Download e-book for iPad: CultureShock! Russia by Anna Pavlovskaya

By Anna Pavlovskaya

ISBN-10: 076146056X

ISBN-13: 9780761460565

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Example text

It was built by foreign builders in the European style and has always been considered to be the intellectual centre, slightly cold and ‘high society’, but better educated and more civilised than the bread and salt (gifts traditionally offered to arriving guests) hospitality of Moscow. Saint Petersburg was an imperial city from the moment it was founded, a concentration of state and political power. And this was one of the reasons why the Bolsheviks decided to move the capital back to Moscow in 1918, to a city which did not have so many close ideological ties with the overthrown imperial house.

Russia knows each other, they are always ready to help and to share their joys and sorrows. Nowadays people are being crowded into large elite blocks of flats, which may well be more beautiful and more convenient, but the old Moscow courtyard is remembered with nostalgia and longing. Travelling about Russia outside the towns is very difficult. There are none of the usual conveniences and comforts. Often there are not even roads and you have to walk. But those who have set themselves the task of understanding the mysterious Russian soul will be unable to do so until they have visited Russian villages.

So external appearances can be deceptive. Winter The most widespread stereotype about Russia concerns the cold, snowy winter and everything that goes with it. The image of Russia as a cold and snowbound country is characteristic in literature from all periods, and is still with us today. Travellers in the 19th century who published the diaries of their travels undoubtedly bewitched their readers with phrases such as ‘here you can feel the breath of winter’ or ‘outside the window, Russian men were walking in their indispensable fur hats which protect them from the cold’.

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CultureShock! Russia by Anna Pavlovskaya


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