University of Wisconsin Press colophon



University of Wisconsin Madison crest that links to main university site

Association of University Presses member logo that links to main AUPresses site



Catalog Archive / Spring 2018

An Anti-Bolshevik Alternative
The White Movement and the Civil War in the Russian North

Transforms our understanding of the Russian Civil War

The traditional narrative of the Russian Civil War is one of revolution against counterrevolution, Bolshevik Reds against Tsarist Whites. Liudmila Novikova convincingly demonstrates, however, that the struggle was not between a Communist future and a Tsarist past; instead, it was a bloody fight among diverse factions of a modernizing postrevolutionary state. Focusing on the sparsely populated Arkhangelsk region in Northern Russia, she shows that the anti-Bolshevik government there, which held out from 1918 to early 1920, was a revolutionary alternative bolstered by broad popular support.

Novikova draws on declassified archives and sources in both Russia and the West to reveal the White movement in the North as a complex social and political phenomenon with a distinct regional context. She documents the politics of the Northern Government and its relations with the British and American forces who had occupied the ports of Murmansk and Arkhangelsk at the end of World War I. As the civil war continued, the increasing involvement of the local population transformed the conflict into a ferocious "people's war" until remaining White forces under General Evgenii Miller evacuated the region in February 1920.


Liudmila Novikova is the deputy director of the International Center for the History and Sociology of World War II and Its Consequences at the Higher School of Economics in Moscow. She is the coeditor of two books, including Russia's Revolution in Regional Perspective. Seth Bernstein is an assistant professor of history at the Higher School of Economics in Moscow. He is the author of Raised under Stalin: Young Communists and the Defense of Socialism and the translator of Alexander Vatlin's Agents of Terror: Ordinary Men and Extraordinary Violence in Stalin's Secret Police.


“Novikova provides an interesting history of a relatively less known area of the revolution and civil war.”
Slavonic and East European Review

“Novikova's treatment of the Russian Civil War is both original and compelling. It will be an agenda-setting book in the literature on the period. Wonderfully written and well argued, it should appeal to those with interests in Russian history and twentieth-century history more broadly.”
—Peter I. Holquist, author of Making War, Forging Revolution

“The White movement in North Russia had a character of its own, reflecting the particulars and peculiarities of the region, as this excellent new study reveals.”
Revolutionary Russia

“Novikova‚Äôs challenging work, originally published in 2011, has finally reached English-speaking audiences thanks to the translation work of Seth Bernstein. . . . Readers will quickly find that the book has a great deal to contribute toward multiple fields, including political, social, and military history, each given a fair deal of attention. . . . Any scholar studying this period of revolution, civil war, and crisis should add this book to their repertoire.”

“Clear and articulate, the narrative is detailed, exemplary, and driven by testimonials interspersed with precise description and individual portraits.”
Cahiers du monde russe


Publicity and Press Kit Resources

Click here for current & upcoming UW Press events

Download high resolution cover, color

Download high resolution cover, b/w

Download high resolution author photo, color

Download high resolution author photo, b/w

All images are at least 2.25 inches at 300 dpi wide; current title covers are a minimum of 1500 px wide/6 inches wide at 300 dpi. Please contact us if you need a custom size.

Media & bookseller inquiries regarding review copies, events, and interviews can be directed to the publicity department at or (608) 263-0734. (If you want to examine a book for possible course use, please see our Course Books page. If you want to examine a book for possible rights licensing, please see Rights & Permissions.)

An Anti-Bolshevik Alternative

Larger images

June 2018
LC: 2017046286 DK
344 pp. 6 x 9
17 b/w photos, 1 map

Book icon
Cloth $79.95 S
ISBN 9780299317409
Shopping cart

Review Cart