Hannah Martin

Taboos Abound

In 1985, women in the Soviet Union saw their chance to finally get the liberation from the ignorance towards women and their bodies that was rampant in Russian society. With Gorbachev’s policy of glasnost, women began using their bodies as the tool to wage this war. Von Geldern says that this revolution, so-to-speak, occurred in […]

Saving Baikal

As we’ve discovered in this course, Russia is a treasure trove of natural resources. Spanning nine time-zones and two continents, much of Russia’s wilderness was relatively untouched until the 20th century. Lake Baikal, the world’s largest freshwater lake was surprisingly subject to decades of abuse, starting with the First Five Year Plan in 1928 and […]

Moral Code of the Builder of Communism

In class on Thursday, I was part of a group that was assigned an article written in 1966 by a G. Mirsky. Though it was a tough read at first, my group was able to pick out some really important facets that the author only skimmed over. One of the most interesting things we extracted […]

To The (Literary) Limit

The years after Khrushchev’s Secret Speech at the 20th Party Congress not only opened up a literary void that needed to be filled, but also showed how the government was still defrosting from Stalin’s death just three years prior. While Khrushchev denounced all of the actions Stalin had taken in his years as a leader, […]

Katyn Forest Massacre

In 1943, a mass grave of Polish officers was discovered in the Katyn Forest near Smolensk in Russia. The radio announcement was made by a German radio station; the alleged massacre was apparently carried out by the Soviet secret police, the NKVD. Soviet History notes that “the claim was denounced by Stalin as a ‘monstrous […]

The ‘Zations– Collectivization and Dekulakization

The city of Magnitogorsk, “the celebrated socialist ‘planned’ city” was founded on a model that’s main goal was to out-do the extremely successful steel mills of Gary, Indiana . The construction of a huge steel mill was an integral part of the First Five-Year Plan and the city soon became a symbol of revolutionary transformation. […]

Food Supply in 1917

1917 was a difficult year for Russians of all social standings. The Russian Revolution of 1917 was a huge turning point for the Russian Empire and there were many factors that contributed to the overthrow of the Tsar. My focus of this blog post will be about the food riots and pogroms that occurred in […]

The Lena Goldfields and Russian Mining in the Early-20th Century

My previous post explored some of the questions that arose about the workers of the Bakaly mines in Western Russia. The picture that inspired these questions, Work at the Bakalskii Mine Pit, by Sergeii Mikhailovich Prokudin-Gorskii gave me few answers. Dr. Nelson prompted me to learn more about the goldfields located on the Lena River […]

The Bakalskii Mine Pit

The Ural Mountains are located in western Russia and are known for having large resources of iron, minerals and even semi-precious gemstones. This mountain range has been mined since the 1500s, and this image by Sergei Michailovich Prokudin-Gorskii depicts a small, family-run mine in the Bakaly hills outside of Yekaterinburg. It was one of the […]