Ural Federal University: The Canadian Association of Slavic Studies Honored James White’s Article as the Best

A publication by James White, a senior researcher at Ural Federal University’s Laboratory of Primary Sources Research, has been recognized as the best publication of 2020. The article “Russian Orthodox Monasticism in the Diocese of Riga, 1881-1917” was published in Canadian Slavonic Papers and won a prize from the Canadian Association of Slavic Studies. The competition is held annually by one of the oldest and most respected international associations of Slavists in cooperation with Taylor & Francis Publishers. The competition included articles by researchers from around the world published in the journal in the past year.

“I am honored to announce that the Canadian Association of Slavists has awarded me the Article of the Year 2020 Award for my research on Russian Orthodox monasticism in the Archdiocese of Riga. I express my gratitude to the editors of the Canadian Slavonic Papers, who were very helpful in the publication process,” James White wrote on social media.

The publication focuses on the role of monasteries of the Riga diocese in the confessional and national policy of the Russian Empire in the Baltics. The international jury’s decision noted that the article presents a brilliant analysis of the ways in which religious, social, and government circles pooled resources to make the regional diocese a prominent center of Orthodoxy.

“In an erudite and engaging essay, James White reconstructs the social and religious histories of three Russian Orthodox nunneries and one Russian Orthodox monastery that were established in the Diocese of Riga in the late imperial period. He masterfully describes the ways in which non-local and local religious, civic, and government leaders pooled resources and established Orthodox religious networks throughout the empire and abroad to turn a backwater diocese into a prominent Russian Orthodox place that began to successfully compete with the institutions of Lithuanian-German Lutheranism and German civilization before World War I. The article makes an important contribution to the history of religion, regional events, empire building and Russification in the imperial kingdom, as well as to world Orthodoxy,” explained the organizers of the award.

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