Old Saint Basil's Cathedral in MoscowJohnson's Russia List title and scenes of Saint Petersburg
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#4 - JRL 7260
Russia puts some of its Bolshevik-era archives on public view

Moscow, 22 July: Federal Security Service [FSB] archives concerning the expulsion of the intelligentsia from Soviet Russia in 1922 are to be made public for the first time. They form part of an exhibition called Filosofskiy Parokhod [The Philosopher's Steamer] that opened today at the federal archives building on Pirogovka street.

"This exhibition testifies to the FSB's wish to shine some light into the dark corners of our country's history," reporters were told by the head of the FSB's archives directorate, Vasiliy Khristoforov. The secret services have provided 150 documents, including on the investigations into religious philosophers Nikolay Berdyayev, Lev Karsavin, Semen Frank and Nikolay Losskiy. They and another 150 members of the professional and educated classes - doctors, engineers, scholars and historians - were expelled from St Petersburg on two steamers and sent to Germany. These ships were subsequently dubbed "philosopher's steamers" by emigres.

A number of documents concern the crushing of political parties and confiscation by force of church property. Apart from FSB material, the exhibition contains papers from the Russian Presidential Archive and the Russian State Archive of Literature and Culture. It will remain open until 7 September.

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