Historical Journals

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 It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Historical Journals


periodicals dealing with historical problems. In Russia the forerunner of historical journals was N. I. Novikov’s serial publication Drevniaia rossiiskaia vivliofika (Ancient Russian Bibliotheca; 1st ed., 10 vols., 1773-75; 2nd ed., 20 vols., 1788-91).

In the 19th century many specialized scholarly publications similar to historical journals appeared, published as the Zapiski (Notes), Trudy (Transactions), Izvestiia (Proceedings), or Sbornik (Collection) of various scholarly societies and universities, including the Moscow Society of History and Russian Antiquities, the Russian Historical Society, the Historical Society of Nestor the Chronicler, and the Society of History, Archaeology, and Ethnology at the University of Kazan. The Istoricheskii sbornik Vol’noi russkoi tipografii v Londone (Historical Collection of the Free Russian Printing House in London), published by A. I. Herzen and N. P. Ogarev in two volumes in 1859 and 1861, was of great significance. The first Russian historical journals, Russkii arkhiv (Russian Archive, 1863-1917) and Russkaia starina (Russian Antiquity, 1870-1918), were also the most important pre-revolutionary historical journals. A great many documents on the history of Russia, chiefly of the 18th and 19th centuries, were published in these two journals, as well as in Drevniaia i novaia Rossiia (Ancient and Modern Russia, 1875— 81), Istoricheskii vestnik (Historical Journal, 1880-1917), and Kievskaia starina (Kievan Antiquity, 1882-1906). In the early 20th century there appeared historical journals devoting much attention to the history of Russian social thought and the revolutionary movement, such as Byloe (The Past, 1906-07, 1917-26), Minuvshie gody (Past Years, 1908), and Golos minuvshego (Voice of the Past, 1913-23).

After the Great October Socialist Revolution of 1917, new historical journals were founded, reflecting the development of Marxist historical science and scholarly historical institutions. A number of historical journals reflected the public’s heightened interest in the history of the class struggle, the socialist revolution, and the Civil War of 1918-20. These included Proletarskaia revoliutsiia (Proletarian Revolution, 1921-41), originally the organ of Istpart (Commission on Party History) of the Central Committee of the ACP (Bolshevik); Katorga i ssylka (Penal Servitude and Exile, 1921-35), the organ of the All-Union Society of Former Political Prisoners and Exiles; Krasnaia letopis ’ (Red Chronicle, 1922-34, 1936-37); and a number of republic journals, notably the Ukrainian Letopis’ revoliutsii (Annals of the Revolution, 1922-33) and the Georgian Letopis’ revoliutsii (1923-31). The journal Krasnyi arkhiv (Red Archive, 1922-41) was devoted to the publication of archival materials on the history of the USSR. The journals Arkhivnoe delo (Archival Affairs, 1923-41) and Arkhivna sprava (Archival Affairs, 1926-31) were devoted to the theory and practice of archive science.

With the development of Soviet historical science there arose a need for specialized historical journals in archaeology, ethnology, Oriental studies, and Slavic studies. Two historical journals with a broad scope, Istorik-marksist(Marxist Historian, 1926-41) and Bor’ba klassov (The Class Struggle, 1931-36), published by the Society of Marxist Historians, dealt with the achievements of Soviet scholars in various branches of domestic and world history. Istoricheskii zhurnal (Historical Journal, 1937-45), the predecessor of Voprosy istorii (Problems of History), was the organ of the Institute of History of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR. New historical journals arose in the postwar years: Istorila SSSR (History of the USSR), Voprosy istorii KPSS (Problems of the History of the CPSU), and Novaia i noveishaia Istoriia (Modern and Contemporary History), all founded in 1957, and Voenno-istoricheskii zhurnal (Journal of Military History), founded in 1959.

The journals Istoricheskii arkhiv(Historical Archive) and Nauchnye doklady vysshei shkoly: Istoricheskie nauki (Papers of Higher Schools: Historical Sciences) were published from 1955 to 1962. Historical journals are published by the Academy of Sciences of the USSR, by the academies of sciences of the Union Republics, and by Moscow and Leningrad universities. Contemporary Soviet historical journals publish the results of Soviet scholars’ latest research in all spheres of historical science, various documents and materials on domestic and world history, information on scholarship in the USSR and abroad, and reviews and bibliographies.

Historical journals published in the USSR in 1972 included Vestnik drevnei istorii (Journal of Ancient History, quarterly), Voenno-istoricheskii zhurnal (Journal of Military History, monthly), Voprosy istorii (Problems of History, monthly), Voprosy istorii KPSS (Problems of the History of the CPSU, monthly), Izvestiia Sibirskogo otdeleniia AN SSSR (Proceedings of the Siberian Division of the Academy of Sciences of the USSR, Social Sciences Series, three issues yearly), Istoriia SSSR (History of the USSR, bimonthly), Narody Azii i Afriki (Peoples of Asia and Africa, bimonthly), Novaia i noveishaia Istoriia (Modern and Contemporary History, bimonthly), Sovetskaia arkhe-ologiia (Soviet Archaeology, quarterly), Sovetskaia etnografiia (Soviet Ethnology, bimonthly), Sovetskie arkhivy (Soviet Archives, bimonthly), Vestnik Leningradskogo universiteta (Journal of Leningrad University; History, Languages, and Literature Series, quarterly), and Vestnik Moskovskogo universiteta (Journal of Moscow University; Ninth Series, History, bimonthly; Fourteenth Series, Oriental Studies, biannual).

Also published were Vestsi Akademii Navuk BSSR (Proceedings of the Academy of Sciences of the Byelorussian SSR; Social Sciences Series, in Byelorussian with summaries in Russian, bimonthly), Azärbaychan SSR Yelmlär Akademiyasïnïn khäbär-läri (Proceedings of the Academy of Sciences of the Azerbaijan SSR; History, Philosophy, and Law Series, in Azerbaijani and Russian, quarterly), Qazag Ghïlïm Akademiyasïnïn khabarlarï (Proceedings of the Academy of Sciences of the Kazakh SSR; Social Sciences Series, biannually), Buletinul Akademiei de shtiints’ a RSS Moldovenesh’ (Proceedings of the Academy of Sciences of the Moldavian SSR; Social Sciences Series, three issues annually), Akhboroti Akademian fanhon RSS Tojikiston (Proceedings of the Academy of Sciences of the Tadzhik SSR; Social Sciences Division, bimonthly), Eesti NSV Teaduste aka-deemia toimetised (Proceedings of the Academy of Sciences of the Estonian SSR; Social Sciences, in Estonian and Russian, quarterly), Vestnik obshchestvennykh nauk (Journal of Social Sciences, in Armenian, published in Yerevan, monthly), Uzbekis-tandd ijtimaiy fdnldr (Social Sciences in Uzbekistan, monthly), Sovetskoe finnougrovedenie (Soviet Finno-Ugrian Studies, articles in Russian, German, English, and French, published in Tallinn, quarterly), Lietuvos TSR Mokslu akademija darbi (Transactions of the Academy of Sciences of the Lithuanian SSR; Series A, Social Sciences, in Lithuanian and Russian, three issues yearly), and Ukrains’kyi istorichnyi zhurnal (Ukrainian Historical Journal, in Ukrainian, monthly).


Ocherki istorii istoricheskoi nauki v SSSR, vol. 2, pp. 610–14; vol. 3, pp. 274–78; vol. 4, pp. 262–67. Moscow, 1960–66.
Dmitriev, S. S. “Russkie istoricheskie zhurnaly po istorii SSSR.” In S. S. Dmitriev, V. A. Fedorov, and V. I. Bovykin, Isloriia SSSR perioda kapitalizma. Moscow, 1961.
Shapiro, A. L. Bibliografiia istorii SSSR. Moscow, 1968. Pages 104–38.
Alekseeva, G. D. Oktiabr’skaia revoliutsiia i istoricheskaia nauka v Rossii (1917–1923). Moscow, 1968. Pages 39-8.
Islochnikovedenie istorii SSSR XlX-nach. XX vv. Moscow, 1970.
Lisovskii, N. M. Bibliografiia russkoi periodicheskoipechati, 1703–1900. Petrograd, 1915. Pages 922–25, 955–56, 993–95.
Russkaia periodicheskaia pechat’ (1895-Okl. 1917 gg.): Spravochnik. Moscow, 1957.
Russkaia periodicheskaia pechat’ (1702–1894): Spravochnik. Moscow, 1959.

Abroad, the first historical journals began to appear in the first half of the 19th century in Germany, Denmark, France, Great Britain, the USA, and other countries, along with sociopolitical journals of a general nature. The number of historical periodicals increased with the development of different branches of historical science. Several thousand historical journals were being published by the 1970’s, including general historical journals, journals devoted to a branch of historical science, and journals dealing with a particular historical period or event. These journals are published by scholarly institutions, higher educational institutions (chiefly universities), historical societies and associations, museums, and archives. There is an increasing tendency to establish specialized historical journals in such fields as Oriental, Byzantine, and Slavic studies, as well as archaeological journals. Among historical journals there are also a number of periodicals dealing with theoretical problems of history; an international journal of this type, History and Theory, has been published in The Hague since 1960. Finally, there are journals devoted to historical aspects of other branches of science such as economics, philosophy, law, and military affairs.

The best-known historical journals of foreign socialist countries treating problems of national and world history from the Marxist-Leninist viewpoint are the Bulgarian Istoricheski pregled (Sofia, since 1945); the Hungarian Századok (Budapest, since 1867), Acta Historica (Budapest, since 1951), and Történelme szemle (Budapest, since 1958); the Zeitschrift für Geschichts-wissenschaft of the German Democratic Republic (Berlin, since 1953); the Polish Kwartalnik historyczny (Warsaw, since 1887) and Przeglqd historyczny (Warsaw, since 1905); the Rumanian Studii revista de istorie (Bucharest, since 1948); the Czechoslovak ČeskoslovenskÝ časopis historickÝ (Prague, since 1953) and HistorickÝ časopis (Bratislava, since 1953); and the Yugoslav Historijski pregled (Zagreb, since 1954) and Istorijski časopis (Belgrade, since 1948). Historical journals in other socialist countries include Nghien cuu Lich su in the Democratic Republic of Vietnam (Hanoi, since 1959), Yoksa kwahak in the Korean Democratic People’s Republic (Pyongyang, since 1955), and Anales de la Academia de la Historia in Cuba (Havana, since 1919). A number of these journals print summaries in Russian, English, French, and German.

Of the historical journals published in the capitalist countries of Europe, those with the broadest scope include the English Historical Review in Great Britain (London, since 1886); Hispania: Revista Española de historia in Spain (Madrid, since 1940); Rivista storica Italiana in Italy (Rome, since 1884); His-torische Zeitschrift in the Federal Republic of Germany (Munich, since 1859); the French Revue historique (Paris, since 1876), Revue d’histoire moderne et contemporaine (Paris, since 1899), and Annales, économies, sociétés, civilisations (Paris, published under this title since 1946; founded in 1929 as the Annales d’histoire economique et sociale); Historisk tidsskrift in Denmark (Copenhagen, since 1840); Historisk tidskrift in Sweden (Stockholm, since 1881); Historisk tidsskrift in Norway (Oslo, since 1871); the Finnish Historiallinen aikakauskirja (Helsinki, since 1903) and Historisk tidskrift for Finland (Helsinki, since 1916); and Tijdschrift voor geschiedenis in the Netherlands (Amsterdam, since 1886).

Leading historical journals in the USA include the American Historical Review (New York, since 1895), Current History (Philadelphia, since 1914), and the Journal of Modern History (Chicago, since 1929). The most important Canadian journal is the Canadian Historical Review (Toronto, since 1920). Among historical journals published in Latin America are the Mexican journal Historia Mexicana (Mexico City, since 1951), the Argentine Historia (Buenos Aires, since 1955) and Revista de historia (Buenos Aires, since 1956), the Brazilian Revista do instituto historico e geografico Brasileiro (Rio de Janeiro, since 1838), the Chilean Boletin de la Acadimia Chilena de la Historia (Santiago, since 1933), and the Peruvian Revista historica (Lima, since 1905). Problems of Latin American history are also dealt with in the Hispanic American Historical Review (Durham, USA, since 1918).

The journal Historical Studies (Melbourne, since 1940) deals with the history of Australia and New Zealand. There are a great number of historical journals in Japan, including Toyoshi kenkyu (Kyoto, since 1935).

In capitalist countries the historical periodicals that are dominated by bourgeois methodology and that are sometimes openly hostile to Marxism-Leninism and to the socialist countries are opposed by Marxist historical journals and by other progressive journals influenced in varying degrees by Marxism. The most important of these journals are the organ of the Italian Communist Party, Studi storici (Rome, since 1959), the theoretical organ of the French Communist Party, Cahiers du communisme (Paris, since 1924), the British journal Past and Present (London, since 1952), and the Japanese journal Rekishigaku kenkyu (Tokyo, since 1933).

Many historical periodicals are being established in the developing countries. The best known are the Indian Journal of Indian History (Trivandrum, since 1921) and Indian Historical Quarterly (Calcutta, since 1925); the Pakistani Journal of the Pakistan Historical Society (Karachi, since 1953); the Burmese Journal of the Burma Research Society (Rangoon, since 1911); the Algerian Revue Africaine (Algiers, since 1856); the Egyptian Annales du service des antiquites de TEgypte (Cairo, since 1900); and the Ghanaian Transactions of the Historical Society of Ghana (Legon, since 1952).


Historical periodicals: An Annotated World List of Historical and Related Serial Publications. Edited by E. H. Boehm and L. Adolphus. Santa-Barbara-Munich, 1961.
World List of Historical Periodicals and Bibliographies. Edited by P. Caron and M. Jaryc. Oxford, 1939.
Bibliographie Historischer Zeitschriften. 1939–1951, vols. 1–3. Edited by H. Kramm. Marburg, 1952–54.
The American Historical Association’s Guide to Historical Literature. New York, 1961.
Ulrich’s Periodicals Directory: A Classified Guide to a Selected List of Current Periodicals, Foreign and Domestic, 9th ed. New York, 1959.

V. A. DUNAEVSKII and G. Z. IOFFE (historical journals abroad)

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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