June 08, 2017

Celebrating Russian Language Day with Poets, Filmmakers, Journalists, & Robots


Celebrating Russian Language Day with Poets, Filmmakers, Journalists, & Robots
Masterpieces of Russian Culture

1. June 6th is Pushkin’s birthday, which is also celebrated in Russia as Russian Language Day. On the Russian language, Prime Minister Dmitri Medvedev marveled at its being alive and ever-changing, but also stressed the need to preserve its beauty and purity. If you’re more interested in the Pushkin side of the holiday, check out this photo gallery or take this quiz to test your knowledge of Russia’s favorite poet. Want to test your Pushkin smarts in Russian? There’s a quiz for that, too.

2. Renowned Russian filmmaker Alexander Sokurov has been recognized by the European Film Academy with a Lifetime Achievement Award. Some of the most celebrated works in his lifetime of achievements include Russian Ark, which explores Russian history in a one-take journey through the Hermitage Museum, and his trilogy of films about power focusing on Hitler, Lenin, and Emperor Hirohito. The “European Oscar” he has received celebrates his unique contributions to directing, dramaturgy and cinematography.

3. In a feat not so likely to win any awards, NBC journalist Megyn Kelly had a tough time with Russian interviewees this past week. First there was the state-run news executive criticizing allegations of Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. election – Kelly referred to him a “broadcaster,” perhaps accidentally implying that he had no stake in that particular party line. In her subsequent powwows with Putin, the president deflected, denied, and accused her of hysteria to derail the conversation about hacking. For a first assignment on a new network, Kelly didn’t get a walk in the park. 

In Robotter News
  • For sale: Facebook likes and Instagram followers. All thanks to another robot, also known as a kiosk in a central Moscow mall.
  • If you’ve ever been to a museum in Russia, you’ve likely been hushed, glared at, or told not to take photos by lady in a chair. No, there’s not a robot version yet. But their stories poignantly speak to the power of Russian culture and the museums that display it.
Quote of the Week

"Of course, language is a living organism and it changes, but it is important to preserve its beauty and purity. We have paid serious attention to these issues."
—Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev's remarks on the Russian language to mark Russian Language Day.

Want more where this comes from? Give your inbox the gift of TWERF, our Thursday newsletter on the quirkiest, obscurest, and Russianest of Russian happenings of the week.

 

Like this post? Get a weekly email digest + member-only deals

Some of Our Books

Steppe / Степь

Steppe / Степь

This is the work that made Chekhov, launching his career as a writer and playwright of national and international renown. Retranslated and updated, this new bilingual edition is a super way to improve your Russian.
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. 
Russia Rules

Russia Rules

From the shores of the White Sea to Moscow and the Northern Caucasus, Russian Rules is a high-speed thriller based on actual events, terrifying possibilities, and some really stupid decisions.
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.
The Little Humpbacked Horse

The Little Humpbacked Horse

A beloved Russian classic about a resourceful Russian peasant, Vanya, and his miracle-working horse, who together undergo various trials, exploits and adventures at the whim of a laughable tsar, told in rich, narrative poetry.
Murder at the Dacha

Murder at the Dacha

Senior Lieutenant Pavel Matyushkin has a problem. Several, actually. Not the least of them is the fact that a powerful Soviet boss has been murdered, and Matyushkin's surly commander has given him an unreasonably short time frame to close the case.
Driving Down Russia's Spine

Driving Down Russia's Spine

The story of the epic Spine of Russia trip, intertwining fascinating subject profiles with digressions into historical and cultural themes relevant to understanding modern Russia. 
Davai! The Russians and Their Vodka

Davai! The Russians and Their Vodka

In this comprehensive, quixotic and addictive book, Edwin Trommelen explores all facets of the Russian obsession with vodka. Peering chiefly through the lenses of history and literature, Trommelen offers up an appropriately complex, rich and bittersweet portrait, based on great respect for Russian culture.
The Little Golden Calf

The Little Golden Calf

Our edition of The Little Golden Calf, one of the greatest Russian satires ever, is the first new translation of this classic novel in nearly fifty years. It is also the first unabridged, uncensored English translation ever, and is 100% true to the original 1931 serial publication in the Russian journal 30 Dnei. Anne O. Fisher’s translation is copiously annotated, and includes an introduction by Alexandra Ilf, the daughter of one of the book’s two co-authors.
White Magic

White Magic

The thirteen tales in this volume – all written by Russian émigrés, writers who fled their native country in the early twentieth century – contain a fair dose of magic and mysticism, of terror and the supernatural. There are Petersburg revenants, grief-stricken avengers, Lithuanian vampires, flying skeletons, murders and duels, and even a ghostly Edgar Allen Poe.
Murder and the Muse

Murder and the Muse

KGB Chief Andropov has tapped Matyushkin to solve a brazen jewel heist from Picasso’s wife at the posh Metropole Hotel. But when the case bleeds over into murder, machinations, and international intrigue, not everyone is eager to see where the clues might lead.

About Us

Russian Life is a publication of a 30-year-young, award-winning publishing house that creates a bimonthly magazine, books, maps, and other products for Russophiles the world over.

Latest Posts

Our Contacts

Russian Life
73 Main Street, Suite 402
Montpelier VT 05602

802-223-4955