My Own Private Archive

I’m back in the archives this week looking for various bits of information to fill gaps in draft chapters.  I discovered that the Vytautas Magnus University Library has a collection of Soviet-era newspapers and magazines so I am working there.  The best part — the materials are all on shelves in the reading room, which means that I don’t have to request them and wait for delivery.  Plus it’s a restricted reading room, which means a quiet place to work because I am the only one there.  Now that I have permission to use the collection, I pick up the key from the main library and let myself into my own private archival work space.

One of my interviewees gave me an article from Mokslas ir Gyvenimas [Science and Life] that condemns hippies in the West.  The article had water damage and the bottom corner of each page was torn away so I wanted to find and copy a complete version.  I didn’t know the publication year but I knew that it was from the late 1960s or early 1970s and not later than 1972.  I did find the article (1967) — plus I found several other interesting articles for my research.

I was quite surprised to see that the cover of the May 1972 issue of Mokslas ir Gyvenimas [Science and Life] featured a large flame with a cityscape behind it.  In a bizarre coincidence, that is the month and year that Romas Kalanta set himself on fire in Kaunas.


About amanda

Creating academic and public environments for the humanities to flourish Researching Soviet and Eastern European history Engaging people and ideas as a writer and interviewer Traveling as much as possible View all posts by amanda

2 responses to “My Own Private Archive

  • Litlocal

    “…that condemns hippies in the West….”

    Haha. I remember that article. Because of it, i got fascinated with hippies since my very very early childhood, and later at school was obsessed too (same like others) 😀 . I lost that magazine and couldn’t find for many years, later when i found it, it was not that interesting already, punks were rocking on horizon by that time :D. (There was 1 article about punks in “Literatūra ir Menas”, with 1 cool photo, and later 1 another article was published in “Nemunas” magazine, and that’s all).

    “…featured a large flame with a cityscape behind it….”

    City behind it obviously is Moscow (see Kremlin), the flame is ‘eternal fire’, well there were 2 very serious days on May: May 1 and May 9, one had expect live translation of military parades on May 9 (until the noon) and very serious reports about rotting capitalism and blooming socialism (since noon till evening) 😀 😀 .

    • amanda

      Hmmm, maybe I can study Soviet punk rockers for my next project… 🙂

      I didn’t think about May 1 and May 9 — that makes sense to have the eternal flame and now that I look again, I can see that it is Moscow. Thanks as always!

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