Vladimir Putin’s recent call in his December 1st speech to the Federal Assembly for ’conciliation’ to be the theme for the hundredth centenary of the 1917 Revolution, reflects a position that has underpinned official constructions of the Soviet past for the past twenty years and that, latterly, has been growing in confidence. In her presentation, Prof. Pallot will compare how Stalin’s Gulag is remembered in state institutions, not at the centre, but in the peripheries. Prof. Pallot takes her examples from regional prison authorities and regional (краеведческие) museums funded by local authorities and examines how the gulag is incorporated (or not) into their histories and to what extent they reproduce (or contest) official narratives emanating from the centre.
Judith Pallot is Professor Emeritus at the University of Oxford. She has been researching The Soviet Union and Russian Federation since the early 1970s publishing on the pre-revolutionary peasantry, Soviet spatial planning, post-Soviet rural survival strategies and latterly, the Russian Prison System. She has written numerous articles in scholarly journals on imprisonment in Russia and the former Soviet Union and has published two books: ‘Gender, Geography and Punishment: Women’s experiences of Carceral Russia’ (OUP, 2012) with Laura Piacentini and “Waiting at the Prison Gate: Women, Identity and Punishment in Russia” (IB Tauris, 2016) with Elena Katz. She is currently President of the British Association for Slavonic and East European Studies.