'Till Death Do Us Part’: Spousal Homicide in Early Modern Russia
The history of domestic violence, let alone domestic homicide, in Russia has yet to be written. This article focuses on the legal attitudes to domestic and especially marital homicide in early modern Russia and explores types of and methods used in spousal killings. The research is based on court records in addition to laws, legal documents and other sources. Its preliminary conclusions include assumptions about scale of domestic violence, gender of perpetrators and victims, main trends in domestic homicide and their connections with available explanatory frameworks. The study reveals that Russian households were violent places accounting for different types of assaults and homicides, but in all these acts women died more frequently than men. Marital homicide occurred in all social groups in Russia. Motives and methods for marital homicides were consistent with gendered theories of power relations. Penal policies also reveal harsher treatment of women than men, pointing to the gendered definitions of power disciplining methods.
The article acts as an Introduction to the speaicl issue of the journal which deals with domestic violence and authority's abuse in early modern Europe
This book focuses on actual political and cultural consequences of the Paris terrorist attack in 2015.
The chapter gives an overview of the development of early modern Russian law. During this period, Russian law was undergoing a definite modernization which intensified in the seventeenth and, particularly, in the eighteenth century. The law became more rational, predictable and efficient. Russia actively engaged in codification and systematization of law, and that led to the more regular application of procedure and better lawyering. Russian law quickly adapted to the social, economic and political challenges, as it was under constant revision. Legal rules became more uniform and unvarying in their application. The Russian legal system grew to be hierarchical and bureaucratic, staffed by professionals via either practice or education. Due to these changes, the legal reforms of the nineteenth century allowed the Russian Empire to become a Rechtsstaat, although it was widely criticized and often even denied by contemporaries and scholars.
This article explores early modern criminal procedure and the emergence of a culture of appeal in the Russian system of criminal justice. It raises several important questions: Why did the appeal procedure not function as an ultimate guarantee of justice? How did Russian procedural law make appeals nothing more than the last stop on an ‘assembly line’, as a confirmation of a verdict rather than another court instance? How was criminal procedure connected with the political regime and a broader understanding of justice in early modern Russia? And what was then the ultimate goal of appeals that encouraged litigants to proceed with their cases to the highest court authorities? The author argues that Russia developed a so-called ‘appeal culture’, i.e., a situation in which individuals were willing to proceed with an appeal despite the quality of judicial decisions. Coupled with selective justice and a subjective understanding of fair trial, the appeal became one of the main means of acquiring a desirable verdict or, at least, of preventing an adversary from receiving such a verdict.
This book combines the approaches of history and criminology to study parricide and non-fatal violence against parents from across traditional period and geographical boundaries, encompassing research on Asia as well as Europe and North America. Parricide and non-fatal violence against parents are rare but significant forms of family violence. They have been perceived to be a recent phenomenon related to bad parenting and child abuse often in poorer socioeconomic circumstances – yet they have a history, which provides insights for modern-day explanation and intervention. Research on violence against parents has concentrated on child abuse and mental illness but, by using a rich array of primary and secondary documents, such as court cases, criminal statistics, newspaper reports, and legal and medical literature, this book shows that violence against parents is also shaped by conflicts related to parental authority, the rise of children’s rights, conflicting economic and emotional expectations, and other sociohistorical factors.
Gewaltsame Ausschreitungen, Morde, Gewaltexzesse – in allen Gesellschaften war und ist Gewalt allgegenwärtig, wenn auch in sehr unterschiedlicher Ausformung und Intensität. Die Hemmschwelle zur Gewaltanwendung scheint in der Gemeinschaft Gleichgesinnter zu sinken, Gewalt wird oft von Gruppen ausgeübt. Die von der Deutschen Forschungsgemeinschaft finanzierte Forschergruppe »Gewaltgemeinschaften«, die als Verbund von 2009 bis 2015 Bestand hatte, befasste sich mit sozialen Gruppen oder Netzwerken, für die physische Gewalt einen wesentlichen Teil ihrer Existenz ausmacht. Dazu zählen gotische Kriegergruppen, Söldner und Räuberbanden ebenso wie Wehrverbände und Jugendgruppen des 20. Jahrhunderts. Der vorliegende Band vermittelt Einblicke in die Arbeit der Forschergruppe. Er gibt einen Überblick über die Breite der untersuchten Epochen und Regionen und macht in exemplarischer Weise Zugänge, Grundaspekte und zentrale Fragen der Auseinandersetzung mit Gewaltgemeinschaften deutlich. Es geht um die Gewaltausübung selbst, um die Dimension der Materialität, um Kohäsionskräfte in Gewaltgemeinschaften, um Konjunkturen und Dynamiken der Gewalt sowie um Bedingungen des Zerfalls und das Nachleben von Gewaltgemeinschaften in der Erinnerungskultur. Die Spannbreite reicht von der Antike bis in die Gegenwart und umfasst West-, Süd-, Mittel- und Osteuropa ebenso wie ausgewählte Regionen Afrikas.
This article investigates eighteenth-century Russian legal thought on the criminalisation of sex and sexualities in light of Western European scholarship on the same themes. It reveals the background to and preconditions for the transfer of knowledge and intellectual frameworks that structured societal understandings of sexuality and, at the same time, created the mechanisms of social and legal control over such behaviour. The study shows that the absence of developed Russian legal philosophy did not prevent the development of a criminal law with the same goals as more developed jurisdictions. Commentaries on and classification of sex crimes in Russia followed patterns familiar to Western Europe and used similar definitions rooted in Christian moral philosophy and canon law. The concern with the proper, rational and orderly development of state and society, central to the era, meant that laws relating to the criminalisation of sex and sexuality were not liberalised.
The chapter unfolds history of violence against women in nineteenth-century Russia. Based on the court materials and legal documents it tells the depressing history of rape and domestic violence, to which Russian women of all social ranks were subjected.