Week 16 Posts

“Mr. Gorbachev Tear Down This Wall”

On June 12th of 1987 Ronald Reagan delivered his now famous speech in front of a large West German crowd near the Berlin wall. Officially, President Reagan was commemorating the 750th anniversary of Berlin. In reality, his speech harshly mocked the increasingly contradictory nature of the Soviet Union during the 1980′s. Soviet policies under Gorbachev had gradually […]

Behind the Iron Curtain: Western Music and the Soviet Collapse

The rise of Mikhail Gorbachev to General Secretary of the Soviet Union ushered in a time of general reform in Soviet Russia.  This reform was not out of want, but rather out of necessity.  The volatility of the international oil and natural gas markets, along with the ups and downs of the ever-struggling agricultural sector, […]

Don’t Ride the Ferris Wheel

One of the most tragic man made disasters that has ever occurred happened on April 26th 1986 in Chernobyl. I most likely do not even have to go into further detail for you to know what I’m writing about. Yes, the nuclear meltdown in Chernobyl Ukraine is the instance that is being referred to. Early […]

Welcome to the Party, Russia

When the Soviet Union collapsed in 1991, it had no concept of what a free market was (with the exception of the illegal black markets). However, when the Iron Curtain came crashing down, American companies were quick to enter the new market that contained millions of new potential customers. Gorbachev, who is often credited with […]

A Sick State

Russian health collapsed with the Soviet state, worsening during the political instability of the 1990′s, and continuing to suffer in the 21st century. In 1991, Russia’s Ministry of Health reported a negative rate of population change for the first time in the nation’s records. Unheard of for a world power, Russia’s dire state of public health…

A&E presents: Russian Moonshiners

No matter what try to write about in this class, I always end up making some sort of connection to a moment in American history. While the order in which they appear and the outcomes may be completely different, society still tends to play the same cards. Of of the most hilarious similarities I have […]