The Defiant Life of Vera Figner: Surviving the Russian Revolution

TitleThe Defiant Life of Vera Figner: Surviving the Russian Revolution
Publication TypeBook
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsHartnett, Lynne Ann
Number of Pages324
PublisherIndiana University Press

This biography tells the dramatic story of Vera Figner (1852-1942), a Russian noblewoman turned revolutionary terrorist. Born in 1852 in the last years of serfdom, Vera Figner came of age as Imperial Russian society was being rocked by the massive upheaval that culminated in the Bolshevik revolution of 1917. At first a champion of populist causes and women's higher education, Figner later became a leader of the terrorist party the People's Will and was an accomplice in the assassination of Tsar Alexander II in 1881. Drawing on archival research and readings of Figner's copious memoirs, the author reveals how Figner survived the Bolshevik revolution and Stalin's Great Purges and died a lionized revolutionary legend as the Nazis bore down on Moscow in 1942.

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