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A Life Under Russian Serfdom
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This is a translation of one of the very few Russian serfs' memoirs. Savva Purlevskii recollects his life in Russian serfdom and the lives of his grandparents, parents, and fellow villagers. He describes family communal life and the serfs' daily interaction with landlords and authorities. Purlevskii came from an initially prosperous family that later became impoverished. Early in his childhood, he lost his father. Purlevskii did not have a chance to gain a formal education. He lived under serfdom until 1831 when at the age of 30, he escaped his servitude.
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Table of Contents

List of Illustrations; Notes on the Translation; Preface; Introduction; Our Village, Its Inhabitants and Owners; My Grandfather; Myself, My Childhood, and My Family; And My Adult Life Began.; My Marriage, My Landlord, My Trade, and Other Things; Life outside the Village Observed; The Bitterness of Serfdom Realized; My Activities in Estate Life; My Future Fate Resolved; Epilogue

About the Author

Boris B. Gorshkov teaches world history at Kennesaw State University. He is author of many articles on the Russian pre-emancipation peasantry and child labor, including "Democratizing Habermas: Peasant Public Sphere in Pre-Reform Russia," Canadian American Slavic Studies Special Issue (Fall 2004); "Factory Children" in New Labor History, ed. Michael Melancon and Alice Pate (Bloomington, 2002); "Serfs on the Move," Kritika 1 (Fall 2000); and "Serfdom in Eastern Europe" in Encyclopedia of European Social History, ed. Peter N Stearns 6 volumes (New York, 2001)

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