Item Details

Crime and Punishment in the Russian Revolution: Mob Justice and Police in Petrograd

Tsuyoshi Hasegawa
Format
Book
Published
Cambridge, Massachusetts : The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, 2017.
Language
English
ISBN
9780674972063, 0674972066
Summary
"In a new perspective on the Russian Revolution, Tsuyoshi Hasegawa examines in detail the convulsions of the revolutionary year from March 1917 to March 1918 through the lens of violent crime, police behavior, and the responses of ordinary people in the capital city, St. Petersburg. A frightening rise in crime, especially violent crime, threatened the daily life of ordinary citizens. They often took the law into their own hands, and frequently resorted to mob justice, a reflection of the breakdown of the social fabric as well as the psychological state of people uneasy about or threatened by the changes going on around them. Crime and Punishment in the Russian Revolution examines how the new police power created under the Provisional Government broke down, the nature of the crimes threatening the city, and how people reacted. It then explores how violent crime continued to rise under the Bolshevik regime, and what the Bolsheviks did to control upheaval in the streets. The result is a new way of looking at the nature of Bolshevik power after the October Revolution. The violent explosion of drunken pogroms in November and December 1917 greatly shocked the Bolshevik leadership. Unlike previous works that treat them as a minor episode, this book considers the drunken pogroms the crucial turning point of the Bolsheviks' policy on the maintenance of law and order. The Bolshevik leadership reconstituted the police as a strongly centralized force with power over the local forces and militias, establishing a top-down pattern of control that would continue, even intensify, when the capital was moved to Moscow"--
Contents
  • Introduction
  • Prelude to revolution
  • Crime on the rise
  • Why did the crime rate shoot up?
  • Militias rise and fall
  • An epidemic of mob justice
  • Crime after the Bolshevik takeover
  • The Bolsheviks and the militia
  • Conclusion.
Description
351 pages : illustrations, maps ; 22 cm
Notes
Includes bibliographical references and index.
Technical Details
  • Access in Virgo Classic

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