Month: April 2018

All the Lies We Cannot See: Operation Infektion and HIV/AIDS in the Soviet Union

In the early 1980s, the HIV/AIDS virus emerged and spread with quick and deadly force. Throughout the decade and into the 1990s, those infected (often part of socially-ostracized groups) fought for their lives in the face a seemingly indifferent government, a willfully-blind public, and slow-moving pharmaceutical companies. However, in the midst of the chaos caused […]

Final Blogpost Guidelines

Mikhail Gorbachev’s leadership ushered in an era of increased freedom, opportunity, and hope for Soviet citizens, even as it fostered economic uncertainty, political instability, and the threat of chaos. For your final blog post, please choose a topic that gives you some insight on the collapse of Soviet communism and the social transformation that accompanied it.

Jeans, Dreams, and Olympic Rings – The Soviet 70’s

Corruption, fashion, and rock-n-roll…This week’s posts engaged the complex dynamics of Soviet society in the seventies. The Moscow Olympics and the invasion of the Afghanistan at the end of the decade attracted the most attention, but visitors will find wonderful discussions of science fiction, generational struggles over popular music and the appeal of Levi jeans here as well. Looking forward to the end of the Soviet Union (and the Semester), these posts provide context for the major stressors and changes that awaited the Soviet system in its final decade. Enjoy!

The Disolution of Family

In the late 1980s, a change in Russian traditions would begin to take place. As taboos regarding sexual exploration were increasingly challenged, the younger generation began to change the structure of a traditional family. We know from previous posts that a standard, ideal family was predominantly nuclear in composition with many children and perhaps some …

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Definitely not the most pleasant neighbors

Introductory Circumstances:  The Sino-Soviet split took place during the 60’s. It was caused by the divergence of ideals behind communism. Disagreements about peaceful co-existence with the west led to disagreements in the co-existence of the two countries. “They denounced the Soviet emphasis on “peaceful coexistence” with the capitalist world as kowtowing to the “paper tiger” […]

When I Was Young We Played Outside For all of those people like me who grew up with Nintendo and television I am sure the above title had been said at one point or another by your parents. It would seem in this regard, the Soviet youth were hearing these decades in advance. According to this news article from the Digest […]

Russian Into Afghanistan

It was in late December, 1979 that the Soviet 40th Army moved to invade the country of Afghanistan. In the Soviets’ mind, they were helping to improve communist relations between the Afghan people and the People’s Democratic Party of Afghanistan (PDPA), a communist political party.1 During the midst of the Cold War, the United States had … Continue reading Russian Into Afghanistan

A Bright New Future?

The 1970’s the golden years of the space age, it was only a few in July of 1969 had the Americans had put two men on the moon. With these significant technological innovations and a great deal of growing imagination, people began to think about life among the stars and the things we would do …

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Fighting in Afghanistan Never Works

If you haven’t picked up on it yet, I like to talk about war and conflict in history.  This blog post will do just that.  In late December, 1979, the USSR began conducting military operations in the socialist republic of Afghanistan, responding to an Afghani call for aid.  The goal of these operations were to stabilize […]