Int'l Relations

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Reset, Shmeeset
September 01, 2013

Reset, Shmeeset

By Paul E. Richardson

It would be an understatement to say US-Russian relations have hit a low point. Not a Cuban Missile Crisis or even a 1980 Olympic Boycott sort of low point. More like a US bombing of Belgrade or Russian sleeper spies discovered in America sort of low point.

1983: The Scariest Year
March 04, 2013

1983: The Scariest Year

By Paul E. Richardson

Ambassador Jack Matlock had a front row seat for the final days of the US-Soviet Cold War and the collapse of the USSR. While working on his article, 1983: The Scariest Year (Mar/Apr 2013), Russian Life Publisher Paul Richardson conducted an email interview with Matlock, which is produced here in its entirety.

Romney = Russian for
September 14, 2012

Romney = Russian for "Cold Warrior"

By Paul E. Richardson

 

By launching the flabby Cold War trope that Russia is our "geopolitical adversary," Mitt Romney has exhibited yet another symptom of foot-in-mouth disease on foreign policy...

 
On PBS this Month: The Great Famine
April 01, 2011

On PBS this Month: The Great Famine

By Paul E. Richardson

Today, Herbert Hoover – the 31st president of the United States (1929-1933) – is probably most associated with the onset and deepening of the Great Depression. Few know that prior to his presidency he was a successful international mining engineer (and had some lucrative investments in Russia before the Revolution), and later headed up the ARA (American Relief Administration), designed to deliver needed foreign aid to Belgium in the aftermath of World War I. 

Freedom Fries
November 09, 2009

Freedom Fries

By Paul E. Richardson

I will forever associate the fall of the Berlin Wall with french fries. In 1989, my wife and I were living and working in Moscow. Our friend Bob was apartment-sitting in the American embassy complex; and on November 9 he invited us over for dinner...

The Bogeyman
August 12, 2009

The Bogeyman

By Paul E. Richardson

When it comes to bogeymen, China, Cuba, even North Korea can't hold a candle to old Mother Russia. This week, as tempers flared and theatrical protests abounded around health care, a woman offered this irrational take on proposed reforms at a town hall meeting ...

From Mikhail to Michael
July 13, 2009

From Mikhail to Michael

By Paul E. Richardson

Four years ago, in August 2005, then Senator Barack Obama was detained for three hours at a Siberian airport. Obama, with Senator Dick Lugar, was on a US delegation touring nuclear warhead storage and disposal sites. Russian border guards insisted on searching the delegation's plane. The senators refused...

 

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EVENTS FOR RUSSOPHILES

Atomic Alert!: Confronting
June 28, 2021 to August 08, 2021

Atomic Alert!: Confronting "The Bomb" in the New Atomic Age

The Museum of Russian Icons | Clinton, MA

The exhibition explores the U.S. government’s Cold War era efforts, in the 1950s, to educate Americans about what to do before an atomic attack, how to react to a sudden blinding flash, and what action to take in the aftermath of a catastrophic blast.

A Few of Our Books

The Best of Russian Life

The Best of Russian Life

We culled through 15 years of Russian Life to select readers’ and editors’ favorite stories and biographies for inclusion in a special two-volume collection. Totalling over 1100 pages, these two volumes encompass some of the best writing we have published over the last two decades, and include the most timeless stories and biographies – those that can be read again and again.
Fearful Majesty

Fearful Majesty

This acclaimed biography of one of Russia’s most important and tyrannical rulers is not only a rich, readable biography, it is also surprisingly timely, revealing how many of the issues Russia faces today have their roots in Ivan’s reign.
93 Untranslatable Russian Words

93 Untranslatable Russian Words

Every language has concepts, ideas, words and idioms that are nearly impossible to translate into another language. This book looks at nearly 100 such Russian words and offers paths to their understanding and translation by way of examples from literature and everyday life. Difficult to translate words and concepts are introduced with dictionary definitions, then elucidated with citations from literature, speech and prose, helping the student of Russian comprehend the word/concept in context.
Moscow and Muscovites

Moscow and Muscovites

Vladimir Gilyarovsky's classic portrait of the Russian capital is one of Russians’ most beloved books. Yet it has never before been translated into English. Until now! It is a spectactular verbal pastiche: conversation, from gutter gibberish to the drawing room; oratory, from illiterates to aristocrats; prose, from boilerplate to Tolstoy; poetry, from earthy humor to Pushkin. 
Maria's War: A Soldier's Autobiography

Maria's War: A Soldier's Autobiography

This astonishingly gripping autobiography by the founder of the Russian Women’s Death Battallion in World War I is an eye-opening documentary of life before, during and after the Bolshevik Revolution.
The Spine of Russia

The Spine of Russia

This coffee table book is the photographic journal of an epic 6000-kilometer road trip. The book includes over 200 compelling images of Russians and Russian places met along the way, plus a dozen texts (in both English and Russian) on everything from business to education, from roads to fools.
Stargorod: A Novel in Many Voices

Stargorod: A Novel in Many Voices

Stargorod is a mid-sized provincial city that exists only in Russian metaphorical space. It has its roots in Gogol, and Ilf and Petrov, and is a place far from Moscow, but close to Russian hearts. It is a place of mystery and normality, of provincial innocence and Black Earth wisdom. Strange, inexplicable things happen in Stargorod. So do good things. And bad things. A lot like life everywhere, one might say. Only with a heavy dose of vodka, longing and mystery.
The Latchkey Murders

The Latchkey Murders

Senior Lieutenant Pavel Matyushkin is back on the case in this prequel to the popular mystery Murder at the Dacha, in which a serial killer is on the loose in Khrushchev’s Moscow...
Jews in Service to the Tsar

Jews in Service to the Tsar

Benjamin Disraeli advised, “Read no history: nothing but biography, for that is life without theory.” With Jews in Service to the Tsar, Lev Berdnikov offers us 28 biographies spanning five centuries of Russian Jewish history, and each portrait opens a new window onto the history of Eastern Europe’s Jews, illuminating dark corners and challenging widely-held conceptions about the role of Jews in Russian history.
Faith & Humor: Notes from Muscovy

Faith & Humor: Notes from Muscovy

A book that dares to explore the humanity of priests and pilgrims, saints and sinners, Faith & Humor has been both a runaway bestseller in Russia and the focus of heated controversy – as often happens when a thoughtful writer takes on sacred cows. The stories, aphorisms, anecdotes, dialogues and adventures in this volume comprise an encyclopedia of modern Russian Orthodoxy, and thereby of Russian life.

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