Cover image for Rasputin : a life
Rasputin : a life
Fuhrmann, Joseph T., 1940-
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Praeger, 1990.
Physical Description:
x, 276 pages, 10 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations ; 24 cm
General Note:
Includes index.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
DK254.R3 F78 1990 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area
DK254.R3 F78 1990 Adult Non-Fiction Non-Fiction Area

On Order



A biography of Grigory Rasputin, the Russian holy man who hastened the collapse of an empire. The book recounts Rasputin's journey from his peasant origins in Siberia to his powerful position at the right hand of Tsar Nicholas and Alexandra.

Author Notes

JOSEPH T. FUHRMANN, a Professor of History at Murray State University, studied Russian history at Indiana University and was a graduate exchange-student at Moscow University.

Reviews 2

Library Journal Review

The author distinguishes fact and probability from myth in the life of Grigory Rasputin, a Siberian peasant known as a profligate, religious leader, and faith healer. Fuhrmann documents how Rasputin's ability to aid the hemophiliac heir, Alexis, led to his power to influence Empress Alexandra and through her, Nicholas II, Russia's last tsar. He shows that Rasputin's control over appointments in both government and the church led to their increased ineffectiveness and corruption, as well as popular distrust of them. Although covering much of the same material as Alex DeJonge's The Life and Times of Grigorii Rasputin ( LJ 4/15/82), this study is better documented and more scholarly. Recommended for general and area studies collections.-- Rena Fowler, Northern Michigan Univ. Lib., Marquette (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Choice Review

In this rich and learned book, Fuhrmann (Murray State University) presents a detailed biography of Rasputin well integrated with discussions of the religious, social, and political context of the times. Even if the subject were not lurid and fascinating, this book would provide useful insight into Russian life at several levels--from Siberian peasantry to the court in St. Petersburg. Fuhrmann makes no attempt to argue a thesis or explain the significance of his material other than brief comments, e.g., that Rasputin "helped destroy an empire." There are no chapter summaries nor is there a concluding chapter. Fuhrmann's narrative technique depends much on direct quotation from primary souces. Control of the sources and the literature and the author's willingness to offer clear choices in judging some of the more controversial aspects of Rasputin's career help make the work very useful. Among many contributions worth noting is Fuhrmann's clear exposition of Rasputin's relationship with the official church, explained more thoroughly and sympathetically than in any other account in English. In sum, the book offers sound scholarship on important matters and will make a useful contribution to almost any collection on modern Russia. College, university, and public libraries. -J. T. Flynn, College of the Holy Cross

Table of Contents

Rise to Power Siberian Childhood From Kazan to St. Petersburg A Man of God from Tobolsk
The Secrets of Father Grigory
The Teachings of Father Grigory Challenges and Setbacks First Crisis Illidor: Radical on the Right Jerusalem Again a Brilliant Star Disgrace ""The Little One Will Not Die"" ""As Long as I Live, I Will Not Permit War"" Nearly Assissinated-War At
The Height of Power Rasputin Returns A New Saint, a National Scandal Rasputin and the Homosexual Bishop Rasputin-Master of the Russian Orthodox Church Th