"Waiting to Die? Life for the Elderly in Late Imperial Russian Villages" with Sarah Badcock, University of Nottingham, UK


Location: 1050 Jenkins Nanovic Halls

Sarah Badcock Banner
Sarah Badcock (left) and Ilya Repin, ‘Watchman Yefimov’ (1870, Tretiakov gallery) by Wikimedia Commons (right).

Sarah Badcock, F.R.Hist.S.
Professor of Modern History and Director of Research, School of Humanities, University of Nottingham

The lecture is free and open to the public.

About the Lecture

Elderly men and women are prominent in our imaginings of Russian rural spaces, dispensing advice, sitting on street corners, and dominating households. Despite this, life for older people has not attracted significant scholarly attention in the pre-revolutionary Russian context. This paper offers some preliminary insights into lived experience for the elderly and seeks to place these experiences in a broader comparative picture of older people’s lives in other countries at the turn of the century. I will argue that in the Russian context, the status and care of the elderly was often framed by their capacity to work. Those elderly people who were no longer able to work were often left ‘waiting to die’.

About the Speaker

Sarah Badcock is Professor of Modern History at the University of Nottingham. She is the author of multiple books and articles on various aspects of late Imperial Russian history. Her most recent book, A prison without walls? Eastern Siberian exile in the last years of Tsarism (Oxford University Press, 2016) won the BASEES Women’s Forum Prize in 2018, awarded by the British Association for Slavonic and East European Studies. She spent several years researching ordinary people’s experiences of the Russian revolution. This research culminated in the book published by Cambridge University Press in 2007, Politics and the People in Revolutionary Russia; A provincial history.