Subverting Communism in Romania
Subverting Communism in Romania explores the role of law in everyday life and as a mechanism for social change during early communism in Romania. Mihaela Serban focuses on the regime’s attempts to extinguish private property in housing through housing nationalization and expropriation. This study of early communist law illustrates that law is never just an instrument of state power, particularly over the long term and from a ground up perspective. Even during its most totalitarian phase, communist law enjoyed a certain level of autonomy at the most granular level and consequently was simultaneously a space of state power and resistance to power. The book draws from archives recently made available in Romania, which have opened up new perspectives for understanding a mundane yet crucial part of the modern human experience: one’s home and the institution of private property that often sustains it.