Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Philosophy (Ph.D)



First Advisor

Mauricio Borrero

Second Advisor

Lara Vapnek

Third Advisor

Alejandro Quintana


Most historiography of the Russian Revolution underestimates the impact of the populists of the nineteenth century in shaping political decision-making that led to early Soviet national development as well as the women brought up within the movement. Populism and the legacy of the narodniki is often a separate body of research, or explained within a distinct political category of its own. Likewise, most scholars see the socialist movement at the turn of the century as a divergence away from the populists. However, through the writings and legacy of Nadezhda Krupskaya, Lenin's wife, she demonstrates a political and cultural transcendence of Russia’s populist past that guides the Bolshevik project forward in a way that intersects class, gender, and education. Russian populism, mainly defined by the prerogatives of Russian intellectuals like Herzen and Chernyshevski, is often underestimated and should be considered a key principle phenomenon that brought Krupskaya into the socialist movement and guided Bolshevik perspectives on education that came about during and after 1917. Her admiration for literary greats like Tolstoy, Pushkin, and the philosophy of Lavrov explain the framework that prompted a rethinking in culture as “proletarian,” and built national unity through reclaiming the past as their own.