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Russia's Penal Colony in the Far East

A Translation of Vlas Doroshevich's "Sakhalin"

Vlas Doroshevich, Translated with an Introduction by Andrew A. Gentes
 

Russia's Penal Colony in the Far East

The first English language translation of the Russian journalist Vlas Doroshevich’s 1903 account of his visit to tsarist Russia’s largest penal colony, Sakhalin, in the north Pacific.

Imprint: Anthem Press
ISBN 9780857283917
July 2011 | 514 Pages | 229 x 152mm / 9 x 6 | 43+ images
 
PRICE:  £30.00  /  $49.50  Buy from Amazon.co.uk  Buy from Amazon.com
 
 
9780857283917

About This Book

'Offers a grim picture of the underworld of czarist Russia. Recommended.' —D. Balmuth, Skidmore College, ‘Choice’

'Andrew Gentes has done a masterful job of translating the “journalese” in which Doroshevich described the unique culture that prisoners created in the process of forging an existence from so baleful an environment. […]Doroshevich launched a career that made him the most influential journalist in pre-Revolutionary Russia from these vignettes, and Gentes’s translation makes evident why.' —‘The Russian Review’

‘Andrew Gentes has produced a largely fluent and readable translation. […] This is an important addition to the field, and not only the translator, but also the publisher, Anthem Press, deserve credit for bring it to an English language audience for the first time.’ —Sarah J. Young, ‘Slavonica’

‘Russia’s Penal Colony in the Far East: A Translation of Vlas Doroshevich’s “Sakhalin”’ is the first English language translation of the Russian journalist Vlas Doroshevich’s 1903 account of his visit to tsarist Russia’s largest penal colony, Sakhalin, in the north Pacific. Despite the publication of Anton Chekhov’s account of his visit to Sakhalin in 1890, many Russians remained unaware of the brutality and savagery of the 'devil island'. In 1897 Doroshevich, Russia’s most popular journalist, travelled to Sakhalin and spent three months touring the island, interviewing numerous prisoners and officials, and recording his impressions. The feuilletons he wired back to his publishers were eventually collected and published in book form in 1903, under the title 'Sakhalin' (Katorga).

Doroshevich’s book was enormously popular when it first appeared, and it continues to be published in Russia, as a historical record of the striking barbarity of late nineteenth century penal practices. Despite this popularity, it has never before been translated into English, and Doroshevich remains largely unknown outside Russia. This translation introduces English-language readers to an important writer and original stylist who defined journalistic practice during the years leading up to the 1917 Revolution, by way of a book which helps explain the causes for that revolution.

Readership: This will appeal to an academic audience of both experts and university students in the fields of Russian history, journalism, and criminal justice.

Author Information

Andrew A. Gentes is Lecturer in History at the University of Queensland.

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations; Introduction: On First Impressions and Lasting Choices, by Andrew A. Gentes; Glossary; Katorga: A Reporter’s Visit to the Sakhalin Penal Colony; Book One; Book Two; Recommended Readings