Soviet religious samizdat as a powerful weapon of Soviet religious dissent : a comparative study of Baptist and Orthodox samizdat publications from the early 1960s to the late 1980s.




Seago, Larisa G.

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In the Soviet Union where government controlled every written and spoken word the sole way of communicating uncensored information was samizdat – a system of underground publication which existed in the Soviet Union from the early 1950s to the late 1980s. Soviet religious dissidents extensively used samizdat in their struggle for freedom of conscience. Many of their publications reached the West and soon became the sole source of truthful information about religious persecution in the Soviet Union. Baptist and Orthodox dissents contributed the most to Soviet religious samizdat. This study analyzes and describes samizdat publications produced by these denominations. It explores the two groups’ forms of organizational efforts and their use of samizdat. It demonstrates that while Orthodox dissent produced a greater variety of samizdat publications, Baptist dissent turned it into a powerful weapon in its struggle for religious freedom.



Soviet samizdat., Soviet religious dissent., Religious persecution in the Soviet Union., Freedom of religion in the Soviet Union.