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“Land der Tränen”: Sibirien als narrativer Raum in der Verbannungs- und Gulagliteratur

Author(s): Stolberg, Eva-Maria

Journal: Journal of New Frontiers in Spatial Concepts
ISSN 1868-6648

Volume: 2011;
Issue: 03;
Start page: 63;
Date: 2011;
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Keywords: Foucault | Exile and punishment as spatial concept | The history of Siberia | Modern state-building in Russia/USSR

This article highlights the historical and literary aspects of exile and punishment as a formative element in the spatial concept of Russian and Soviet empire-building. Using Siberia as a landscape of suffering, it em-pirically discusses the Foucaultian discourse on power and discipline of the modern state. It shows the continuity of the significance of punishment in Russian history in the decisive period of state formation in the nineteenth and twentieth century. Moreover, the attempt of the Russian state to modernize itself with violent measures provoked intellectual, especially literary dissension with a lasting impact on Russian historical memory. Prisons and Gulag labor camps in remote Siberia impose critical reflections on the development of a civil society.

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