Peasant Survival Strategies in Late Imperial Russia: The Social Uses of the Mental Hospital

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Julie V Brown, Associate Professor and Head (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
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Abstract: This paper examines the social functions of the asylum in late imperial Russia based upon analysis of asylum annual reports and related documents. Seasonal variations in patient admissions and discharges suggest that the use of asylums fluctuated according to the requirements of the peasant economy. My evidence also indicates that the asylum fulfilled essentially the same functions for workers and patients, and that to a certain extent the two statuses were interchangeable. While the asylum remained a powerful and coercive means of social control, the beleagured peasant population managed to incorporate the institution into its increasingly desperate strategies for survival.

Additional Information

Social Problems, 34:311-329.
Language: English
Date: 1987
Imperial Russia, social functions, asylums, seasonal variations, peasant population

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