Soviet dissidents were people who disagreed with certain features in the embodiment of Soviet ideology and who were willing to speak out against them. The term dissident was used in the Soviet Union in the period following Joseph Stalin's death until the fall of communism, it was used to refer to small groups of marginalized intellectuals whose modest challenges to the Soviet regime met protection and encouragement from correspondents. Following the etymology of the term, a dissident is considered to "sit apart" from the regime; as dissenters began self-identifying as dissidents, the term came to refer to an individual whose non-conformism was perceived to be for the good of a society. Political opposition in the USSR was visible and, with rare exceptions, of little consequence. Instead, an important element of dissident activity in the Soviet Union was informing society about violation of laws and human rights. Over time, the dissident movement created vivid awareness of Soviet Communist abuses.
Soviet dissidents who criticized the state faced possible legal sanctions under the Soviet Criminal Code and faced the choice of exile, the mental hospital, or the labor camp. Anti-Soviet political behavior, in particular, being outspoken in opposition to the authorities, demonstrating for reform, writing books were defined in some persons as being a criminal act, a symptom, a diagnosis. In the 1950s, Soviet dissidents started leaking criticism to the West by sending documents and statements to foreign diplomatic missions in Moscow. In the 1960s, Soviet dissidents declared that the rights the government of the Soviet Union denied them were universal rights, possessed by everyone regardless of race and nationality. In August 1969, for instance, the Initiating Group for Defense of Civil Rights in the USSR appealed to the United Nations Committee on Human Rights to defend the human rights being trampled on by Soviet authorities in a number of trials. Our history shows that most of the people can be fooled for a long time.
But now all this idiocy is coming into clear contradiction with the fact that we have some level of openness. The heyday of the dissenters as a presence in the Western public life was the 1970s; the Helsinki Accords inspired dissidents in the Soviet Union, Czechoslovakia and Poland to protest human rights failures by their own governments. The Soviet dissidents demanded that the Soviet authorities implement their own commitments proceeding from the Helsinki Agreement with the same zeal and in the same way as the outspoken legalists expected the Soviet authorities to adhere to the letter of their constitution. Dissident Russian and East European intellectuals who urged compliance with the Helsinki accords have been subjected to official repression. According to Soviet dissident Leonid Plyushch, Moscow has taken advantage of the Helsinki security pact to improve its economy while increasing the suppression of political dissenters. 50 members of Soviet Helsinki Groups were imprisoned. Cases of political prisoners and prisoners of conscience in the Soviet Union were divulged by Amnesty International in 1975 and by The Committee for the Defense of Soviet Political Prisoners in 1975 and 1976.
US President Jimmy Carter in his inaugural address on 20 January 1977 announced that human rights would be central to foreign policy during his administration. In February, Carter sent Andrei Dmitrievich Sakharov a letter expressing his support for the latter's stance on human rights. In the wake of Carter's letter to Sakharov, the USSR cautioned against attempts "to interfere' in its affairs under "a thought-up pretext of'defending human rights.'" Because of Carter's open show of support for Soviet dissidents, the KGB was able to link dissent with American imperialism through suggesting that such protest is a cover for American espionage in the Soviet Union. The KGB head Yuri Andropov determined, "The need has thus emerged to terminate the actions of Orlov, fellow Helsinki monitor Ginzburg and others once and for all, on the basis of existing law." According to Dmitri Volkogonov and Harold Shukman, it was Andropov who approved the numerous trials of human rights activists such as Andrei Amalrik, Vladimir Bukovsky, Vyacheslav Chornovil, Zviad Gamsakhurdia, Alexander Ginzburg, Natalya Gorbanevskaya, Pyotr Grigorenko, Anatoly Shcharansky, others.
According to Soviet dissident Yuri Glazov, Andropov was a paradigmatic Homo Sovieticus and conducted disinformation campaigns against his main opponents and dissidents Andrei Sakharov and Alexander Solzhenitsyn. If we accept human rights violations as just "their way" of doing things we are all guilty. Voluntary and involuntary emigration allowed the authorities to rid themselves of many political active intellectuals including writers Valentin Turchin, Georgi Vladimov, Vladimir Voinovich, Lev Kopelev, Vladimir Maximov, Naum Korzhavin, Vasily Aksyonov and others. A Chronicle of Current Events covered 424 political trials, in which 753 people were convicted, no one of the accused was acquitted. According to Soviet dissidents and Western critics, the KGB had sent dissenters to psychiatrists for diagnosing to avoid embarrassing publiс trials and to discredit dissidence as the product of ill minds. On the grounds that political dissenters in the Soviet Union were psychotic and deluded, they were locked away in psychiatric hospitals and treated with neuroleptics.
Confinement of political dissenters in psychiatric institutions had become a comm
Mikhail Samuilovich Agursky, real name Melik Samuilovich Agursky, was asovietologist and historian of National Bolshevism. Agursky was a member of the Soviet Academy of Sciences and Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Mikhail Agursky was the pen name of Melik Agursky. Other variations of the name are Melib, he was the son of a historian and party leader Samuel Haimovich Agursky. In 1955 he married Vera Feodorovna Kondratieva. Mikhail Agursky was born as Melik Samuilovich Agursky in Moscow in 1933 to a Jewish family, his father Samuel Agursky was historian. Mikhail Agursky defended a dissertation on cybernetics. In 1975 he emigrated to Israel. Agursky became a Fellow of the Soviet and East European Research Center at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, his book "The Ideology of National Bolshevism" was published in Paris in 1980. On 21 August 1991 Agursky was found dead on in his hotel room in Moscow. Mikhail Agursky - The Ideology of National Bolshevism
Andrei Alekseevich Amalrik, alternatively spelled Andrei or Andrey, was a Russian writer and dissident. Amalrik was best known in the Western world for his essay, Will the Soviet Union Survive Until 1984? Amalrik was born during the time of Joseph Stalin's purges; when the Soviet revolution broke out, Andrei's father a young man, volunteered for the Red Army. After the war he went into the film industry. Andrei's father fought in World War II in the Northern Fleet and the Red Army, he was overheard uttering negative views about Stalin's qualities as a military leader, which led to his arrest and imprisonment. In 1942 he was invalided out of the service. Andrei's father's hardships explain Andrei's decision to become a historian. For his father, after climbing the educational ladder, was after the war refused permission to study at the Academy of Sciences' Institute of History on account of what authorities felt was his own compromised political past, but as historian John Keep wrote: "Andrei has gone one better by not only writing history but by securing a place in it."Andrei's father developed a serious heart condition which required constant nursing.
This care was provided first by his wife, on her death from cancer in 1959 by his son Andrei, until Andrei's arrest prevented him from ministering to his father's needs. He died. In high school, Andrei Amalrik was truant, he was expelled a year before graduation. Despite this, he won admission to the history department at Moscow State University in 1959. In 1963, he angered the university with a dissertation suggesting that Scandinavian warrior-traders and Greeks, rather than Slavs, played the principal role in developing the early Russian state in the ninth century. Amalrik was expelled from Moscow University. Without a degree, Amalrik did odd jobs and wrote five unpublished plays but was soon under the gaze of the security police for an attempt to contact a Danish scholar through the Danish Embassy, he became close to the unofficial youth literary group SMOG. Amalrik's plays and an interest in modern non-representational art led to Amalrik's first arrest in May 1965. A charge of spreading pornography failed because the expert witnesses called by the prosecution refused to give the correct testimony.
However, the authorities accused Amalrik of "parasitism," and he was sentenced by an administrative tribunal to banishment in western Siberia for a two-and-a-half-year term. He was freed and rearrested and sent to exile in a farm village near Tomsk, in Siberia. Allowed to make a brief trip to Moscow after the death of his father, Amalrik persuaded Tatar expressionist artist, Gyuzel Makudinova, to marry him and share his exile, it was this exile. Thanks to the efforts of his lawyer, his sentence was overturned in 1966 and Amalrik returned to Moscow, moving with Gyuzel into a crowded communal apartment with one bath, one kitchen, one telephone. During the trial of writers Andrei Sinyavsky and Yuli Daniel in February 1966, Amalrik and other dissenters stood outside of the trial to protest. Amalrik met with foreign correspondents to relay protests, took part in vigils outside courthouses and gave an interview to an American television reporter. After the invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968, pressure on Russia's intellectuals was stepped up by the authorities.
Amalrik's apartment was twice searched, in May 1969 and February 1970. Amalrik was best known in the Western world for his essay Will the Soviet Union Survive Until 1984?, published in 1970. The book predicts the country's eventual breakup under the weight of social and ethnic antagonisms and a disastrous war with China. Writing in 1969, Amalrik wanted to make 1980 as the date of the Soviet downfall, because 1980 was a round number, but Amalrik was persuaded by a friend to change it to the Orwellian inspired year of 1984. Amalrik predicted the collapse of the regime would occur between 1980 and 1985. Amalrik said in his book: I must emphasize that my essay is based not on scholarly research but only on observation. From an academic point of view, it may appear to be only empty chatter, but for Western students of the Soviet Union, at any rate, this discussion should have the same interest that a fish would have for an ichthyologist if it began to talk. Amalrik was incorrect in some of his predictions, such as a coming military collision with China, the collapse of the Soviet Union occurred in 1991, not 1984.
He failed to predict that he himself would not survive 1980. Correct was his argument that: If...one views the present "liberalization" as the growing decrepitude of the regime rather than its regeneration the logical result will be its death, which will be followed by anarchy." Amalrik predicted. Either power would pass to extremist elements and the country would "disintegrate into anarchy and intense national hatred," or the end would come peacefully and lead to a federation like the British Commonwealth or the European Common Market; as 1984 drew nearer, Amalrik revised the timetable but still predicted that the Soviet Union would collapse. Predictions of the Soviet Union's impending demise were discounted by many, if not most, Western academic specialists, had little impact on mainstream Sovietology. "Amalrik's essay was welcomed as a piece of brilliant literature in the West" but "irtu
Vilnius is the capital of Lithuania and its largest city, with a population of 574,147 as of 2018. Vilnius is the second largest city in the Baltic states. Vilnius is the seat of the main government institutions of Lithuania and the Vilnius District Municipality. Vilnius is classified as a Gamma global city according to GaWC studies, is known for the architecture in its Old Town, declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1994. Before World War II, Vilnius was one of the largest Jewish centres in Europe, its Jewish influence has led to it being described as the "Jerusalem of Lithuania" and Napoleon named it "the Jerusalem of the North" as he was passing through in 1812. In 2009, Vilnius was the European Capital of Culture, together with the Austrian city of Linz; the name of the city originates from the Vilnia River. The city has been known by many derivate spellings in various languages throughout its history: Vilna was once common in English; the most notable non-Lithuanian names for the city include: Polish: Wilno, Belarusian: Вiльня, German: Wilna, Latvian: Viļņa, Russian: Вильна, Ukrainian: Вільно, Yiddish: ווילנע.
A Russian name from the time of the Russian Empire was Вильна. The names Wilno and Vilna have been used in older English, German and Italian language publications when the city was one of the capitals of Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth and an important city in the Second Polish Republic; the name Vilna is still used in Finnish, Portuguese and Hebrew. Wilna is still used in German, along with Vilnius; the neighborhoods of Vilnius have names in other languages, which represent the languages spoken by various ethnic groups in the area. According to the legend, Grand Duke Gediminas was hunting in the sacred forest near the Valley of Šventaragis, near where Vilnia River flows into the Neris River. Tired after the successful hunt of a wisent, the Grand Duke settled in for the night, he fell soundly asleep and dreamed of a huge Iron Wolf standing on top a hill and howling as strong and loud as a hundred wolves. Upon awakening, the Duke asked the krivis Lizdeika to interpret the dream, and the priest told him: "What is destined for the ruler and the State of Lithuania, is thus: the Iron Wolf represents a castle and a city which will be established by you on this site.
This city will be the capital of the Lithuanian lands and the dwelling of their rulers, the glory of their deeds shall echo throughout the world." Therefore, obeying the will of the gods, built the city, gave it the name Vilnius – from the stream of the Vilnia River. Historian Romas Batūra identifies the city with Voruta, one of the castles of Mindaugas, crowned in 1253 as King of Lithuania. During the reign of Vytenis a city started to emerge from a trading settlement and the first Franciscan Catholic church was built; the city was first mentioned in written sources in 1323 as Vilna, when the Letters of Grand Duke Gediminas were sent to German cities inviting Germans to settle in the capital city, as well as to Pope John XXII. These letters contain the first unambiguous reference to Vilnius as the capital. According to legend, Gediminas dreamt of an iron wolf howling on a hilltop and consulted a pagan priest Lizdeika for its interpretation, he was told: "What is destined for the ruler and the State of Lithuania, is thus: the Iron Wolf represents a castle and a city which will be established by you on this site.
This city will be the capital of the Lithuanian lands and the dwelling of their rulers, the glory of their deeds shall echo throughout the world". The location offered practical advantages: it lay in the Lithuanian heartland at the confluence of two navigable rivers, surrounded by forests and wetlands that were difficult to penetrate; the duchy had been subject to intrusions by the Teutonic Knights. Vilnius was the flourishing capital of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, the residence of the Grand Duke. Gediminas expanded the Grand Duchy through warfare along with strategic marriages. At its height it covered the territory of modern-day Lithuania, Ukraine and portions of modern-day Poland and Russia, his grandchildren Vytautas the Great and Jogaila, fought civil wars. During the Lithuanian Civil War of 1389–1392, Vytautas besieged and razed the city in an attempt to wrest control from Jogaila; the two settled their differences. The rulers of this federation held either or both of two titles: Grand Duke of Lithuania or King of Poland.
In 1387, Jogaila acting as a Grand Duke of Lithuania and King of Poland Władysław II Jagiełło, granted Magdeburg rights to the city. The city underwent a period of expansion; the Vilnius city walls were built for protection between 1503 and 1522, comprising nine city gates and three towers, Sigismund August moved his court there in 1544. Its growth was due in part to the establishment of Alma Academia et Universitas Vilnensis Societatis Iesu by the Polish King and Grand Duke of Lithuania Stefan Bathory in 1579; the university soon developed into one of the most important scientific and cultural centres of the region and the most notable scientific centre of the Commonwealth. During its rapid development, the city was open to migrants from the territories of the Crown of the Kingdom of Poland, Grand Duchy and further. A variety of languages were spoken: Polish, Yiddish, Lithuanian, Old
Anton Vladimirovich Antonov-Ovseyenko was a Russian historian and writer. Born on 23 February 1920, he was the son of a Bolshevik military leader Vladimir Antonov-Ovseyenko. In 1935, he joined the historical faculty of the Moscow State Pedagogical Institute. In 1938, he was expelled from Komsomol and the institute wherein, however, he was reinstated in the same year, he was spent 13 years in labor camps. Antonov-Ovseyenko is best known for his biography of Lavrentiy Beria and he wrote several books. Antonov-Ovseyenko operated a state museum on the Gulag, for which the Moscow administration provided a building in August 2001; when he died in 2013, he was still working two full days a week to continue documenting what he called "the evils of the Soviet era" and to help with plans for a new, larger space. The Time of Stalin: Portrait of a Tyranny, Harper & Row, 1981, ISBN 0-06-010148-2 Theater of Joseph Stalin Moscow. "Grėgori-Pėĭdzh", 1995. ISBN 5-900493-15-6 Enemy of the people, Moscow. Intellekt, 1996.
Russian text online Beria Moscow, ACT, 1999, ISBN 5-237-03178-1 Naprasnyi podvig? Moscow: ACT, 2003. ISBN 5-17-017525-6 Anton Antonov-Ovseyenko on IMDb Anton Antonov Ovseyenko, Who Exposed Stalin Terror, Dies at 93 New York Times, July 10, 2013
Anna Alexandrovna Barkova, July 16, 1901 – April 29, 1976, was a Soviet poet, playwright, essayist and writer of fiction. She was imprisoned for more than 20 years in the Gulag. In 2017 a film about her life was released by Ceská Televize, titled 8 hlav sílenství, starring the popular singer Aneta Langerová. Anna was born into the family of a private school janitor in the textile town of Ivanovo in 1901, she was allowed to attend the school because of her father's position, a rare opportunity for a young working class girl in pre-revolutionary Russia. In 1918 she enrolled as a member of the Circle of Genuine Proletarian Poets, a writers group based in Ivanovo. Soon after joining she began to write short pieces for the group's paper The Land of the Workers, she published poetry in the paper under the pseudonym Kalika perekhozhaia, a name given to blind or maimed singers who went from village to village singing devotional ballads to obtain alms. Anna's early poetry attracted the attention of the Bolshevik literary establishment, including the leading critic Aleksandr Voronsky and the Commisar of Enlightenment Anatoly Lunacharsky.
Lunacharsky became her patron, in 1922 she moved to Moscow to act as his secretary. In 1922 her first poetry collection Woman was published with a foreword by Lunacharsky. In 1923 her play, she attended the writer's school in Moscow directed by Valery Bryusov, wrote for his paper Print and Revolution. Maria Ulyanova, the sister of Vladimir Lenin, found Anna a position at the paper Pravda, helped her to put together a second collection of poems, never published, she became disillusioned with Soviet life in the late 1920s. Her poems of the early 1930s were critical of Soviet life and institutions, she wrote in 1925: In 1934 Barkova was denounced and arrested, some of her poetry was used against her as evidence. She was sentenced to five years imprisonment, she endured a repeat arrest in November 1947, when she was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment and 5 years of restricted rights. Her second conviction was overturned in December 1955 and she was freed, she was rehabilitated in October 1957 arrested for a third time in November, sentenced again to 10 years in prison and 5 years of restricted rights.
She was freed when this third conviction was overturned in May 1965. She suffered two periods of exile from 1940 to 1947 and from 1965 to 1967. In 1967 she was allowed to return to Moscow after the intervention of a group of writers led by Alexander Tvardovsky and Konstantin Fedin, she lived out the remainder of her life in relative poverty in a communal flat in the Garden Ring, where she preserved her enthusiasm for books and conversation. A Few Autobiographical Facts and Tatar Anguish, from An Anthology of Russian Women's Writing, 1777–1992, Oxford, 1994. Site dedicated to her at bard.ru