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Pashukanis, Evgeny B. (1891–1937)

Evgeny Bronislavovich Pashukanis arose after the 1917 Russian Revolution to reach a prominent role in theorizing Marxist law in the 1920s and 1930s. His commodity-exchange theory of law was the capstone of his thinking. His interpretation of Marxist law was to have a major impact in the West in the late 1970s and 1980s in theorizing about structural Marxism. This came to replace the instrumental Marxist theory of the 1960s and 1970s that was so prominent in various disciplines.

Pashukanis's role as the most prominent theorizer in Russia in the 1920s and early 1930s ended in 1937 when the government branded him an enemy of the state and executed him. His reading of Karl Marx (1818–1883), that the “dictatorship of the proletariat” would “wither away,” was ...

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