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Women in Soviet Prisons

NCJ Number
H Celmina
Date Published
251 pages
The author chronicles her arrest, trial, and imprisonment in the KGB Checka (prison camp) in Riga, Latvia.
She recounts her arrest for possession of foreign magazines with intent of dissemination, her daily interrogation for 6 months, and her imprisonment in a strict corrective labor camp between 1962-1966. She highlights her experiences both with the system and with other inmates during this time, which included 6 months of solitary confinement and a regime of constant interrogation, humiliation, and hunger. Relationships among Latvian agencies are discussed, as are the relationship between the Latvian bureaucracy and Moscow and its effect on the treatment of political prisoners. Day-to-day life in the prison is described, with an emphasis on the various crimes, experiences, and relationships of the women in the camp, including nuns and Jehovah's Witnesses, murderers, fortune tellers, communists, and guerilla fighters.