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Afghanistan War

Afghanistan War  

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Overview Page
(1979–1989)Following a military coup in April 1978, the communist People's Democratic Party of Afghanistan took power. The party was riven by sectarian disputes and, in December 1979, the Soviet ...
Alexander Nikolayevich Radishchev

Alexander Nikolayevich Radishchev  

(1749–1802), Russian poet and reformist. The founder of the Russian intelligentsia's radical tradition, Radishchev was a writer and poet whose “Ode to Liberty” inspired the Decembrists when they rose ...
Alexander Solzhenitsyn

Alexander Solzhenitsyn  

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Overview Page
Subject:
Literature
(1918–2008),Russian prose writer. He joined the Red Army in 1941. Arrested in 1945 for remarks critical of Stalin, he was sent to a labour camp where in 1952 he developed stomach cancer. In 1953 he ...
Andrei Sakharov

Andrei Sakharov  

(1921–89)Russian nuclear physicist. Having helped to develop the Soviet hydrogen bomb, he campaigned against nuclear proliferation and called for Soviet–American cooperation. He fought courageously ...
Armenia

Armenia  

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Overview Page
Subject:
History
A region south of the Caucasus in Asia Minor, comprising the Republic of Armenia (see Armenia, Republic of) but also parts of eastern Turkey and northern Iran. Armenian culture dates from the 6th ...
Azerbaijan

Azerbaijan  

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Overview Page
Subject:
History
Oil and gas-rich Azerbaijan has high levels of poverty and a dynastic political successionAround half of Azerbaijan comprises the central lowland area through which flow the two main rivers, the Aras ...
Baltic States

Baltic States  

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Overview Page
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History
(1934)A mutual defence pact between Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania. Soon after World War I there were negotiations for an alliance between all the countries which had recently broken away from the ...
Belarus

Belarus  

A territory formerly also known as Belorussia (White Russia) which had been under Polish and Lithuanian domination for centuries, until it came under Russian control in the late eighteenth century. ...
birch bark

birch bark  

Birch inner bark, cut into strips or rectangles, was commonly used as a writing material (with pen and ink) in and around north India from at least the 4th century ...
Boris Yeltsin

Boris Yeltsin  

(1931–2007)Russian statesman, President of the Russian Federation (1991–9). At first a supporter of Mikhail Gorbachev's reform programme, he soon became its leading radical opponent. In 1990 Yeltsin ...
Casimir III

Casimir III  

(1310–70)King of Poland (1333–70). He consolidated the achievements of his predecessor, Władyslaw I, reorganizing the country's administration, codifying the law, and acquiring territory through ...
Catherine II

Catherine II  

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Overview Page
Subject:
Literature
(1729–96)Empress of Russia (1762–96). A German princess, she was made empress following a plot that deposed her husband Peter III (1728–62). Her attempted social and political reforms were impeded by ...
Central Asian Literatures

Central Asian Literatures  

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Overview Page
Subject:
Religion
Central Asia, or Turkestan, is understood to include present-day Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Turkmenistan, the population of which is predominantly Turkic and Muslim. Today, ...
Chechnya

Chechnya  

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Overview Page
Subject:
Religion
The mountainous northern Caucasus zone is the historic homeland for numerous ethnic groups. For centuries potentially dominant neighbors, be they Christian or Muslim, have viewed the northern ...
Church of Georgia

Church of Georgia  

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Overview Page
Subject:
Religion
The conversion of the Iberian king, Mirian III, probably in 334, was due to St Nino. According to Rufinus, she was a Christian captive; in Georgian tradition she is associated with Jerusalem. In the ...
civil law

civil law  

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Overview Page
Subject:
Law
1 The law of any particular state, now usually called municipal law.2 Roman law.3 A legal system based on Roman law, as distinct from the English system of common law.4 Private law, as opposed to ...
command economy

command economy  

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Overview Page
An economy in which the activities of firms and the allocation of productive resources is determined by government direction rather than market forces.
Commonwealth of Independent States

Commonwealth of Independent States  

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Overview Page
Subject:
History
(CIS)A confederation of independent states, formerly among the constituent republics of the Soviet Union, established in 1991 following a summit in the Belorussian city of Brest at which the USSR was ...
communism

communism  

A theory of classless society with common ownership of property and wealth and centrally planned production and distribution based on the principle ‘from everyone according to their skills, to ...
Decembrist Revolt

Decembrist Revolt  

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Overview Page
The Decembrist revolt took place in late 1825 in Saint Petersburg, Russia, involved a small number of liberal conspirators against the new tsar, Nicholas I (1796–1855; r. 1825–1855), and fizzled ...

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