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The Controversial Composer
May 07, 2015

The Controversial Composer

By Richard Taruskin

The personal and professional have become increasingly intertwined in considerations of the life and work of Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky. Music historian Richard Taruskin shows that this is nothing new – it all began shortly after the master composer's death.

Decoding Leviathan
February 23, 2015

Decoding Leviathan

By Diana Bruk

Leviathan is not, as virtually every mainstream critic has presumed, “anti-Russian.” I watched the movie resolutely prepared to intensely dislike it. I fully believed it would shamelessly pander to an American public eager to see a film that demonized Putin and made the country seem like a hellish landscape of unsalvageable bleakness. But that was not at all the case. 

Russian Exceptionalism According to Boris Dubin
October 15, 2014

Russian Exceptionalism According to Boris Dubin

By Eugenia Sokolskaya

A social state, a sense of community and shared decision making, an oddly distant government, home-grown values, and being split between Europe and Asia – according to Russians, this is what makes Russia special. But Boris Dubin's findings show that what really makes Russia special is Russia's ability to pretend no one else exists.

What the Bleep is Going on in Sochi?
February 07, 2014

What the Bleep is Going on in Sochi?

By Paul E. Richardson

Why is it that the Twitter hashtag #sochiproblems has more followers than the Twitter feed for the games? How is it that all we hear from the Western press is negativism, while from the athletes and local observers there are only raves for the fantastic facilities? Why do pictures of double toilets and unfinished hotels continue to flood the inter-tubes? And what idiot gave the order to kill puppies in Sochi?

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