Monday 29 December 2008

Russian police raid history project.

Rather quietly over Christmas, files belonging to the Memorial project have been raided by the Russian police. This worrying development has seen the Russian state intervene to obstruct the ground-breaking oral history project, which has interviewed thousands about life in Stalinist Russia. This has raised many (and answered some) interesting epistemological issues about knowledge and authoritarian regimes, but also revealing parts of the past which had been unrecoverable, and will soon be permanently lost as the witnesses and actors age. No dry academic research centre, Memorial (in English) blends human-rights advocacy and humanitarian undertakings with historical research.