Project Overview

Everyday Law, Russia: 1693-1730

Faculty Sponsor

Kira Stevens (




It is exceedingly rare to find a run of cases from any law court in 17th and 18th century Russia. As a result, there is a lack of precise information about such things as the role of women in the courts, the difference in rank between plaintiff and defendant, who initiated cases, and a variety of other basic information. I currently have access to descriptions of a great cases from a single Moscow police court; I should like help in analyzing this data (helping to develop codes, coding and analyzing quantitative material) to discover how Russian courts of this era normally worked, what kinds of cases they handled, and to answer other basic questions. Some of the cases are surprising, interesting, even funny (and then there is the grim side!)

Student Qualifications

Above all, the ability to read and understand 19th century Russian handwriting. Beyond that, students will learn a great deal about coding (as we work together to expand the existing categories) and the preparation of research questions and analysis.

Number of Student Researchers

2 students

Project Length

9 weeks

Applications open on 01/15/2017 and close on 02/07/2017

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If you have questions, please contact Karyn Belanger (