In Volgograd, It’s Stalin Who Lurks on the SidelineBreaking News
tags: Russia, Stalin, World Cup, Volgograd
The woman with the sword rises like an avenging angel over the skyline, so tall you can see her even from far below in Volgograd Arena. This is Mother Russia, and buried at her feet lie the remains of tens of thousands of casualties of the Battle of Stalingrad, the conflict that will forever define this city.
Joseph Stalin himself vanished from the city in 1961, when his name was erased from Soviet history books and, with the stroke of a pen, Stalingrad became Volgograd. But he lives in its soul.
He also lives in the visitors’ center just down the hill, next to the parking lot.
Here he is in the Stalingrad Hotel, his portrait in the cafe, beside a TV on which Portugal is playing Morocco in the World Cup. Here he is in the gift shop, his face plastered on the souvenirs: Stalin flasks, Stalin playing cards, Stalin wall clocks, Stalin key chains, Stalin lighters, Stalin T-shirts, Stalin mugs and Stalin commemorative plates. (Vladimir V. Putin, the current Russian president, is available, too; his plate is next to Stalin’s.)
comments powered by Disqus
- Trump administration says joint UNC, Duke Middle East Studies program portrays Islam too positively
- What White Kids Learn About Race in School
- Frederick Douglass photos smashed stereotypes. Could Elizabeth Warren selfies do the same?
- Chronicling New York’s Muslim History
- New Documents Illuminate The University of Texas’s Secret Strategy to Keep Out Black Students
- Women Scientists Were Written Out of History. It’s Margaret Rossiter’s Lifelong Mission to Fix That
- Allen C. Guelzo Reviews Sidney Blumenthal's Latest Installment of His Biography of Lincoln
- What Reconstruction-Era Laws Can Teach Our Democracy: The NY Times Reviews Eric Foner's Latest Book
- Should historians read their own book?
- Cokie Roberts, Pioneering Journalist Who Helped Shape NPR, Dies At 75