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Regular version of the site

Article

Alexandre Radichtchev en Sibérie et le commerce russo-chinois au XVIIIe siècle

Slavica occitania. 2012. No. 35. P. 23-47.

Alexander Radichtchev, Russian man of letters, writer, and philosopher of the Enlightenment, became famous with his book "Journey from Petersburg to Moscow" (1790), in which he criticized autocracy and serfdom. He was keenly interested in the economic issues of his time and also wrote during his exile in Siberia in 1792 a work especially devoted to the Russian-Chinese trade in Kiakhta. Here, he highlights the opportunities and the drawbacks for Russia in developing trade with China, and the impact of such trade on the national economy and the way of life of the Siberian people. In this article, Radichtchev’s "Letter on trade with China" is thus analyzed as a valuable source for our understanding both of the specific context of the relations between two neighboring empires in the late eighteenth century and of Radichtchev’s own role as a precursor of economics in Russia.