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Coping with Uncertainty

Petty Traders in Post-Soviet Russia

Kamil Wielecki

Petty trade helped vast numbers of people to survive the crisis faced by post-Soviet Russia. The book analyses how this survival technique was carried out in practice. On the basis of his fieldwork research, the author shows how people coped with rapid social change and places their activities within a context of government policies, migration flows and entrepreneurial strategies.
«This is an original work based on extensive fieldwork research. Wielecki skillfully intertwined «ethnographic meat» with «the bones of theory», which has resulted in a «flesh-and-blood» anthropology.»
Michał Buchowski
«This is an immensely insightful exploration of petty trade in post-Soviet Russia. The author laces his genuine ethnographic work in a coherent account of the concepts of uncertainty, embeddedness, and informal economy.»
Violetta Zentai
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Note on transliteration


I use the Romanization style for Russian set by the US Board on Geographic Names (BGN) and the Permanent Committee on Geographical Names (PCGN), known also as the British Standard. I adopted a simplified version of this style, rendering ë as yo and shortening the -iy and -yy endings to –y. For the soft sign ь I use the apostrophe ‘ and for the hard sign ъ the quotation mark “. As far as different styles of Romanization are in use, some names might occur in different versions, e.g. Radayev and Zinovyev might occur as Radaev and Zinoviev in bibliographical references. I make some exemptions from these rules for the sake of familiarity. For instance, instead of Gorbachyov and Gaydar, I write Gorbachev and Gaidar. ← 11 | 12 →

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