Night of Stone: Death and Memory in Twentieth Century Russia

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Viking, 2001 - History - 402 pages
10 Reviews
Russia has endured more bloodshed than any other European country in the twentieth century. Yet, while countries such as Germany have learned the value of confronting the darker side of their own pasts, Russia has never faced the reality of its troubled history in a meaningful and collective way. In this provocative and highly original book, Catherine Merridale asks Russians difficult questions about how their country's volatile past has affected their everyday lives, their aspirations, their dreams, and their nightmares.

Based on extensive research including rare imperial archives, Soviet propaganda, memoirs, letters, newspapers, literature, psychiatric studies, and texts, as well as interviews with doctors, priests, social workers, policemen, survivors, gravediggers, and funeral directors, Night of Stone seeks answers to the questions: What is the true impact of violence in the Soviet century? How successfully have the Russians psychologically rewritten their own histories? What rituals have survived the Soviet regime, and what do they tell us of the Russian mentality? Reminiscent of the highly successful The Hour of Our Death, Night of Stone is an emotionally wrenching, eloquent work that will appeal to all readers of Russian and European history as well as anyone interested in the processes of memory.

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Review: Night of Stone: Death and Memory in Twentieth-Century Russia

User Review  - Goodreads

Excellent sad...very helpful watching the events unfold in the Crimea and Ukraine. This book details the way Russians deal with death, burials, and remembering the dead. Read full review

Review: Night of Stone: Death and Memory in Twentieth-Century Russia

User Review  - Goodreads

Brilliantly researched. A breath of fresh air on the academic market as she speaks Russian and is interested in listening to everyday Russians, and not simply relying on the archives and libraries. Conclusion is somewhat abstract, indicative perhaps of the subject material. Read full review


An Introduction l
Another Light
A Culture of Death

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About the author (2001)

Catherine Merridale is a senior lecturer in history at the University of Bristol and the author of two books on Russia. She lives in Bristol, England.

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