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Thinking Allowed - Russian women prisoners

Updated Wednesday 30th January 2013

In the light of Pussy Riot's imprisonment, Thinking Allowed looks at research on Russia's distinctive penal geography

The sociologist Judith Pallot talks to Laurie Taylor about a study based on extensive interviews with prisoners and officers in different regions of Russia. She finds that the vast distances between prisons and womens' homes imposes harsh penalties on women and their families. They're joined by the criminologist, Dr Sharon Shalev.

Also 'Bolt Wars': Lisa Bogardus spent 16 months researching and observing the rock climbing world. She describes a battle for the cliffs in which climbers clash about the need to reduce risk and danger.

Read an article from a Moscow based art critic on the Pussy Riot case below as well as more content and free learning.

Thinking Allowed is on BBC Radio 4 on Wednesdays at 4.00pm and repeated on Monday mornings at 12.15am. Full transmission details, and listen again links, can be found on


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