This essay looks at the development of the discipline of philosophy on the early Russian internet, from the mid 1990s until 2008. Rather than focus on a taxonomical approach to such projects, I look at three conceptual categories that underpin philosophy’s presence online: the internet as library, the internet as salon, and the internet as a way of thinking. Through analyses of both the most representative philosophical sites and the most innovative, I show how the discipline of philosophy depended on existing internet infrastructure, how sites tended to emphasize access over aesthetics, and how philosophy’s early presence on the internet was regularly negotiated vis-à-vis its relationship to books and journals. The essay ends with an analysis of the online philosophical-philological work of Mikhail Epstein, who mobilized the cognitive and philosophical possibilities of the new digital platform with his InteLnet domain in the mid 1990s.

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