The Columbia University Harriman Institute is hosting an online lecture presented by Associate Professor Maria Cristina Galmarini-Kabala (William & Mary): "The Work of Care in Russia: Maria Cristina Galmarini-Kabala."
The Soviet system of care and social protection involved both the distribution of monetary help through the Pensioning Department of the Commissariat (later Ministry) of Social Assistance and the implementation of social policies in such diverse fields as education, health care, family life, housing, and employment. In this talk, she will introduce four specific service agencies: the Medico-Pedagogical Station, the Mother and Infant Department, and the Societies of the Blind and the Deaf. After having clarified their institutional standing within the system of Soviet welfare in the post-revolutionary and Stalinist period, she will analyze how the people working in these organizations constructed their charges and how their constructions compared with Soviet bureaucrats’ vision of “the pensioner.” The figure of the “striving disabled,” which took shape precisely at this time, was of particular significance in informing future understandings of care work, activism, and proper disabled subjectivity.
The link to register is available at: https://harriman.columbia.edu/event/work-of-care-maria-galmarini-kabala/.
This lecture is the first in a new series The Work of Care in Russia organized by RSW Research Affiliate and Disability Studies Working Group member Svetlana Borodina. This series will explore how Soviet and post-Soviet Russian care workers have been sustaining lives and why sometimes their efforts hurt rather than heal. The RSW is excited to be a co-sponsor of this new series!