dare express an interest in the work of Pitirim Sorokin. He, too, is out. …

 

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Of course, while Sorokin may not have hated Freud personally, he had no use for Freud’s theories.

 

— posted by Roger W. Smith

     March 2021

a notice of Sorokin’s first book

 

The Zyranians are a Finnish people in the north of European Russia who are gradually coming under the influence of Russian culture but still retain to a considerable extent their language and their ancient beliefs and customs. A young Zyranian student, Pitirim Sorokin, who has not yet completed his university course, has just published in Saint Petersburg a thick volume of 456 pages under the title of “Crime and Penalty, Virtue and Reward. A sociological study of the fundamental forms of social conduct and morals.” Professor Maxim Kovalevsky contributes a preface to the book, and it is perhaps less remarkable that a Zyranian at the age of twenty-four years should publish a book of such a size on a subject than that he should find reviewers, on the whole, inclined to be laudatory.

— “Notes on Current Books,” The Russian Review, Volume III, No. 1 (February 1914), pg. 224

posted by Roger W. Smith

   June 2020

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correction:

In a post at

http://rksorokinctr.org/index.php/component/content/article/9-2011-06-23-08-52-45/128-2015-02-20-13-45-45.html

Marina Lomonosova notes that the earliest known works of Sorokin were believed to date back to 1910. As a result of her analysis of bibliographic material, Professor Lomonosova discovered an earlier article by Sorokin: «Кое-что о современной художественной литературе» (Something about Contemporary Fiction), published by him in 1907 in the magazine «Искры» (Sparks).

“one dollar a month”

 

See above-mentioned report of Lounatcharsky depicting the terrible condition of teachers and schools. Here are a few official statements. “The situation of the village schools is most dreadful. There is no kerosene, no light, no newspapers, no books. The schools are empty. No teachers. Cultural activity has died.” Isvestia, November 17, 1922. “I could torture you with terrible descriptions,” said Lounatcharsky himself : “among the teachers there are dreadful conditions, beggarliness and pauperism, awful mortality and disease, suicide and prostitution. The teachers have only twelve per cent. of the minimum income necessary to live” (about one dollar a month). Isvestia, No. 293, 1922. “Economic situation of the students is very bad,” said Bukharin in his report to the last Conference of the Russian Communistic Party in May of 1924: “The picture is terrible, the students are starving and could be called as the beggar-students, who do not have any shelter or room or income and how they are living nobody knows.” Isvestia, May 31, 1924. “According to the appearance of the present students you can not say who are before you: whether a student or hobo or beggar. Their clothes are nothing but rags. Their faces are emaciated and pale. Such poverty and starvation influence the health of the students very much. You can scarcely find a student without catarrh of the stomach. Such life favours to the terrible increase of tuberculosis and typhus. Greater part of the students have had them. Anemia, malaria and eye-sight illnesses are quite usual phenomena among them. After three years of such a life the state will receive only the invalids good for nothing who are the burden for the country and for themselves.” Such is the characteristic of the students given by [Martin Ivanovich] Latzis–one of the cruellest red terrorists in Pravda, June 4, 1924. See also Isvestia, No. 260, 1922. Iakovleff: The Village As It Is, 1923, and other Bolshevist publications in which they state their complete failure and complete disorganization of the instruction and education in Russia. The description of the University­-life see in my Leaves from a Russian Diary.

— Pitirim A Sorokin, The Sociology of Revolution (J. B. Lippincott Company, 1925), footnote, pg. 345

— posted by Roger W. Smith

     May 2020

 

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See also my post:

“Darkness, Despair, Death Grip Russian Educators” (Sorokin on Russian universities, post-Revolution)

“Darkness, Despair, Death Grip Russian Educators” (Sorokin on Russian universities, post-Revolution)