June 1996

Features in this Issue

The People's Will

Russia's June 16, 1996 presidential elections were a unique event in the country's history. For the first time, Russians elected their head of state in a one-person, one-vote election. In this article, we look back at Russian electoral history, before and during the Soviet era.

Hostage of the Revolution

After Lenin and Stalin, no personality was as venerated in the USSR as the writer Maxim Gorky, founder of socialist realism, who died 60 years ago this June (1996). Far from a pet of the socialist regime, Gorky, the "story petrel of the revolution," also condemned the revolution early on as a "cruel experiment" with the Russian people. Here we trace the story of his fascinating, often controversial life.

The Art of the Unknown

Ernst Neizvestny, one of Russia's greatest artists, staged a landmark exhibition this year in Moscow. Christina Ling tells his story, and provides insight into some of the work that most Russians are seeing for the first time.

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