Wednesday, October 12, 2005

The Glavit

The Russian empire has a long history of censorship extending from the 1850s under the Tsar. It was easy to co-op this practice by the Bolsheviks after the 1917 Revolution. The effects of this activity persisted into the 1980s. In this sense the Russian peoples have endured the longest censorship this century reflecting policy of the USSR.

In the spring of 1918 a decree separated the church and state. The central censorship office was to become known as the Glavit in 1922. This office had absolute power to suppress political dissidence in the arts and media.

Lenin and Trotsky however did permit some writers and artists creative freedom under stipulations that they would not engage in civil dissident acts.

A small avante garde movement emerged between 1915 and 1932. The permissiveness of freedom would soon end under Stalin. Under this government a more systematic methodology to preventing authorship, printing publishing, and importing literature occurred.

Adapted from:
Mette Newth
Norway July 2001

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