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Siberian Prison System

Uploaded by Admin on Apr 26, 2000

PRISON SYSTEM IN SIBERIA My project is dedicated to description of the history of Siberia as a place to where send prisoners--from the days of Ivan the Terrible until today. I will tell about the reasons for choosing Siberia as place of exile, the system of prisons and conditions in Siberian prisons. Choosing Siberia as a Place of Exile As with other Western powers that gained colonies overseas, the acquisition of Siberia led to making it a place of exile. Criminal and political prisoners had been sent to Siberia for more than three centuries; millions of people, in total, were deported there. Due to its remoteness and severe weather conditions 'Russian Australia' was one huge prison, escape from where was almost impossible and very dangerous not only because of the chase, but because of the Siberian killing frosts, unimaginably long distances, bounty-hunting natives, deep forests and wild animals. Another reason for establishing punishment by exile was the desire of society to banish still cruel and barbarous criminal code of XVII century according to which criminals had been punished by amputation of their limbs, being bastionadoed, and being branded with hot iron. Exile was quick and easy method of getting them out of the way. The punishments, however, didn't become more humane. They just began to happen far away from where most of the people could see them. Before making Siberia place of exile criminals died from being tortured in Moscow; after they died from the hard, exhausting work, cold winters, and diseases in Siberia. Although originally applied as a corporal punishment, exile can be viewed as a means of population and developing the colony. Government needed people to work in Siberian mines and to build roads, and penal servitude began to replace long prison terms, while list of offences meriting exile steadily lengthened to include even vagrancy, fortune-telling, wife-beating, debts, accidentally starting a fire or drunkenness. In 1754 death penalty was abolished for some years and replaced with exile at hard labour. Convoy to Siberia Until the middle of the XIX century, most of the convicts had to walk to the place of their exile from their homes. Often the journey took years--the distances walked measured thousands of kilometres. They walked from etape (transit prison) to etape. Until the beginning of XVIII century there was almost no long-range planning and even supervision of exiles was extremely negligent. Convicts had to beg their way because there was...

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Uploaded by:   Admin

Date:   04/26/2000

Category:   Russian History

Length:   6 pages (1,431 words)

Views:   2575

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