Values of Lithuanian Women Deportees in Their Life Histories

  • Rasa Račiūnaitė-Paužuolienė
  • Gerda Matusevičienė
Keywords: Lithuanian women deportees, life histories, values


This article reviews the life histories told by Lithuanian women deportees from the middle of the twentieth to the twenty-first century. It analyzes the values of women deportees in ethnic, religious, and humanistic aspects. The work is based on life histories recorded during ethnographic fieldwork and represents the problem of displacement. The following tasks were undertaken: (1) to determine the values of women deportees in their youth, maturity, and old age; (2) to explore the continuity of humanistic, national, and religious values in the younger generation. The study reveals that Lithuanian women deportees suffered physical, psychological, and spiritual traumas that laid the foundations for their values. The analysis of life histories reveals that experiences that the Lithuanian women gained in Siberia formed new human values: perseverance, purposefulness, and empathy. On the one hand, these features played a role in shaping the personalities of the mature women. In general terms, life in exile had negative consequences for the personalities of the deported women leaving them with the feeling of isolation and the inferiority complex.