Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Review: Sofia Perovskaya, Terrorist Princess: The Plot to Kill Tsar Alexander II and the Woman Who Led It by Robert Riggs

Title: Sofia Perovskaya, Terrorist Princess: The Plot to Kill Tsar Alexander II and the Woman Who Led It
Author: Robert Riggs
Format: Hardcover
Publisher: Global Harmony Press
Publish Date: April 24, 2018
Source: PR

What's the Story?:

From "More than ever, terrorist acts command enormous attention. Concerns about terrorism have led to sweeping new restrictive government policies on such matters as immigration and airline security. In an often repeated syndrome, the one lasting legacy the departed terrorists leave behind them is a grossly exaggerated overreaction by governments to their suicidal exploits. The overreaction derails the faith in liberty and the respect for diversity that characterize an enlightened civilization.

Sofia Perovskaya is a fascinating case study. She came from a privileged family with royal connections. She was not victimized by poverty, class or social stigma. She was known for being kind to the sick and devoted to her mother. We have much to learn from examining her peculiar turn of personality, one that takes over people who are generally intelligent, ascetic, creative, and motivated, and makes them killers who thirst for martyrdom.

This book is part of a series of profiles of historical terrorists. The profiles demonstrate the folly of the many in government and media who continue to confuse the desperate "cause" adopted by the terrorist with the real cause of the terrorist act. Terrorism has deep roots in an irrational facet of the human psyche. Through this series we explore how, as society itself has moved toward pluralism and respect for human life, the terrorist act of self-immolation has emerged and grown in its appeal to the dark side of the psyche."

My Two Cents:

 "Sofia Perovskaya, Terrorist Princess" is the story of Sofia, a woman from a family of connections who seemed to have no reason to plot against the Russian monarchy. But plot she did, upending the country and striking fear into so many. It's this act of creating fear that makes Perovskaya a terrorist. This book is part of a series on terrorists throughout history and what drove them to such desperate acts.

The writing of this book was very in depth. I wasn't familiar with Sofia Perovskaya so I appreciated all of the detail that the author put into the book to talk about her background and what drove her to plot against Tsar Alexander II. The author also gives a lot of detail about terrorism itself and sometimes verged into feeling very textbook like. It's clear that the author did a ton of research. The facts sometimes came too fast and furious to digest easily.

Overall, this is a great introduction to both what terrorism is and what drove Perovskaya. 

1 comment:

  1. This sounds like an interesting read! I love books about parts of history I'm completely unfamiliar with, because they can teach me so much :)


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