January/February 2018 Current Moscow Time: 19:57:30
24 February 2018


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


History

The past is prologue.

Resilience: The Book!
Resilience: The Book!

Today, we officially put to print the book for our Children of 1917 project: Resilience: Life Stories of Centenarians Born in the Year of Revolution.

Tags: publishing, children of 1917, centenarians
Photography, Kachka & Spies
Photography, Kachka & Spies

Photography, food and spies comprise this week's Three Best Reads. We travel to Vilnius, Brooklyn, and Washington, DC, to consider wagging tongues, boiled tongues, and an overlooked photographer.

Tags: khrushchev, espionage, photography, russian cuisine
First Love
First Love

On the importance of coffee, academicians, a museum, a rooster, the harvesting of turf, and collectivization. Oh, and Novosibirsk.

Tags: novosibirsk, village life, children of 1917, 1917
Music Defeats War
Music Defeats War

When Shostakovich's Seventh Symphony was performed from besieged Leningrad on August 9, 1942, music suspended the horrors of war.

Tags: shostakovich, world war ii, leningrad, music
Old Fears
Old Fears

It was with mixed feelings of bitter guilt and disgust, overcome with shameful and cowardly thoughts, that I joined the Children of 1917 project.

Tags: children of 1917
Catherine Seizes Power
Catherine Seizes Power

On June 28, 1762, Catherine (born Sofia Frederika Augusta), the German wife of a weakened tsar, seized Russian throne. She soon earned the appellation "the Great."

Tags: tsarism, history, Catherine the Great
Why Invading Russia was Hitler's Downfall
Why Invading Russia was Hitler's Downfall

June 22nd marks the 76th anniversary of Operation Barbarossa, the Nazi invasion of Russia that changed the course of WWII and, perhaps, history itself.

Tags: russia, soviet union, WWII, World War, Hitler, nazi germany, Barbarossa, napoleon, great patriotic war
"Tear Down This Wall!"
"Tear Down This Wall!"

Thirty years ago today, US President Ronald Reagan challenged Soviet General Secretary Mikhail Gorbachev to tear down the Berlin Wall. Two years later, the wall came down after a German bureaucrat misspoke.

Tags: gorbachev, reagan, berlin wall
7 Banned Films from the 1960s
7 Banned Films from the 1960s

Where we discuss seven outstanding Soviet movies from the 1960s dealing with rural Russia, humaneness, and the 50th anniversary of the October Revolution that, instead of contributing to the revolution’s legacy, gathered dust for decades.

Tags: cinematography, 1960s, film
Final Diary Entries Before Arrest
Final Diary Entries Before Arrest

In cooperation with the “Lived” Project, Arzamas selected personal diary entries written immediately before their authors were arrested during the Great Terror. Almost all of these diaries were kept in the FSB Archive – the principal source of information for historians working on the events of 1937 – 1938.

Tags: 1930s, purges, camps, diaries, gulag
How to Properly Accept Bribes
How to Properly Accept Bribes

This is a short extract from a satirical book published in 1837, from which we learn: what sorts of bribes there are; why it is better to take a bribe during lunch; why gaudy is better than a bullfinch; the language in which one should speak of bribes; and how to avoid punishment for receiving bribes.

Tags: history, corruption, business, bribes
Saints Cyril and Methodius
Saints Cyril and Methodius

A few words about two brothers who rejected their family's wealth and became known as the Apostles of the Slavs. They never visited Russia, but they translated the Gospel into Slavonic.

Tags: religion, cyril, methodius, orthodoxy
Teffi: The Best Russian Writer You May Not Have Heard Of
Teffi: The Best Russian Writer You May Not Have Heard Of

Known as a female Chekhov and skilled at painting the human condition as hilarious and hideous in one stroke, Teffi is a little-known author you should get to know. 

Tags: Bolshevik, Satire, Literature, Teffi, Russia
The Other Catherine: 7 Facts About Russia's First Empress
The Other Catherine: 7 Facts About Russia's First Empress

Catherine I held the title of Empress 40 years before her more famous, “Great” namesake. As the first woman to rule Russia, she had great qualities of her own.

Tags: imperial russia, petrine russia, peter the great, Catherine I, Russia
Revolution for Tiny Tots
Revolution for Tiny Tots

“It was a lot of fun during the Rivolushun. And I won’t never forget the Russian Rivolushun.” In which we look at the 1917 revolution through the eyes of schoolchildren at the time.

Tags: revolution, children, 1917
1741: The Year Russia Discovered America
1741: The Year Russia Discovered America

You probably know that Alaska was bought from Russia well over 100 years ago. But do you know why Russia claimed the territory in the first place? Hint: who doesn't love a fur coat?

Tags: russia, united states, alaska, colonization
Meet Four Russian Centenarians
Meet Four Russian Centenarians

One hundred years ago, in 1917, Russia was wracked by revolution, famine, foreign war, and domestic unrest. And yet, throughout 1917, babies were born, lives were started. 

Tags: history, women, 1917
Who Invented the Ancient Slavic Gods, and Why?
Who Invented the Ancient Slavic Gods, and Why?

How it was that in the eighteenth century Russian mythology was trumped-up in the Western manner? Who wanted it? And where did we get Lel, Yarilo and Zimtserla? We explain everything you'd want to know about Russian fakelore.

Tags: paganism, religion, history, slavs, mythology
Tomsk
Tomsk

Vladimir Dudarev takes us to Siberia's wooden architecture and university capital, Tomsk.

International Women's Day: A Look Back
International Women's Day: A Look Back

Tired of having to do Valentine's Day and Mother's Day separately? Try it the Russian way and combine them into International Women's Day! A closer look at this convenient holiday's socialist origins and not-so-socialist present form.

Tags: russia, holiday, women, socialism