All posts tagged Lenin

Russian thought lecture 4: Nihilism and the birth of Russian radicalism: from science to art

Readings: Nikolai Chernyshevsky, extracts from “The Anthropological Principle in Philosophy” (1860); Dmitry Pisarev, “The Realists” (1864) and “The Thinking Proletariat” (1865) We’re now moving away from the debate that arose initially out of Chaadaev’s “First Philosophical Letter” and dominated Russian intellectual life in the 1830s and 1840s. In the next generation a different set of […]

Lenin and the Constructivists in Stockholm

One of the highlights of my recent trip to Stockholm was a visit to the Moderna Museet. In addition to a very fine lunch with a fabulous view in the restaurant, I very much enjoyed the Explosion! exhibition, and learnt a good deal about Swedish pre-WWII art, but the visit was also notable for a […]

Lenin in London: A Reply to Helen Rappaport

I recently received a comment from Helen Rappaport, responding to the criticisms I made of of her book Conspirator: Lenin in Exile (New York: Perseus, 2010) in my post on Lenin in London. You can read her comments on my Contact Me page, but I have decided to reply here rather than there, as I […]

Four short links: Russian oddments

1. Hermitage cats. For over 250 years – with a break during the siege when they sadly all perished – the Hermitage has been home to an army of 50 or so cats, and every year the museum holds a Cat Day in March with lots of cat-related events to celebrate the Winter Palace’s most […]

Russians in London: Lenin

I’m no fan of Lenin, but he spent a good deal of time in London, so must be included in this series. I haven’t chosen this mugshot as an expression of my disapproval – it’s just that most of the photos that are available were taken after the revolution, and this one is the closest […]

Russians in London: Introduction

Over the next few weeks, I will be publishing a series of posts entitled ‘Russians in London’. The project came to mind when I was researching Dostoevsky and the Crystal Palace earlier this year. I started thinking about his description of Whitechapel and the Haymarket in Winter Notes on Summer Impressions, and imagined him haunting […]

Chto delat? at the ICA

Chto delat? (What is to be Done?) is a collective of artists, theorists and political activists from Moscow, Petersburg and Novgorod, formed in 2003. In general I’m more au fait with their political work, via their Russian blog, where I’ve been reading intermittently about the activities and persecution (both official and unofficial) of anti-fascist, ecological and […]

An Interview with Robert Chandler

The Road, Robert Chandler’s new collection of translations of Vasily Grossman’s short stories and essays, will be published by MacLehose Press on 14th October 2010. On Monday 4th October at 6.30pm, he will be giving a talk about Grossman at Pushkin House, 5a Bloomsbury Square, to mark the publication. Here I talk to Robert about Grossman’s writing […]

Soviet jokes

The book I’ve been reading for fun over the last few days could, for once, actually be described as fun: Ben Lewis, Hammer and Tickle: A History of Communism Told Through Communist Jokes (2008). Actually, it isn’t that funny, partly because analyses of humour never are (the worst research seminar I’ve ever been to was […]

Krupskaya: an apology

I’ve been criticized by my boyfriend for my unsisterly (although true — even he admits it) comment about Nadezhda Krupskaya in a recent post. So, I apologise, and instead will enumerate some of the many valid reasons there are to dislike the woman. There is, of course, her dreadful hagiography, Reminiscences of Lenin. And the fact […]