Chayanov A. V. Organization of agricultural production at the local level (Article of A.V. Chayanov in English) // The Russian Peasant Studies. 2022. V.7. №3. P. 21-34.

DOI: 10.22394/2500-1809-2022-7-3-21-34

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  • About the authors

This typescript was found in the fund of the Soviet party economist Lev Natanovich Kritzman (F. 528) in the Archive of the Russian Academy of Sciences (ARAS), and has never been published before. The typescript consists of 16 sheets without an autograph or any handwritten corrections and marks. The typescript does not have any direct indications of the time of its creation. There are two more documents: a letter to Kritsman of December 26, 1929, and a fragment of the text written by Chayanov’s hand, which is very close to this typescript and seems to be one of its drafts. On the back of this sheet, there is an inscription — “2nd House of Soviets. Room 327. To L. N. Kritzman from A. Chayanov”.
The typescript presents the concept of the gradual ‘rooting’ of the peasant economy in socialism through the voluntary ‘cooperative collectivization’ and with the incentive mechanisms of a purely economic nature. We can see similar theoretical bases in Lenin’s ‘cooperative plan’ and Bukharin’s theory of the peaceful ingrowth of capitalist elements into socialism. In these ideological-theoretical alternatives to Stalin’s collectivization, the peasant was considered a full-fledged subject of the economic activity and socialist construction, who needed all possible assistance with the state policy measures rather than commands.
Chayanov refused to choose between the state-farm construction and the total socialization of the peasant agricultural sector. He developed an alternative program of socialist construction, which included the thorough revision of his own positions on some issues. Based on the data, Chayanov sought to show how far the Soviet village had moved from the pinnacle of the pre-war economic development, and that the Soviet peasantry had ceased to be ‘an object of the agronomic influence’. Thus, according to Chayanov, in contemporary realities, old methods and schemes of agronomic work became ineffective.
Archivists dated the documents in the file to 1930. We do not know reasons for such dating, but it raises some doubts. We can be certain about relative dating and the lower chronological frame — 1927. According to the address-reference book All Moscow, Kritzman moved to Room 327 of the 2nd House of Soviets in 1927 (All Moscow (1927) Address-Reference Book for 1927: 3rd year of publication by the Moscow Council; with the new plan for the city of Moscow, Moscow, p. 147).
There are more doubts about the upper chronological frame. If all these documents are really related to each other, the text should be dated according to the letter to Kritzman. Chayanov wrote that he had not finished an agronomic essay (in collaboration with P. Ya. Gurov and S.G. Uzhansky), because he was terribly upset by the first days of work of the First All-Union Conference of Marxist Agrarians. Moreover, Chayanov “did not get Sadyrin’s article, which made him throw away the whole ‘reality’ and end his ‘cooperation’ in the same purely theoretical terms as he had started” (ARAS. F. 528. Inv. 5. F. 137. L. 1). Chayanov could mean his articles for the Great Soviet Encyclopedia, in which Kritzman edited the section of economic sciences and the subsection of economic policy until 1931; or for one of the periodicals, in which Kritzman was a member of the editorial board (for instance, On the Agrarian Front). Chayanov could use the word ‘cooperation’ as a title for the typescript sent to Kritzman for proofreading and editing.
By the end of 1929, Chayanov was in an extremely difficult situation, and it became even worse after the First All-Union Conference of Marxist Agrarians, at which Chayanov and his colleagues were ideologically persecuted. Probably, after Stalin’s speech, Kritzman decided to postpone or abandon this publication. There is no article by Chayanov in the Great Soviet Encyclopedia, and no articles by Gurov or Uzhansky in the corresponding volumes; and this typescript was not published.
If our reasoning is correct, Chayanov’s courage can hardly be overestimated: under the huge ideological and psychological pressure, he decided to publicly announce his disagreement with Stalin’s course.
Editor’s notes are marked as Ed. and given in square brackets.

Chayanov, collectivization, peasantry, state, social agronomy, socialism.

Chayanov Alexander V.
Afanasenkov Vladislav O. (publisher), Senior Researcher, Moscow School of Social and Economic Sciences; Junior Researcher, Research Centre for Economic and Social History, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration. Vernadskogo Prosp., 82, Moscow, 119571, Russia.
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Trotsuk Irina V. (translator), DSc (Sociology), Professor, Sociology Chair, RUDN University; Senior Researcher, Center for Agrarian Studies, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration. 119571, Moscow, Vernadskogo Prosp, 82.
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Chayanov A. V. Organization of agricultural production at the local level (Article of A.V. Chayanov in Russian) // The Russian Peasant Studies. 2022. V.7. №3. P. 6-20.

DOI: 10.22394/2500-1809-2022-7-3-6-20

  • Annotation

  • Keywords

  • About the authors

This typescript was found in the fund of the Soviet party economist Lev Natanovich Kritzman (F. 528) in the Archive of the Russian Academy of Sciences (ARAS), and has never been published before. The typescript consists of 16 sheets without an autograph or any handwritten corrections and marks. The typescript does not have any direct indications of the time of its creation. There are two more documents: a letter to Kritsman of December 26, 1929, and a fragment of the text written by Chayanov’s hand, which is very close to this typescript and seems to be one of its drafts. On the back of this sheet, there is an inscription — “2nd House of Soviets. Room 327. To L. N. Kritzman from A. Chayanov”.
The typescript presents the concept of the gradual ‘rooting’ of the peasant economy in socialism through the voluntary ‘cooperative collectivization’ and with the incentive mechanisms of a purely economic nature. We can see similar theoretical bases in Lenin’s ‘cooperative plan’ and Bukharin’s theory of the peaceful ingrowth of capitalist elements into socialism. In these ideological-theoretical alternatives to Stalin’s collectivization, the peasant was considered a full-fledged subject of the economic activity and socialist construction, who needed all possible assistance with the state policy measures rather than commands.
Chayanov refused to choose between the state-farm construction and the total socialization of the peasant agricultural sector. He developed an alternative program of socialist construction, which included the thorough revision of his own positions on some issues. Based on the data, Chayanov sought to show how far the Soviet village had moved from the pinnacle of the pre-war economic development, and that the Soviet peasantry had ceased to be ‘an object of the agronomic influence’. Thus, according to Chayanov, in contemporary realities, old methods and schemes of agronomic work became ineffective.
Archivists dated the documents in the file to 1930. We do not know reasons for such dating, but it raises some doubts. We can be certain about relative dating and the lower chronological frame — 1927. According to the address-reference book All Moscow, Kritzman moved to Room 327 of the 2nd House of Soviets in 1927 (All Moscow (1927) Address-Reference Book for 1927: 3rd year of publication by the Moscow Council; with the new plan for the city of Moscow, Moscow, p. 147).
There are more doubts about the upper chronological frame. If all these documents are really related to each other, the text should be dated according to the letter to Kritzman. Chayanov wrote that he had not finished an agronomic essay (in collaboration with P. Ya. Gurov and S.G. Uzhansky), because he was terribly upset by the first days of work of the First All-Union Conference of Marxist Agrarians. Moreover, Chayanov “did not get Sadyrin’s article, which made him throw away the whole ‘reality’ and end his ‘cooperation’ in the same purely theoretical terms as he had started” (ARAS. F. 528. Inv. 5. F. 137. L. 1). Chayanov could mean his articles for the Great Soviet Encyclopedia, in which Kritzman edited the section of economic sciences and the subsection of economic policy until 1931; or for one of the periodicals, in which Kritzman was a member of the editorial board (for instance, On the Agrarian Front). Chayanov could use the word ‘cooperation’ as a title for the typescript sent to Kritzman for proofreading and editing.
By the end of 1929, Chayanov was in an extremely difficult situation, and it became even worse after the First All-Union Conference of Marxist Agrarians, at which Chayanov and his colleagues were ideologically persecuted. Probably, after Stalin’s speech, Kritzman decided to postpone or abandon this publication. There is no article by Chayanov in the Great Soviet Encyclopedia, and no articles by Gurov or Uzhansky in the corresponding volumes; and this typescript was not published.
If our reasoning is correct, Chayanov’s courage can hardly be overestimated: under the huge ideological and psychological pressure, he decided to publicly announce his disagreement with Stalin’s course.
Editor’s notes are marked as Ed. and given in square brackets.

Chayanov, collectivization, peasantry, state, social agronomy, socialism.

Chayanov Alexander V.
Afanasenkov Vladislav O. (publisher), Senior Researcher, Moscow School of Social and Economic Sciences; Junior Researcher, Research Centre for Economic and Social History, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration. Vernadskogo Prosp., 82, Moscow, 119571, Russia.
E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

 

Sumida S. Rethinking Marx’s theory of the small-scale mode of production in the perspective of the small peasantry theory // The Russian Peasant Studies. 2022. V.7. №1. P. 29-51.

DOI: 10.22394/2500-1809-2022-7-1-29-51

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The translated article of the Japanese historian of social thought and Marxist Soichiro Sumida considers the understanding of the small-scale mode of production by Karl Marx. The author argues that the MEGA facilitates an objective interpretation of Marx’s works by excluding any impurities and distortions based on ideological convictions. Thus, Sumida analyzes and compares the traditional Japanese economic theories that developed under the influence of Marx and the texts of Marx to examine the concept of ‘small economy’. According to Sumida, by referring to the small peasantry in their works, previous generations of researchers erroneously studied the groups which Marx called ‘small farmers’. However, according to Marx, ‘small peasant’ and ‘small farmer’ are different categories.

Karl Marx, peasantry, small economy, original accumulation.

Soichiro Sumida, PhD (Sociology), Visiting Researcher, Carl von Ossietzky University of Oldenburg, Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences and Humanities. Germany. D-10117 Berlin Jägerstrasse 22/23.
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Amgalan S. Sanzheev (translater), PhD Student, Tokyo University of Foreign Studies. 3-11-1, Asahi-cho, Fuchu-shi, Tokyo 183-8534, Japan.
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Afanasenkov Vladislav O. (editor), Researcher, Chayanov Research Center, Moscow School of Social and Economic Sciences; Junior Researcher, Research Laboratory of Economic and Social History, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration. Vernadskogo Prosp., 82, Moscow, 119571, Russia.
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Afanasenkov V.O. Modernization of animal husbandry in the post-Stalin period: Contradictions and dilemmas of Khrushchev’s agrarian policy // The Russian Peasant Studies. 2021. V.6. №2. P. 166-171.

DOI: 10.22394/2500-1809-2021-6-2-166-171

  • About the author

Afanasenkov Vladislav O., Junior Researcher, Research Laboratory of Economic and Social History, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration. Vernadskogo Prosp., 82, Moscow, 119571, Russia.
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Chayanov A.V. What will our national economy be like after the war? (Article of A.V. Chayanov) // The Russian Peasant Studies. 2021. V.6. №1. P. 6-12.

DOI: 10.22394/2500-1809-2021-6-1-6-12

  • Annotation

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This article by A.V. Chayanov was published in the edition of the Moscow Union of Consumer Societies “Cooperative Rural Calendar for 1918” (Moscow, 1917, pp. 42–44). The article is of interest mainly as a short, impressive, journalistic, rapid forecast of the possible evolutionary directions of the Russian economy and society in the short-term and mid-term national-economic perspective. This is a polemical political-economic article due to Chayanov’s reflections on the interpretation of such concepts as ‘state socialism’ and ‘socialism’ in general, on the meaning of ‘public reason’ in the ongoing and future reforms, and also due to Chayanov’s forecasts of the Russian economic development as determined by such multidirectional economic, political and social factors as the state debt that had multiplied during the war, the weakening impact of inflation on the economy, and the after-war tasks of transferring the economy to a peaceful track. In his positive forecasts, Chayanov put special hopes on the awakening social and productive forces of the Russian peasantry. Chayanov believed that the growth of culture, labor productivity and cooperation among the peasantry would allow to find a way out of the impasse of the 1917 economic devastation. Although, as the later historical events showed, Chayanov’s belief in ‘public reason’ and the corresponding humanistic socialist prospects for Russia did not come true, he systematically identified the key dominants of both revolutionary and evolutionary transformations of the huge peasant country under the great social-political upheavals of the 20th century. 

 Agrarian reform, A.V. Chayanov, state socialism, cooperation, peasantry, public reason, World War I, revolution.

Chayanov Alexander V.
Afanasenkov Vladislav O., Researcher, Chayanov Research Center, Moscow School of Social and Economic Sciences; Junior Researcher, Research Laboratory of Economic and Social History, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration. Vernadskogo Prosp., 82, Moscow, 119571, Russia.
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Afanasenkov V.O. Grain production in the provinces of Siberia (in the late 19th – early 20th centuries). On the relative indicators of yield statistics developed by the Central Statistical Committee of the Ministry of Internal Affairs // The Russian Peasant Studies. 2020. V.5. №3. P. 6-46.

DOI: 10.22394/2500-1809-2020-5-3-6-46

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The article considers the relative indicators of yield statistics developed by the Central Statistical Committee (CSC), based on the data from four Siberian provinces —Yenisei, Irkutsk, Tobolsk and Tomsk—for 1896–1913. The author analyzes food norms in the pre-revolutionary statistical literature and practice, and unifying coefficients for cereals, explains the need for such indicators, presents and examines the rows of per capita yields for each of the Siberian provinces. Based on the comparisons with the current statistics consisting of voluntary correspondents’ answers, the author questions the reliability of the CSC’s data. The article also considers the number of livestock in the Siberian provinces, possible methods and techniques for summing up the number of different types of livestock, and the fodder norms and sets presented in the literature. The author describes features of the production of basic feeds as recorded by the yield statistics of the CSC (potatoes, hay, straw, feed grain) and as calculated with the production indicators based on the CSC’s statistical data and expert estimates (cake, chaff). Yearly data on livestock and feed production is grouped into six-year periods, from which averages are calculated for comparison. The author provides several interpretations of the results related to the reliability of the CSC’s crop statistics and to the possibility of its use in further historical research.

agrarian history, per capita yields, Siberia, statistics of animal husbandry, yields statistics

Afanasenkov Vladislav O., Junior Researcher, Research Laboratory of Economic and Social History, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration. Vernadskogo Prosp., 82, Moscow, 119571, Russia.
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Chayanov A.V. Peasant economy in Belgium (Article of A.V. Chayanov) // The Russian Peasant Studies. 2019. V.4. №4. P. 53-57.

DOI: 10.22394/2500-1809-2019-4-4-53-57

  • Annotation

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  • About the authors

This is an early work of Alexander Chayanov first published in the journal Krestyanskoe delo (Peasant Work) in 1910. The article is based on Chayanov’s observations during his stay in Belgium in summer of 1909, when, according to one of his biographers, he tried to find development models for the Russian agriculture. On behalf of the Belgian farmer Octave Colyar, Chayanov described the changes in the Belgian agriculture after the great agricultural crisis (depression) of the late 19th century. The inflow of North-American and Russian grain to the Belgian market (the so-called ‘grain invasion’) had negative impact on prices and made agricultural producers change their specialization—Belgium turned from an exporter of grain to an exporter of livestock products. The article presents Chayanov at the beginning of his career, before the development of his theory of consumption-labor balance. Not only in his early works but also throughout his career, Chayanov used the comparative method to study the agricultural development of Russia and Western Europe. However, the Belgian case was one of the most important. In this article, Chayanov is an agrarian economist, sociologist and rural anthropologist presenting a detailed portrait of the peasant based on the history of his economy.
The publication with comments was prepared by V.O. Afanasenkov.

agrarian history, Chayanov, Belgium, global agricultural crisis, ‘grain invasion’, peasant economy

Chayanov Alexander V.

Editor: Vladislav O. Afanasenkov—Researcher, Chayanov Research Center, Moscow School of Social and Economic Sciences. 119571, Moscow, Vernadskogo Prosp., 82.
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Afanasenkov V.О. An early work of A.V. Chayanov on the Belgian peasant economy (a publisher’s preface) // The Russian Peasant Studies. 2019. V.4. №4. P. 50-52.

DOI: 10.22394/2500-1809-2019-4-4-50-52

  • Annotation

  • Keywords

  • About the author

This is an early work of Alexander Chayanov first published in the journal Krestyanskoe delo (Peasant Work) in 1910. The article is based on Chayanov’s observations during his stay in Belgium in summer of 1909, when, according to one of his biographers, he tried to find development models for the Russian agriculture. On behalf of the Belgian farmer Octave Colyar, Chayanov described the changes in the Belgian agriculture after the great agricultural crisis (depression) of the late 19th century. The inflow of North-American and Russian grain to the Belgian market (the so-called ‘grain invasion’) had negative impact on prices and made agricultural producers change their specialization—Belgium turned from an exporter of grain to an exporter of livestock products. The article presents Chayanov at the beginning of his career, before the development of his theory of consumption-labor balance. Not only in his early works but also throughout his career, Chayanov used the comparative method to study the agricultural development of Russia and Western Europe. However, the Belgian case was one of the most important. In this article, Chayanov is an agrarian economist, sociologist and rural anthropologist presenting a detailed portrait of the peasant based on the history of his economy.

agrarian history, Chayanov, Belgium, global agricultural crisis, ‘grain invasion’, peasant economy

Afanasenkov Vladislav O.—Researcher, Chayanov Research Center, Moscow School of Social and Economic Sciences. 119571, Moscow, Vernadskogo Prosp., 82.
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