Hero of the Final Frontier

© 2013 leahw93. All rights reserved.

Growing up in the American public school system, I distinctly remember learning several times about the first man on the moon, Neil Armstrong.  We were taught about Apollo 11, the American flag they placed on the surface, and of course, … Continue reading

Festival On the Streets

© 2013 leahw93. All rights reserved.

  After Stalin’s death, the new regime worked hard to dismantle his infamous system of secrecy, suppression, and the like.  This greatly affected the political system, but it certainly extended into the cultural realm as well.  Known as the Thaw, … Continue reading

The Iron Curtain Descends

© 2013 leahw93. All rights reserved.

The Cold War began in the aftermath of World War II as an “ideological, political, economic, military, and cultural” struggle for power between East and West (Seventeen Moments).  Because the Cold War was not always a literal war fought on … Continue reading

The Richest In Ideas

© 2013 leahw93. All rights reserved.

  In 1934, Soviet culture (and specifically literature) took a major turn with the adoption of socialist realism as the official state method.  The movement was surprisingly conservative in part; it represented a return to the old Russian realist tradition … Continue reading

The New Soviet Person

© 2013 leahw93. All rights reserved.

One of the most interesting elements of the Soviet era, in my opinion, is how they completely created a new way of life for their people.  It was not just a change in power or government or economy, but a … Continue reading

The Cultural Battlefield

© 2013 leahw93. All rights reserved.

As the Bolsheviks came to power, they faced many of the same social, economic, and national challenges that ended up destroying the previous regime.  At the same time, they faced an even bigger challenge:  that of completing the transition from … Continue reading

The October Manifesto

© 2013 leahw93. All rights reserved.

  Although we cannot change the past, it is sometimes interesting to think about the “what if’s.”  What if I had chosen to go to UVa over Virginia Tech?  What if the South had won the Civil War?  What if … Continue reading

On Prokudin-Gorskii

© 2013 leahw93. All rights reserved.

When I first looked through the Prokudin-Gorskii collection, right away I started thinking “how am I ever going to choose one of these for the blog?!”  So instead of choosing just one, I chose a few – and I’m going … Continue reading