“The London – Russia Society”
2nd Session (January -April 2003)
Presenting a powerful programme
a succession of superb speakers!
Wednesday 15th Jan 2003 in the University of London Union (ULU), Malet Street 6.30 p.m. for 7p.m. (Room 3D)
“BRITAIN AND THE END OF THE COLD WAR”
Sir Rodric Braithwaite GCMG
(with Sir Curtis Keeble GCMG in the Chair)
Sir Rodric talks not only about his experiences as British Ambassador to the USSR and to the Russian Federation (1988-1992) during which time he witnessed the dramatic demise of the Soviet Union, but he surveys and assesses also episodes during the Cold War since 1948, and draws important conclusions.
Sir Rodric Braithwaite took first class honours in Modern Languages (including Russian) at Cambridge, served in British Intelligence, spent his entire professional career in the Foreign Office where he became head of the Foreign Office Policy Planning Staff, and in the Diplomatic Corps. He was Chairman of the Britain-Russia Centre from 1995 until 1999. He is currently a consultant and non- executive Director of the Deutsche Bank.
Sir Curtis Keeble was British Ambassador to the USSR from 1976 until 1982 – a lime of terrifying tension when the Red Army launched its invasion of Afghanistan. Sir Curtis was Chairman of the GB-USSR Association and of the Britain-Russia Centre, in its heyday from 1985 until 1994.
Sir Rodric’s most recent book “Across the Moscow River. The World turned upside down” (reviewed in this issue of the Journal) should be on sale at this meeting with a discount for members.
Monday 27th January 2003 at the Cardinal Inn, Francis Street 6.15p.m. for 7.00p.m.
“IMPERIAL SAINT PETERSBURG. BUILDING AGAINST WATER”
In response to the phenomenal demand for this talk on October 7th 2002, Dr Catherine Cooke returns, in this the Tercentenary Year of one of the world’s most beautiful cities, to accommodate those who did not get places last time. A wealth of fabulous slides, with a commentary that is erudite and authoritative. This time the projector should behave immaculately!
JUST A FEW SEATS LEFT, SO BOOK EARLY!
Wednesday 5th February 2003 at 15 BELGRAVE SQUARE 6PM. FOR 6.40 PM. (Note earlier time) Nearest tube station is Hyde Park Corner (Piccadilly Line).
A MEETING IN CONJUNCTION WITH THE GREAT BRITAIN – CHINA CENTRE
“UZBEKISTAN – HEART OF THE SILK ROAD. AN ILLUSTRATED MEANDER THROUGH TIME AND SPACE”.
Calum Macleod (with slides and stories)
(with Godfrey Cromwell in the Chair)
Godfrey Cromwell is the current Director of The Britain-Russia and British East-West Centres.
From the blue-tiled splendour of Tamerlane’s Samarkand to the holy city of Bukhara, boasting a mosque for every day of the year, and beyond, the desert-girdled khanate of Khiva, Uzbekistan lays claim to a breathtaking legacy. Bound by sand and snow, fed by meltwater from the Roof of the World, these fertile oases attracted the greatest travellers and conquerors in history, along the fragile threads of the Silk Road.
In 1992 they attracted Calum Macleod and his wife, fired by Great Game tales and posing as antique dealers, despite looking like student backpackers. Uzbekistan was newly shorn of its Soviet sire, yet only business visas could open once-forbidden frontiers. A decade later, invitations are still required, but false pretences are not. The Golden Road to Samarkand has never stretched this close.
Whether you hope to return after a long absence, or have yet to make your first trip, Calum will refresh your enthusiasm to visit, through beautiful images that connect places with outrageous history and show how a knowledge of Central Asia’s past is essential to an understanding of its future. Slides shot over the past ten years will help visualise half-familiar names, take you off the beaten track, and reveal the state of the nation today.
Afghan troubles meant that neighbouring Uzbekistan garnered more world attention over the last year than at any time since regular Great Game headlines in The Times of the 19th century. Yet for the traveller, there has rarely been a better time to enjoy the most fascinating Central Asian republic. You can now book for bed and breakfasts in the mud-walled maze of Old Bukhara, or negotiate a star-sheltered yurt deep in the Red Sands desert.
But before you go, try armchair travel with the author of “Uzbekistan: The Golden Road to Samarkand” Calum’s guidebook to the country, available at a 20% discount after his talk. As the New York Times enthused, this is “one of those rare travel guides that is a joy to read whether or not you are planning a trip.” The only guide to focus on the wealth of sites, stories and surprises at the heart of Central Asia, the fully revised fourth edition has just been published by Odyssey Guides.
Calum Macleod is the Assistant Director of the Great Britain-China Centre in London. He graduated in Oriental Studies from Oxford University in 1992, and is former China Correspondent for The Independent. With wife Zhang Lijia, he is co-author of the oral history “China Remembers” (Oxford University Press 1999).
This is our major new travelogue talk of 2003. 15 Belgrave Square, where the Great Britain-China Centre is a tenant, belongs to the Society of Chemical Industry. An ideal talk for your friends and guests. 140 seats in a luxury tiered private theatre. Any seats unsold by January 5th will be handed back to members of the Great Britain-China Centre.
EARLY BOOKING FOR THIS MAGICAL EXPERIENCE IS ESSENTIAL!
Reception 6 p.m. with COMPLIMENTARY WINE in the Buttery/Conservatory.
This reception has been generously sponsored by Travel Agents, The Russia House, Chapel Court. Borough High Street, Tel: 020 7403 9933
Tuesday 18th February at The Cardinal Inn, Francis Street. 6.15p.m. for 7.00p.m.
BY PUBLIC DEMAND – A REPEAT TALK!
“BROADCASTING TO RUSSIA BOTH DURING AND AFTER THE COLD WAR”
Dr Elisabeth Robson
(with Leonid Finkelstein in the Chair)
Dr Elisabeth Robson is Head of the Russian Service at the BBC. Over 100 people having booked originally, 42 people were unable to secure seats for the first talk on December 3rd 2002. Only about a further 20 seats left for this second talk.
“He or She who hesitates is lost”. If you want to come, book by return!
Thursday 27th February 2003 in the University of London Union (ULU), Malet Street (Room 3E) at 6.00 p.m.
The EGM begins at 6 pm. Three items on the Agenda.
1) Formal election of the officers and members of the Committee. Proposers and candidates should ensure that their nominations reach the Treasurer by February 1st.
2) Adoption of the Constitution. Please bring your copies with you.
3) The award of Honorary Life Memberships to John Roberts and Iain Elliott in recognition of their long and distinguished service to the GB-USSR Association and to The Britain-Russia Centre.
Talk begins at 7.00 p.m.
“PUSHKIN AND HIS JOURNEY TO ERZERUM”
Dr TIM BINYON
(with Professor Richard Freeborn in the Chair)
Gogol described Pushkin as “an extraordinary and perhaps unique manifestation of the Russian spirit”. Pushkin was indisputably Russia’s greatest poet. His vital passionate poetry changed literature forever. “Eugene Onegin” is arguably his masterpiece.
Dr Tim Binyon in his highly acclaimed biography, the first such major work in any language since 1937, demonstrates that Pushkin’s brief life was more dramatic and turbulent than the figures of his literary imagination. Although since his death Pushkin, the leading light in the Golden Age of Russian Poetry, has attained mythical status, Dr Tim Binyon disentangles the complex and interesting Pushkin from the heroic simplicity of the myth. “Pushkin himself could not have wished for a better biographer”.
Dr Tim Binyon has been lecturing at Oxford since the 1960s. He is Senior Research Fellow at Wadham College, Oxford. Dr Tim Binyon’s monumental book “Pushkin, A Life” will be on sale at the meeting with a discount for members.
Tuesday 11th March in the University of London Union (ULU), Malet Street (Room 3D) 6.15 p.m. for 7.00 p.m.
“RUSSIA. EXPERIMENT WITH A PEOPLE”
Professor Robert Service FBA
(with Alyona Ledyenova in the Chair)
Professor Robert Service in his latest book surveys and analyses life and political developments in the Russian Federation and in the former republics of the USSR since 1901. He finds aspects that are both depressing and encouraging.
Robert Service obtained his MA and PhD at Cambridge. He lectured at Keele University until 1983, when he moved to the School of Slavonic & East European Studies in the Federal University of London, and where he was awarded a Chair in Modern Russian History. He is one of Great Britain’s most distinguished Sovietologists. In 1998 he transferred to St. Antony’s College Oxford. Professor Service is an unrivalled expert in the art of lecturing. Your attention is held throughout, you are riveted!
Alyona Ledyenova is a Lecturer at SSEES in Russian Govt & Political Economy.
“Russia. Experiment with a People” should be on sale at this meeting with a discount for members.
Monday 31st March 2003 in the University of London Union (ULU), Malet Street (Room 3E) 6.15 p.m. for 7.00 p.m.
“HOW RUSSIA IS GOVERNED”
Leonid Vladimirov Finkelstein
THIS TALK WILL BE IN RUSSIAN
Leonid Finkelstein was a departmental Editor in Moscow of the scientific magazine “Knowledge is Power”. He came to the West from the USSR in 1966 and worked as Chief Editor at Radio Liberty for 12 years until 1979. He has also worked for 24 years for the BBC Russian Service.
“A wise elder Statesman”
Tuesday 8th April 2003 n the University of London Union (ULU), Malet Street (Room 3D) 6.15 p.m. for 7.00 p.m.
“DOES PRESIDENT PUTIN REPRESENT ‘YELTSINISM WITHOUT YELTSIN’?”
Professor Peter Reddaway
(with Martin Dewhirst in the Chair)
Peter Reddaway, an eminent world class authority, is Professor of Political Science and International Affairs and a board member at the Institute for European, Russian and Eurasian Studies at George Washington University. From 1986 to 1989, he directed the Kennan Institute for Advanced Russian Studies, which is part of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars.
Martin Dewhirst has recently retired as Senior Lecturer in Soviet Literature in the University of Glasgow.
“In the 1970s and 1980s he did more than any other person in Britain to expose Soviet crimes against dissidents. But in his most recent book “The Tragedy of Russia’s Reforms; Market Bolshevism against Democracy” (745 pages) written with Dmitri Glinski, Peter Reddaway is critical also of the post-Soviet order – or disorder – and of the Western role in its creation.” (Anatol Lieven)
Thursday April 24th 2003 in the University of London Union (ULU) Malet Street (Room 3E) 6.15 p.m. for 7.00 p.m.
Professor Richard Freeborn D.Litt
(with Professor Arnold McMillin in the Chair)
Professor Freeborn talks not only about some of the most powerful novels ever written in any literature, but also about Dostoevsky’s own life.
Professor Freeborn served in the British Embassy in Moscow after World War 2, he was an Oxford Don in the 1950s, was Professor at Manchester, and in 1967 became Professor of Russian Literature at SSEES, and Head of the Dept. of Russian Language & Literature. He is the author of numerous major works, most of them definitive masterpieces. He retired in 1988. He is the greatest living authority in the UK on the nineteenth century Russian Novel.
Arnold McMillin is the current Senior Professor of Russian Literature at SSEES.
A FASCINATING FINALE TO THIS SECOND SESSION.
Tickets are not issued for meetings, but names will be put on the relevant attendance lists on a first come, first served basis. Members are allowed to book places for their guests. Members who have booked for talks and find that they are unable to attend are asked to phone or email the membership Secretary by no later than 5 p.m. on the previous afternoon (Phone Ute Chatterjee on 07866 849599 or email her at www.http://gbrussia.org) so that those on the waiting list can be offered places. If you book too late to get a place you will be notified. If you require confirmation of your booking send a stamped addressed envelope.
The Chairman, Daniel Salbstein can be contacted on 01903 210611.
To avoid the disappointment of finding meetings fully booked
We strongly recommend that you reserve your places by return of post.
Tickets are £5 for members, and £5 for guests. Deferred reservations for Dr Cooke (27/1) and Dr Robson (18/2) paid for in the 1st session are not eligible for the discount.
Those members paying for a minimum of five new meetings pay only £4 per meeting – a discount of 20%!