The Napoleon Bonaparte Podcast 51 – Alex Mikaberidze on The Burning of Moscow

Our guest today is again the wonderful Alexander Mikaberidze. We continue the discussion from where we left off in Episode 50, talking about Napoleon’s entry into Moscow, the burning of Moscow, and the “strategic withdrawal”. Was the burning of Moscow deliberate strategy on behalf of the Russians? If they hadn’t burned it, would the outcome of the campaign have been different? Why did Napoleon stay so long in Moscow?

Alex is assistant professor of European history at Louisiana State University in Shreveport. He holds a degree in international law from Tbilisi State University (Republic of Georgia, 1999) and a Ph.D. in history from Florida State University (2003). After working for the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia (1996-2000), he taught European and Middle Eastern history at Florida State and Mississippi State Universities and lectured on strategy and policy for the U.S. Naval War College. In addition to his articles on various Napoleonic-related topics, Dr. Mikaberidze has written and edited seven books, including The Battle of Borodino: Napoleon versus Kutuzov (2007), Historical Dictionary of Georgia (2007), The Russian Officer Corps in the Revolutionary and Napoleonic Wars, 1792-1815 (2004, winner of the 2005 Literary Prize of the International Napoleonic Society), The Czar’s General: The Memoirs of a Russian General in the Napoleonic Wars (2005). He has been awarded the International Napoleonic Society’s Legion of Merit Award for his contributions to the Napoleonic studies.

The Artist-as-Napoleon

In the comments section, Simon Abrahams writes:

Thought you might be interested in how the iconic portraits of Napoleon – by Ingres, David, Gros and others – almost all resemble the artist’s self-portrait. These are not portraits of Napoleon, as most scholars imagine, but portraits of the artist-as-Napoleon, as a few alert viewers at the time did recognize. Take a look at the comparisons on my website:

They are really quite fascinating! I think there might be a whole episode of the podcast on the portraits, something we should do sometime. Thanks Simon!

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