Download Black Square: Adventures in Post-Soviet Ukraine by Sophie Pinkham PDF

By Sophie Pinkham

A distinct writer’s interesting trip into the guts of a afflicted region.

Ukraine has rebuilt itself over and over within the final century, suffering from an analogous conflicts: corruption, poverty, substance abuse, ethnic clashes, and Russian aggression. Sophie Pinkham observed all this and extra during ten years operating, touring, and reporting in Ukraine and Russia, over a interval that incorporated the Maidan revolution of 2013–14, Russia’s annexation of Crimea, and the consequent battle in japanese Ukraine.

With a prepared eye for the darkish absurdities of post-Soviet society, Pinkham offers a dynamic account of latest Ukrainian existence. She meets―among others―a charismatic health care professional aiding to tender the transition to democracy while he struggles along with his personal drug habit, a Bolano-esque paintings gallerist liable to public nudity, and a Russian Jewish clarinetist agitating for Ukrainian liberation. those interesting personalities, rendered in a daring, unique variety, bring an indelible effect of a rustic at the brink.

Black Square is important studying for someone who needs to benefit not just the political roots of the present clash in Ukraine but additionally the private tales of the folk who stay it each day.

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Black Square: Adventures in Post-Soviet Ukraine

A particular writer’s interesting trip into the guts of a stricken area. Ukraine has rebuilt itself again and again within the final century, laid low with a similar conflicts: corruption, poverty, substance abuse, ethnic clashes, and Russian aggression. Sophie Pinkham observed all this and extra during ten years operating, touring, and reporting in Ukraine and Russia, over a interval that integrated the Maidan revolution of 2013–14, Russia’s annexation of Crimea, and the consequent battle in jap Ukraine.

Extra resources for Black Square: Adventures in Post-Soviet Ukraine

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In the current system, they would never be allowed to go to school and would probably never be adopted. But the orphanage was only for children under five, and Irkutsk had no facility for older HIV-positive children. There was no plan for the children’s future. At the AIDS Center the next day, Dr. Santa told us that as far as Irkutsk’s AIDS patients were concerned, everything was absolutely fine. He showed us his office and a waiting room, neither of which contained any people. When pressed, he admitted that it might be bad when Irkutsk had thousands of patients with full-blown AIDS and no medication.

I graduated from high school in the year 2000. A year earlier the seniors had chanted ninety-nine; as we celebrated that June, my friends and I chanted zero and laughed. Panic about Y2K had come to nothing; the world hadn’t ended with the old millennium. But disaster arrived the next year. From her high school classroom in downtown Manhattan, my younger sister saw two planes hit the Twin Towers. She and her classmates watched tiny figures leap from the burning buildings. Outside, FBI agents told the students, “Don’t look back, and run”: north, away from the fast-moving cloud of dust and death.

His eyelids drooped over bored, off-kilter black eyes. With his beaklike nose, he resembled a dissolute vulture. Inexperienced though I was, it was obvious to me that he was not a palliateur or an oncologist: he looked more like a lost member of the Ramones, or Iggy Pop’s Eastern European cousin. I introduced myself, just as he plucked the last orange from the bartender’s bowl and started eating it, peel and all. With a heavy Russian accent but an easy drawl, he told me that his name was Alik. He offered me his hand; the skin was soft and loose.

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