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JAAR > 2018
9780993191121 9780993191121_01 9780993191121_02 9780993191121_03
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Russian Criminal Tattoos & Playing Cards

ISBN: 9780993191121 (HB - E)

This book explains the importance of playing cards in Russian criminal culture. Prohibited by the prison authorities, the handmade decks are constructed from innocuous materials procured from the everyday routine of prison life. During construction both the cards and their designs are adroitly manipulated so they can be 'read'. Once complete the 'virtuoso' player prowls the prison, searching for a suitable victim. This complete process is described here for the first time. Extensive diagrams show how the cards are made, while decks of actual prison cards are reproduced in facsimile. The book also features a further 160 photographs from the Arkady Bronnikov collection, all accompanied by text that reveals the connection between the criminal hierarchy, tattoos and playing cards.

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