Geboren in Tschimkent, Kasachstan
Studium der Internationalen Beziehungen und der Soziologie an der American University – Central Asia, Bishkek, Kirgistan. Bachelorarbeit zum Thema "Memory, Culture and Symbolism in Oral History of Riots of 1967 in Chimkent and Frunze"
Studium des Faches Kultur- und Sozialgeschichte an der University of Essex, GB. Thema der Masterarbeit: "Soviet industrialization in Central Asia: mining, living and changing in Ak-Tyuz"
Stipendiatin des Stipendienprogrammes des Berliner Abgeordnetenhauses. Forschungsthema: Lebensgeschichten von Deutschen und Juden aus der ehemaligen Sowjetunion in Berlin
Humanities Fellow im Aga Khan Humanities Project der University of Central Asia, Tadschikistan
seit November 2008
Drittmittelbeschäftigte am Lehrstuhl für Geschichte Osteuropas (im Rahmen des von der Volkswagen-Stiftung finanzierten Projekts "'Auf der Flucht vor der Justiz – auf der Suche nach Gerechtigkeit'. Sowjetische Rechtsexperten beim Aufbau des Justizwesens in Tadschikistan, 1924-41")
Dissertation/Forschungsprojekt: "'Bringing Justice': Institualization of the Soviet judicial system in the Tajik A/SSR in 1920s - 1930s"
The proposed study will explore the ways in which Soviet legal professionals, both local and expatriate, understood and communicated the legal field as well as their roles within it in the newly formed Tajik (Autonomous) Soviet Socialist Republic in concrete local settings through the process of their interpretation, enforcement and (dis)regard of laws. This topic is particularly relevant because very little is known about the ways in which the early Soviet state enforced its policies on populations with very different legal traditions that had only been marginally affected by Tsarist presence in preceding decades (1). This study will examine how legal professionals undertook "modern development": the making of the nation-state and Soviet citizenry in Soviet Union’s Asian periphery.
Legal field presents a powerful and unique area for studying society’s past. It is a kind of communication where groups from various backgrounds, professions and aims gather, whether upon their will or not, to communicate "danger", "virtue", "justice", "punishment", put shortly, their values and agency in various contexts. Legal communication also bares consequences, which can reveal societal struggles as well as compromises, transformation of values, construction of knowledge and power structures. The proposed research aims to illuminate on both structural and cultural transformation of society and examine the role of individuals behind this process.
The Bolshevik administration had to rely heavily on expatriate personnel mostly from Soviet Russia and Ukraine to institute Soviet courts and the idea of the "revolutionary proletarian justice". Those had to bring up the new generation of local jurists and make the new Soviet legal system legitimate among the local population. The more concrete question this study will attempt to answer is: How did the expatriate legal professionals use these powers to institute the state and how was this perceived and received by local colleagues and population? This question will be studied around four issues: strategies of local population, local and expatriate legal professionals 1) to adapt and legitimize foreign system of law to local settings; 2) to satisfy and/or dispute the "center" and other governmental agencies during this process 3) during indigenization and collectivization campaigns.
The proposed study will be based on archival materials of court trials, petitions, documented discussions of legal statues and their implementation by legal professionals among themselves and with other government representatives that will be gathered in Dushanbe, Tashkent and Moscow. Micro history, which is still a new method that has not been duly used by historians of the Soviet past, will be one used to reconstruct some of the court trials that took place in Soviet Tajikistan and provide interpretation of how various actors used legal systems and laws and how this has influenced their understandings of laws and legal structures, the concept of justice and the concept of the state.
(1) Although there is a growing body of literature on Soviet legal history, little attention has been paid to the understandings, acceptances and uses of those both by legal professionals and the local population in Soviet Central Asia. E.g. Solomon, Peter. Reforming Justice in Russia, 1864-1996: Power, Culture, and the Limits of Legal Order, New York: Armonk, 1997; Baberowski, Jörg. Autokratie und Justiz. Zum Verhaeltnis von Rechtsstaatlichkeit und Rueckstaendigkeit im ausgehenden Zarenreich 1864-1914, Frakfurt/Main. 1996; Pomeranz, W.E. "Justice from the Underground: The History of the Underground Advokatura" in Russian Review 52, 1993; Martin, V. "Nomadic Custom, Imperial Crime" in Brower D & Lazzerini, E. From Russia’s Orient. Imperial Borderlands and Peoples, 1700 – 1917, Bloomington 1997; Neuberger, J "Popular Legal Cultures. The St. Petersburg Mirovoi Sud" in Ben Eklof et al from Russia’s Great Reforms, 1855-1881, Bloomington and Indianapolis 1994.
"Memories of Riots of 1967 in Chimkent, Kazakh SSR and Frunze, Kirghiz SSR", in: Jahrbuch für Historische Kommunismusforschung, März 2007.
"Legal and 'Other Deaths' in Kyrgyzstan: A/Legal Cultural of Capital Punishment", in: Austin Sarat (Hg.), Cultural lives of Capital Punishment. Worldwide Perspectives, Stanford University Press 2005.
"Vom Geist der Gesetze in Zentralasien", WeltTrends Nr. 31, Potsdam, Sommer 2001.