Mar/Apr 2017 Current Moscow Time: 21:50:26
23 April 2017


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


Life

Covering everything from holidays and health to food, drink, humor and sports.

March 30, 2017
#Russiagate, Demos & Alaska
By The Editors

#Russiagate, Demos & Alaska

Continuing scandal, new demonstrations, a sesquicentenial and a linguistic smackdown. Just another week here at TWERF.

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Tags: russia, twitter, navalny, politics, kamchatka, alaska
March 27, 2017
March {Translation} Madness
By Paul E. Richardson & Olga Kuzmina

March {Translation} Madness

A random query led us down a rabbit hole to see how online translation engines are humming these days. Won't you join us?

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Tags: translation
March 8, 2017
International Women's Day: A Look Back
By Eugenia Sokolskaya

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.

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Tags: russia, holiday, women, socialism
February 15, 2017
Spies Like Them
By Research Department

Spies Like Them

As the FBI investigation deepens into Trump-Kremlin ties, we thought it would be useful – a public service, really – to provide some handy tips on spotting Russian spies.

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Tags: spies, KGB
January 31, 2017
Happy Birthday, Vodka! 10 Shots of Trivia
By Alice E.M. Underwood

Happy Birthday, Vodka! 10 Shots of Trivia

In 1865, vodka joined bears and matryoshkas as an eternal symbol of Russia. Here's how it happened, plus nine trivia tidbits on Russia's most beloved, harmful, and historical libation. 

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Tags: russia, vodka, history, smirnoff
December 19, 2016
10 Things (And 5 Jokes) You Didn't Know About Brezhnev
By Alice E.M. Underwood

10 Things (And 5 Jokes) You Didn't Know About Brezhnev

Soviet leader Leonid Ilyich Brezhnev would have been 110 on December 19. There are plenty of fun facts and surprising jokes behind the eyebrows.

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Tags: Brezhnev, Soviet Union, USSR, Stagnation
October 12, 2016
Fall, Tolstoy, Mushrooms
By Lev Tolstoy

Fall, Tolstoy, Mushrooms

In honor of fall, and Russians' favorite autumnal pastime – mushroom picking – we offer these two short stories by Lev Tolstoy – in both English and Russian!

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Tags: Tolstoy, fall, mushrooms
September 7, 2016
No Calendar, No Life
By Paul E. Richardson

No Calendar, No Life

Why are calendars so great? Give me a few minutes, and I will blow your mind.

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Tags: calendar, time, history
August 22, 2016
Magical Kefir
By Philip Seifi

Magical Kefir

Kefir is the most popular fermented milk in Russia. But it did not get there overnight. Kefir and Russia have a long history...

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Tags: food, health, Caucasus
July 8, 2016
Fevronia's Day
By Elizaveta Shkurina

Fevronia's Day

On July 8, Russia celebrates the Day of Family, Love and Fidelity, a holiday aimed at promoting traditional family values, more commonly known as Fevronia's Day. What's it all about?

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Tags: Fevronia, Orthodox Church, holidays
July 7, 2016
Celebrating Summer in Russia's Pagan Tradition
By Alice E.M. Underwood

Celebrating Summer in Russia's Pagan Tradition

Ivan Kupala is technically St. John the Baptist Day. But the bonfires and skinny-dipping that celebrate the Summer Solstice have deep roots in Russia's pagan past.

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Tags: ivan kupala, solstice, pagan, russia, maslenitsa, john the baptist
May 16, 2016
The Most Beautiful Village in Russia
By Paul E. Richardson

The Most Beautiful Village in Russia

Last week tiny Kinerma was named as this year's "most beautiful Russian village." As it turns out, Kinerma was a stop on The Spine of Russia project...

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Tags: Karelia, village, history
April 1, 2016
Crimea Crisis Solved?
By April F. Yulez

Crimea Crisis Solved?

In a surprising move that has shocked international pundits, Secretary of State John Kerry today announced he has arranged the de-annexation of Crimea by Russia. 

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Tags: crimea, kerry, international relations
March 31, 2016
Chess, Traffic and Briefcases
By Alice E.M. Underwood

Chess, Traffic and Briefcases

In The Weekly Russia File for March 31: some terrible chess puns, and how to stop traffic.

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March 24, 2016
Architecture and unexquisite corpses
By Alice E.M. Underwood

Architecture and unexquisite corpses

A church’s domes caving into the altar. A transgender couple finagles a wedding. A hospital patient shares a room with a corpse. Just another TWERF.

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Tags: architecture, murmansk, marriage
March 19, 2016
Happy Birthday, Gogol and Olesha!
By Eugenia Sokolskaya

Happy Birthday, Gogol and Olesha!

Two writers, two different centuries, one number in common. Actually, Yuri Olesha and Nikolai Gogol have more in common than you think!

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Tags: gogol, olesha, russian literature
March 14, 2016
Great Lent
By Linda DeLaine

Great Lent

The Great Lent is forty days when the Church is involved in repentance, fasting, prayer and almsgiving.

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Tags: orthodox, lent, fast pasch, religion, easter, paskha
March 7, 2016
Let the Maslenitsa Begin!
By Linda DeLaine

Let the Maslenitsa Begin!

Russia's Maslenitsa week has begun! So what's it all about?

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Tags: maslenitsa, blini, lent pascha, Orthodox
February 26, 2016
The Force is Strong There
By Mariana Noble

The Force is Strong There

There are some fascinating hidden connections between Star Wars (the movie) and Russia. Let's explore them, shall we?

 

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Tags: Star Wars, movies, film
February 15, 2016
Cold Hard Facts
By Mitya Aleshkovsky

Cold Hard Facts

I just returned from our village in Tver region, and have some sad news to share.

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Tags: healthcare, village life, elderly