Boris Fedorovich Porshnev

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Porshnev, Boris Fedorovich


Born Feb. 22 (Mar. 7), 1905, in St. Petersburg; died Nov. 25, 1972, in Moscow. Soviet historian and sociologist. Professor and doctor of history (1941) and of philosophy (1966).

Porshnev completed his graduate studies at the Institute of History of the Russian Associations of Social Science Research Institutes in 1929 and taught in higher educational institutions in Rostov-on-Don and Moscow. From 1957 to 1966 he directed the section of modern Western European history at the Institute of History of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR. In 1966 he became director of a research group on the history of socialist ideas, and beginning in 1968 he directed the section on the history of social thought at the Institute of World History of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR.

Porshnev’s major works deal with the history of popular movements in France (Popular Uprisings in France Before the Fronde, 1623–1648; State Prize of the USSR, 1950), the history of socialist ideas, and the history of international relations in the 17th century. Many of his works are concerned with social psychology, political economy, ethnography, and anthropology.

Porshnev was awarded an honorary doctorate by the University of Clermont-Ferrand in France (1957).


Ocherk politicheskoi ekonomii feodalizma. Moscow, 1956.
Sovremennoe sostoianie voprosa o reliktovykh gominoidakh. Moscow, 1963.
Feodalizm i narodnye massy. Moscow, 1964.
Mel’e. Moscow, 1964.
Sotsial’naia psikhologiia i istoriia. Moscow, 1966.
Frantsiia, Angliiskaia revoliutsiia i evropeiskaia politika ν seredine XVII v. Moscow, 1970.
O nachale chelovecheskoi istorii Moscow, 1974.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.