Suppression of Human Rights Unlikely to Change

Lack of human rights is a common theme to dictatorship like governments. It is interesting to look at the various institutions Russia considers to be a threat. Each of the organizations is singled out for very specific reasons. The idea of classifying organizations as “foreign agents” is useful because most countries view the involvement of outside players as unacceptable. The same happens in the US when discussing elections and money from foreign players to influence it.… Read the rest here

Flower Power, Not

While the article is interesting in describing a segment of the youth in the USSR during the 1970s to classify these youths as hippies seems to be a stretch. If being rebellious and listening to psychedelic rock classifies a person as a hippie then the hippie movement is alive and well. The article described a subset of youths that seem to show a rebellious spirit. They thumb their noses to the Communist Youth organization; they have issues with their parents and desire individuality.… Read the rest here

The Superpower Quest for Empire: The Cold War and Soviet Support for ‘Wars of National Liberation’

The thesis for this article is how the superpowers proxy wars and conflicts fought in Asia, Middle East, Africa and Latin America continue to flourish and shape the world in these countries 30 years later1).

Kanet sources are primarily from academia, with institutions in the United States. One very prominent reference source is himself. It seems reasonable if you are an expert on a subject then it is appropriate to use yourself as a key source in your article2)..… Read the rest here

One day in the life of Ivan Denisovich

The story of Ivan Denisovich is a telling tale of the human spirit and it’s will to survive. The author was able to make you feel the emotions of what life was truly like in the typical day of an inmate in the gulag. Ivan story seems to be a typical story of an individual that was accused of being a spy and guilty of treason against the soviet empire. The fact that other individuals in the same camp found themselves there under the same pretext shows it was a rather common crime, or in other words was a crime the government used to classify someone they believed had done something wrong.… Read the rest here

Who really likes living in a communal apartment anyways???

The idea of the USSR as a “communal apartment” presents the idea of socialism and the Soviet state in an analogy that is easy to grasp and remember1). The “communal apartment” ties in with the author’s thesis of the creation within the Soviet Union and the “Bolsheviks efforts on behalf of ethnic particularism.” Consistent efforts is seen in promoting group rights even at the cost of not harmonizing with rights of the proletariat, in contrast showing hostility to the rights of the individual2).… Read the rest here

Collectivization as a Revolution at what Costs?

A few things of note that stand out in this article on the collectivization of farms following the revolution are the thinking of the central committee and Stalin that they lost control of the process. In the rural country side the obvious discord or disconnect showed in thinking and actions of the rural cadres and even those sent from the city to help in the collectivization of farms who made up the group known as 25,000ers.… Read the rest here

Grand Experiment of Social and Cultural Revolution Early Soviet Central Asia

What stood out in Khalid’s article is the thinking and the desired outcomes behind the Soviet Revolution and that of the Russian colonial empire. Russia before the revolution was less concerned with assimilation of the native population. The Russian government like most imperial powers looks at economic gains and has little interest in cultural issues. Russian even went so far as to allow for a measure of autonomy among various central Asian counties under its control.… Read the rest here

Cultural Revival pre Revolution

When speaking about the revival of art in Russian in the early 20th century it is important while reviewing this information to understand what Avant-Garde refers to  and who Diaghilev is. Avant-Garde refers to experimental or innovative cultural work that pushes the boundaries of what is acceptable as the norm. Second, Sergei Diaghilev could be considered a patron of the arts during the early 20th century in Russia. He was an art critic, patron of the Ballets impresario, and founder of the Ballet Russes, where many famous dancers and choreographers would come from.… Read the rest here