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Open Access research with a European policy impact...

The Strathprints institutional repository is a digital archive of University of Strathclyde's Open Access research outputs. Strathprints provides access to thousands of Open Access research papers by Strathclyde researchers, including by researchers from the European Policies Research Centre (EPRC).

EPRC is a leading institute in Europe for comparative research on public policy, with a particular focus on regional development policies. Spanning 30 European countries, EPRC research programmes have a strong emphasis on applied research and knowledge exchange, including the provision of policy advice to EU institutions and national and sub-national government authorities throughout Europe.

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Welcome to Malaya Rodina ('Little Homeland') : gender and penal order in a Russian penal colony

Piacentini, L.F. and Pallot, Judith and Moran, Dominique (2009) Welcome to Malaya Rodina ('Little Homeland') : gender and penal order in a Russian penal colony. Social and Legal Studies, 18 (4). pp. 523-542. ISSN 0964-6639

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Abstract

This article presents findings from research conducted in a penal colony for young women in Russia. Russia's penal system remains under-researched in socio-legal and criminological scholarship. This contribution is the first multi-disciplinary study of Russian imprisonment to be conducted in the post-Soviet period, bringing together criminology, human geography and law. The collapse of the Soviet Union in 1991 was a landmark moment in Russia's penal trajectory due to the excessive scale and use of imprisonment as a political and cultural corrective. Our findings reveal the punishment of young women in Russia as exceptional and exclusionary. Personnel play a crucial role in shaping penal strategies that encourage young women to adopt blame and shame sensibilities. We develop a conceptualization of Russian penality as it relates to young women prisoners. We argue that the prisoner transport is the first stage in a continuum where gender, penal order and culture come together come together to create a specific penological place identity, which we conceptualize as Malaya Rodina (Little Homeland). We conclude that Russia's penal geography, and its attendant penological imagination, is a vestige of the Soviet penal monolith.