Marc Raeff is one of the truly outstanding scholars of Russian history. This volume offers a sampling of the best essays from his prolific, forty-year career; they span the history of Russia from the late seventeenth to the late nineteenth century. In these essays, Raeff considers the problems of imperial Russian politics and administration, analyzes Russia's intellectual and social history as it relates to the governance of the multiethnic empire, and places the institutional and intellectual history of Russia in the context of other Western and Central European developments. Raeff's essays offer a sketch of the generation that came of age in the era of the Napoleonic Wars and the ensuing attempts at constitutional reform—the generation that laid the foundations of the modern Russian national consciousness. He explores modernization reform and liberalism in the second half of the nineteenth century, the acquisition and incorporation of Russia's multiethnic population, and the politics and administration of the reigns of Peter III and Catherine II. He examines how the Russian élites assimilated values from the Western and Central European Enlightenment and assesses the important intellectual and ideological effects the Enlightenment had on the nation. The volume concludes with a comparative look at the process of Westernization, focusing on issues of literacy, state leadership, and the role of the intelligentsia. Many of these seminal essays are long out of print and hard to find. This timely volume makes Marc Raeff's insights readily available as Russia reemerges as a nation-state facing "new" challenges that are often deeply rooted in its past.