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Sep/Oct 2015 Current Moscow Time: 07:43:17
10 October 2015

  The world’s biggest country, in a magazine. Since 1956.

Russian Life: Sep/Oct 2015

Sep/Oct 2015

Cover: Mikhail Cheryomkin

7: Cleansing Fire The Editors
Moscow’s attack on all things foreign went into overdrive this summer as the Kremlin ordered destruction of embargoed food at the border.

16: Watch This The Editors
The kerfuffle over Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov's watch reached a fever pitch in August. They he went on his honeymoon on an expensive yacht...

19: Nobel Passions Tamara Eidelman
For the people of the Russian Empire, the Soviet Union, or the Russian Federation, it has always been exceptionally important who among their fellow citizens was awarded a Nobel Prize and who was not. We look back at 100 years of awards.
:: Translation by Nora Favorov


22: 1815: The Holy Alliance Tamara Eidelman
The idea of a Holy Alliance was dear to Alexander’s religious heart. He believed that God would protect legitimate rulers. The Holy Alliance did not quite work out that way.
:: Translation by Nora Favorov


23: Two Dmitrys and a Marina Tamara Eidelman
For lovers of Russian literature, Marina Mniszech is more literary figment than historical figure. Yet her life was truly interesting, from any angle.
:: Translation by Nora Favorov


24: 1715: Bruce's Calendar Tamara Eidelman
On September 17, 1715, in Moscow’s Sukharev Tower, home to the School of Mathematics and Navigation, an unusual book was put on public display: a calendar.
:: Translation by Nora Favorov


26: Say What? Michelle A. Berdy
Every once in a while someone asks me how to translate a particular phrase, and my answer is not that it can’t be translated or that it is hard to translate, but that there’s no point in translating it: We just don’t say it that way.
:: Illustrations/Images by Victor Bogorad

Survival Russian

28: Beyond the World of the Living Mikhail Cheryomkin
When he was a child, the author often overheard the hushed conversations of adults alluding to concentration camps in Yakutia. When he grew up, he went in search of them.
:: Translation by Paul E. Richardson and Nora Favorov


34: Himalayan Dreams Marina Marshenkulova
Why are there so many Russian expats in India? Why do they come here and why, more importantly, do they stay?

42: Soviet Bus Stops Christopher Herwig
Photographer Christopher Herwig traveled the length and breadth of the Soviet empire, and brought back stunning images of bus stops.
:: Illustrations/Images by Christopher Herwig


46: Pivot to the Celestial Empire Eugenia Kuznetsova
Russia is seeing a boom in tourism from China. Why is that, and what does it mean?

52: Prose of the Mountains Aleksandre Qazbegi
A section of three excerpts from the Central European Press' new translation of the works of Aleksandre Qazbegi, which vividly bring back the spirit and feel of the Caucasus of the 19th century.
:: Translation by Rebecca Gould


58: How the Upper Crust Dined Darra Goldstein
The nineteenth-century St. Petersburg aristocrat Petr Pavlovich Durnovo regularly entertained at his mansion on the city’s fashionable English Embankment. Thanks to a trove of his dinner menus from 1857-1858, we can get a good sense of the foods that the mid-century aristocracy enjoyed.
:: Illustrations/Images by Alexander Sherstobitov


61: Tsars, War and Komiks Paul E. Richardson
Books we liked, including Dominc Lieven's "The End of Tsarist Russia," Anthony Marra's "The Tsar of Love and Techno," Denise Youngblood's "Bondarchuk's War and Peace," and Jose Alaniz's "Komiks: Comic Art in Russia."
Under Review

64: Poke This The Editors
You really have to be careful who you pose for a selfie with. Unless, of course that's what you meant to do.