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Russia's Sputnik Generation: Soviet Baby Boomers Talk About by Donald J Raleigh

By Donald J Raleigh

Russia's Sputnik new release offers the existence tales of 8 1967 graduates of faculty No. forty two within the Russian urban of Saratov. Born in 1949/50, those 4 males and 4 ladies belong to the 1st iteration conceived throughout the Soviet Union's go back to ""normality"" following international struggle II. good knowledgeable, articulate, and loosely networked even this day, they have been first-graders the yr the USSR introduced Sputnik, and grew up in a rustic that more and more distanced itself from the excesses of Stalinism. achieving center age throughout the Gorbachev Revolution, they negotiated the transition to a Russian-style marketplace economic climate and stay lively, efficient participants of society in Russia and the diaspora.

In candid interviews with Donald J. Raleigh, those Soviet ""baby boomers"" speak about the historic instances during which they grew up, but additionally approximately their daily stories -- their kin backgrounds; youth interests; favourite books, video clips, and song; and influential humans of their lives. those own tales shed beneficial gentle on Soviet early life and early life, at the purposes and process perestroika, and at the wrenching transition that has taken position because the cave in of the Soviet Union in 1991.

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Additional info for Russia's Sputnik Generation: Soviet Baby Boomers Talk About Their Lives (Indiana-Michigan Series in Russian and East European Studies)

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Being brought up in Russia, where literature and life often mix into a single cultural reality, I am that reader, who would always imagine Nabokov and his heroes as something far more tangible than just a writer and his books. “The Word for us is such a substantial entity (spiritually) that it comes to resemble a physical force,”2 Tertz once wrote. Obviously, the Russians are not the only ones who imaginatively perceive literature and its heroes as real. Though Americans en masse seem to lack this habit of reading, it is a trait of other countries on the European continent.

If you take a guided tour of its canals, not only will your guide point out the apartments of Blok and Pushkin, he will show you where Raskolnikov6 and Akaky Akakievich subsisted in great poverty, and along which streets Yevgeny fled the Bronze Horseman . . In Moscow, you’ll spend hours searching for the house where Bulgakov’s Margarita lived, as if she really lived there. In the Russian “high-context” culture image and narrative are not simply letters and words on the printed page but part of our life, our everyday, ordinary existence.

The other group was enraged that an offspring of the Soviet elite dared to touch the holy of holies—Nabokov, the greatest exile, who despised the communists for ruining his country, his family, his city, and his life. How dare those Moscow Kremlin mugs study, think, speak about our Nabokov, kindred spirit to all of us, who hate the Soviet nomenklatura as much as he did? Moreover, how dare anyone read politics into Nabokov who, providing his readers with an escape from politics, proudly declared: “I am all for the ivory tower” (SO, I#3, 37)?

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