Gender and Policing in Soviet West Ukraine, 1944–1948

TitleGender and Policing in Soviet West Ukraine, 1944–1948
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2001
AuthorsBurds, Jeffrey
JournalCahiers du Monde russe

Drawing from research in archives in Moscow, Kiev, and Lviv, this article examines the role of gender in the Soviet counterinsurgency in western Ukraine during and after World War II. By spring 1944 the Ukrainian Insurrection Army (UPA) and the Organization of Ukrainian Nationalists (OUN) became increasingly dependent on women and girls to perform duties vital to the Ukrainian nationalist rebels. In response, the Soviet secret police adapted counterinsurgency strategies to target the female element in the anti-Soviet underground. Soviet 'agentura,' or informants' networks, were increasingly focused on women recruits, even as special tactics were developed to terrorize women rebels. Soviet police tactics had the effect not only of terrorizing Ukrainian women in gender-specific ways, but they also provoked a brutal reaction from within the Ukrainian underground itself, so that moskal'ki - ethnic Ukrainian women "collaborators" - became the targets of reprisals carried out by special underground rebel punitive units.

Entry by GWC Assistants / Work by GWC Assistants : 

Type of Literature:

Time Period: