Producing, Consuming & Perceiving Prisons in the Former Soviet UnionIn The Gulag's Shadow
Public Perceptions of Prisons

What do people think about prison and punishment in the former Soviet Union? We know knowledge of Stalin and the repressions vary over time and possibly link to political views, but we don’t know how knowledge of the Gulag specifically affects perceptions of the purpose and meaning of prison today.

Together with our national partners in Russia and Kazakhstan, we are conducting two surveys to explore the perceptions of ordinary people about the purpose of prison, its use as a form of punishment, and the place of prisoners in their societies. The surveys will investigate whether living in places historically and geographically close to the Gulag has any effect on these perceptions, developing greater understanding of the possible mechanisms at work.