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The Gulag After StalinRedefining Punishment in Khrushchev's Soviet Union, 1953-1964$
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Jeffrey S. Hardy

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781501702792

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501702792.001.0001

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A Khrushchevian Synthesis

A Khrushchevian Synthesis

The Birth of the Late Soviet Penal System

(p.160) 5 A Khrushchevian Synthesis
The Gulag After Stalin

Jeffrey S. Hardy

Cornell University Press

This chapter discusses the late Soviet penal system. The early to mid-1960s was an era of idealism in the Soviet Union, fueled by rising standards of living, increased productivity, new scientific discoveries, and technological advances. There was genuine euphoria on a national scale. However, this euphoria ultimately did not translate into the penal sphere. Prisons were not closed; colonies of various regimen levels persisted; a new corps of hyperqualified personnel was not recruited; and crime remained a perpetual and serious thorn in the side of the communist vision. The Gulag did not fade away into oblivion, but remained a testament to the failure of Soviet socialism in achieving a more harmonious society.

Keywords:   penal reform, Soviet penal system, incarceration, prisons, Gulag, socialism

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