July 01, 2018

Let's Create the New Russian Life Together


Let's Create the New Russian Life Together

Click-bait. Fake news. Sensationalism.

Online media is rife with problems, and, as a result, it largely gets Russia wrong, painting a uni-dimensional picture of corruption, mafia and dark arts that misrepresents the world’s largest country.

It’s sad, very sad. And dangerous.

We want to tackle this problem head on and we are uniquely positioned to do so.

A few recent back issues (click to see more)

A few recent back issues (click to see more)

For 23 years, we have been publishing Russian Life, the only truly independent, English language magazine on the world’s largest country.

While the mainstream media talks only of Russia’s mafia and matryoshkas, of Vladimir and vodka, we orient on Chekhov and centenarians, on language and literature, history and geography.

The nightly news likes cardboard-cutout, cartoonish views of Russia. We prefer a more nuanced, subtle approach that looks at the complexity of the place, at the unique, compelling stories it has to tell.

Does Russia have problems and flaws? Of course it does. Just like any other country or culture. And we don’t gloss over them. But instead of making them the be all and end all of our coverage, we put such issues into perspective, painting a multi-faceted portrait of this thousand-year-old land. 

We want to bring this same perspective and approach to the online media space. 

Our goal is to extend Russian Life’s publishing footprint, to make it the most interesting, authoritative online outlet on all things Russian. 

That is what our new Kickstarter is all about.

So what are we going to do?

  • First, we will completely revamping our website and online presence to make it mobile-first and easy to access and read on any device. 
  • Second, we will rebuild our database systems to make subscribing and renewing online a seamless and painless experience, enabling various combinations of digital and print subscriptions.
  • Third, we will put the entire 23 years of Russian Life online (available as part of a digital subscription). Thousands of articles will be at your fingertips for searching and retrieval.
  • Fourth, we will do the same with the current and future content of the print magazine, making it available online and readable on any device (no app required!), while adding online-only enhancements to articles. And print subscribers will be able to have a print/digital subscription for a modest additional fee.
  • Finally, we will supplement all of this with new, online-only content that uses the digital medium to its best effect. From videos and audio to travelogues, reviews, databases and interviews. We will also keep a close eye on the RuNet – the Russian-only internet – for you, regularly translating and sharing the most important and interesting information we find, just like we do with our popular weekly e-letter, The Weekly Russia File.
A first draft of our redesign

A first draft of our redesign

In the end, the depth and breadth of what we can achieve will depend on how successful this Kickstarter is and how popular the online site becomes.

But we think it is going to be huge. We think there is great pent-up demand for authentic, interesting, balanced information about Russia. And we want you to be a part of it. 

Together, we can create the New Russian Life… one that builds on what we have learned over the last 23 years with the print magazine… one that creates a Russian Life for the next generation – bridging the print and digital divide.

What do you get out of this?

Aside from a newly-enhanced, digital Russian Life platform, you mean? 

Well, by supporting our Kickstarter, you will essentially be pre-paying for a one-year online or print+online subscription, demonstrating to us and others that there is support to extend Russian Life in this new direction.

But you also will get some great, Kickstarter-only benefits.

Everyone who backs the project at the Diginaut or higher level will get an offset print (8x10 inches, full color) of the amazing original work of art, “Russian Seasons,” that Yekaterinburg artist Olga Ezova-Denisova is creating especially for this project. (More about Olga and this work in project updates to come.)

Olga at work...
Olga at work...

If you support the project at higher levels, you can also get one of the books we created in our previous Kickstarter projects.

Books we have kickstartered...
Books we have kickstartered...

At still higher levels you can get an original, numbered print of Olga’s artwork, and/or become an active advisor and participant in this new effort.

This is our dream: a dynamic, interesting publication that is as beautiful online as off, that bridges the digital-analog divide, letting readers choose how to receive Russian Life content, be it in through a mailbox by the side of the road, or via the internet superhighway (or both!). We are truly excited about this new development and I hope you will join us in taking Russian Life to the next level.

Paul Richardson 
Publisher 

 

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Some of Our Books

Tolstoy Bilingual

Tolstoy Bilingual

This compact, yet surprisingly broad look at the life and work of Tolstoy spans from one of his earliest stories to one of his last, looking at works that made him famous and others that made him notorious. 
Dostoyevsky Bilingual

Dostoyevsky Bilingual

Bilingual series of short, lesser known, but highly significant works that show the traditional view of Dostoyevsky as a dour, intense, philosophical writer to be unnecessarily one-sided. 
The Frogs Who Begged for a Tsar (bilingual)

The Frogs Who Begged for a Tsar (bilingual)

The fables of Ivan Krylov are rich fonts of Russian cultural wisdom and experience – reading and understanding them is vital to grasping the Russian worldview. This new edition of 62 of Krylov’s tales presents them side-by-side in English and Russian. The wonderfully lyrical translations by Lydia Razran Stone are accompanied by original, whimsical color illustrations by Katya Korobkina.
Woe From Wit (bilingual)

Woe From Wit (bilingual)

One of the most famous works of Russian literature, the four-act comedy in verse Woe from Wit skewers staid, nineteenth century Russian society, and it positively teems with “winged phrases” that are essential colloquialisms for students of Russian and Russian culture.
Russian Rules

Russian 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.
Marooned in Moscow

Marooned in Moscow

This gripping autobiography plays out against the backdrop of Russia's bloody Civil War, and was one of the first Western eyewitness accounts of life in post-revolutionary Russia. Marooned in Moscow provides a fascinating account of one woman's entry into war-torn Russia in early 1920, first-person impressions of many in the top Soviet leadership, and accounts of the author's increasingly dangerous work as a journalist and spy, to say nothing of her work on behalf of prisoners, her two arrests, and her eventual ten-month-long imprisonment, including in the infamous Lubyanka prison. It is a veritable encyclopedia of life in Russia in the early 1920s.
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.
Okudzhava Bilingual

Okudzhava Bilingual

Poems, songs and autobiographical sketches by Bulat Okudzhava, the king of the Russian bards. 
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.
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. 
Survival Russian

Survival Russian

Survival Russian is an intensely practical guide to conversational, colloquial and culture-rich Russian. It uses humor, current events and thematically-driven essays to deepen readers’ understanding of Russian language and culture. This enlarged Second Edition of Survival Russian includes over 90 essays and illuminates over 2000 invaluable Russian phrases and words.

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.

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Russian Life
73 Main Street, Suite 402
Montpelier VT 05602

802-223-4955