Alexander Martin

Alexander Martin

Professor of History; Director of Graduate Studies; and Concurrent Professor, Department of German and Russian

(574) 631-9907
412 Decio
Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania
Time Period(s)
Early Modern, Modern
Intellectual, Political, Urban
Europe, Russia

Alexander Martin teaches the history of imperial Russia and of Europe in the long 19th century.

His research focuses on Russia and its relationship with Europe from the Enlightenment to the mid-19th century. He has published three monographs. The first was an intellectual and political history: Romantics, Reformers, Reactionaries (1997), a study of Russian conservatism in the era of the Napoleonic Wars. His second was an urban history: Enlightened Metropolis (2013), which explores the transformation of Moscow into a modern city from the perspective of social, intellectual, and cultural history. His third, From the Holy Roman Empire to the Land of the Tsars (2022), is a microhistory that uses the colorful figure of the barber-surgeon, actor, merchant, freemason, pastor, and writer J.A. Rosenstrauch to explore questions of empire, mobilities, colonization, memory, and self-fashioning in Germany and Russia in the Age of Revolution.

He has also published two book-length primary source editions: an English translation of the priest’s son Dmitrii Rostislavov’s account of life in provincial Russia in the early 19th century, and a bilingual (German and Russian) edition of J.A. Rosenstrauch’s memoir of Napoleon’s occupation of Moscow.  


From the Holy Roman Empire to the Land of the Tsars: One Family’s Odyssey, 1768-1870  (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2022). Winner of the Reginald Zelnik Book Prize of the Association for Slavic, East European, and Eurasian Studies.

Enlightened Metropolis: Constructing Imperial Moscow, 1762-1855 (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013).  Winner of the Marc Raeff Prize of the Eighteenth-Century Russian Studies Association and the Best Book in non-North American Urban History Award of the Urban History Association.  Russian edition published in 2015.

Romantics, Reformers, Reactionaries: Russian Conservative Thought and Politics in the Reign of Alexander I (DeKalb: Northern Illinois University Press, 1997).  Russian edition published in 2021.

Primary-Source Editions

Editor and translator of Dmitrii Rostislavov, Provincial Russia in the Age of Enlightenment: The Memoir of a Priest’s Son (DeKalb: Northern Illinois University Press, 2002).

Editor and author of the introduction to И.А. Розенштраух, Исторические происшествия в Москве 1812 года во время присутствия в сем городе неприятеля [J.A. Rosenstrauch, Historical Events in Moscow in 1812 at the Time of the Enemy’s Presence in this City] (Moscow: NLO, 2015).