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Stephen Vincent Bittner
California State University (Rohnert Park, CA 94928-3609)

Summer Stipends
Research Programs

[Grant products]

$6,000 (approved)
$6,000 (awarded)

Grant period:
6/1/2015 – 7/31/2015

Vineyard Colonies: Wine and Wine-making in Imperial Russia and the Soviet Union

Summer research and writing on European and Russian History, and History of Science.

"Vineyard Colonies" examines the two centuries of interaction between Russia and the wine economies and cultures of the Black Sea--Bessarabia (Moldova), Crimea, and Georgia. After the Russian Empire annexed these territories in the eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, wine became an increasingly important part of Russian and Soviet culture--as a luxury item, a mark of refinement, and an object of connoisseurship. Consequently, by the mid-1980s, the Soviet Union was the world's fourth largest producer of wine, trailing only Spain, France, and Italy. "Vineyard Colonies" contributes to two of the most active arenas of debate in the historiography of Russia and the Soviet Union: studies of imperialism and consumption. I intend to use an NEH Summer Stipend to complete the archival research for this untold and significant history.