Translated by Tanya A. Cameron
Publication date: March 2021
Fyodor Sergeyevich Olferieff (1885–1971) led a remarkable life in the shadows of history. This book presents his memoirs for the first time, translated and annotated by his granddaughter Tanya A. Cameron. Born into a noble family, Olferieff was a Russian career military officer who observed firsthand key events of the early twentieth century, including the 1905–7 revolution, the Great War, the collapse of the imperial state, and the civil wars in Ukraine and Crimea.
Olferieff wrestles with moral and political questions, wondering whether his own advantages could be justified—and whether, if born a peasant, he might have thrown himself into the revolution. As Gary Hamburg writes in an illuminating companion essay, Olferieff wrote “to understand himself and to record his broken life for posterity” as a privileged observer of a bloody, historically pivotal era.