Added: December 3, 2016 – Last updated: December 3, 2016


Speaker: Rhiannon Dowling

Title: Soviet Women in Brezhnev's Courts

Subtitle: 'The Case of Two Boys,' Gender, and Justice in late Soviet Russia

Conference: 46th Annual Convention of the Association for Slavic, East European, & Eurasian Studies: 25 Years After the Fall of the Berlin Wall: Historical Legacies and New Beginnings (November 20-23, 2014)

Session: Gender, Crime and Justice in the History of Russia, 1700-2000 - II

Place: San Antonio, Texas, United States

Date: November 21, 2014

Language: English

Keywords: Modern History: 20th Century | European History: Russian History


Link: -



Abstract: »This paper examines a 1967-1969 criminal trial, dubbed “the case of two boys” by the jurist and memoirist Dina Kaminskaya, in which the young pair are charged with the rape and murder of their female classmate. This trial was typical in that it required the court to apply moral norms and express public outrage (in spite of the law and the evidence at hand) to a criminal case, and yet exceptional in that it drew a good deal of media attention and was subsequently examined in writing by numerous Soviet intellectuals, most of whom were women. In Kaminskaya's view, justice demanded that all of the officials and spectators involved set aside personal feelings, prejudices, and popular outrage to see (or at least entertain the possibility) that the boys were innocent; and yet participation in the trial gave Kaminskaya, journalist Olga Chaikovskaya, and other female writers the authority and a platform to publicly examine the gendered meanings of crime, victimhood and justice in the age of mature socialism.« (Source: All Academic)

Wikipedia: History of Europe: History of Russia / History of the Soviet Union (1964–82) | Dina Kaminskaya