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Tales of Old Odessa
Crime and Civility in a City of Thieves
Roshanna P. Sylvester
"A fascinating analysis of the impact of modernity upon the city of Odessa."—Journal of Modern History
"A colorful read that contributes richly to the literature on Jewish culture in late imperial Russia."—American Historical Review
"Engaging ... fillied with colorful characters and fascinating stories. [Sylvester's] analysis is astute and revealing."—Slavic Review
Odessa—founded by Catherine the Great, who insisted that her port on the Black Sea be named in the feminine—earned its reputation for vibrancy. Sophisticated yet untamed, lively but dangerous, Russia’s warm water port for trade flirted coquettishly with the West. By the beginning of the twentieth century, the city had become a volatile modern metropolis with an ethnically diverse population and a growing middle class. Known as the “little Paris” of the tsarist empire, Odessa was distinctly un-Russian in manner and disposition and strikingly unlike other imperial cities.
(2005) 254 pp., illus.
Roshanna P. Sylvester is Associate Professor of History at DePaul University in Chicago.
Table of Contents
Introduction—The Modern Odessan
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