Book

Marriage, Property, and Law in Late Imperial Russia

William G. Wagner

Published in print October 1994 | ISBN: 9780198204473
Published online October 2011 | e-ISBN: 9780191676291 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198204473.001.0001

Series: Oxford Historical Monographs

Marriage, Property, and Law in Late Imperial Russia

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This book provides a systematic study of civil law in late Imperial Russia. It shows that efforts to adjust family, property, and inheritance law to changing social and economic conditions often became intertwined with attempts to shape society in accordance with competing ideological ideals. Through a restructuring of the family's legal basis, members of the growing educated and professional strata of society in particular endeavoured to promote conflicting conceptions of authority, individuality, gender, and law. Legal reform also served for members of the emerging legal and medical professions as a way to establish their authority, often at the expense of the state administration and the Orthodox Church. Civil law in late Imperial Russia therefore constituted both an important medium for ideological redefinition and a field of battle for those seeking to reform, to overthrow, or to defend the ancient regime. Because this battle extended into the state bureaucracy, legislative change proved extremely difficult. Newly empowered by the 1864 judicial reform, the judiciary responded to legislative inaction by not merely adapting the law, but also by promoting an ideal of the family whose values and principles challenged those underlying the autocracy.

Keywords: marriage; property; law; Imperial Russia; civil law; ideology; judicial reform; family

Book.  428 pages. 

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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Table of Contents

Introduction in Marriage, Property, and Law in Late Imperial Russia

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New Men, New Courts, and Old Laws in Marriage, Property, and Law in Late Imperial Russia

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Traditional Law: The Patriarchal Family and Pressures for Change in Marriage, Property, and Law in Late Imperial Russia

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Jurists' Critique: Evolution of the Affective Family in Marriage, Property, and Law in Late Imperial Russia

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The Limits of Legislative Revision in Marriage, Property, and Law in Late Imperial Russia

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The Possibilities of Judicial Revision in Marriage, Property, and Law in Late Imperial Russia

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Traditional Law: Patrimonial Property and Pressures for Change in Marriage, Property, and Law in Late Imperial Russia

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Jurists' Critique: The Ascendancy of Individual Ownership in Marriage, Property, and Law in Late Imperial Russia

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The Limits of Legislative Revision in Marriage, Property, and Law in Late Imperial Russia

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The Possibilities of Judicial Revision in Marriage, Property, and Law in Late Imperial Russia

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