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Masha Gessen speaks on current LGBTQ activism in Russia

Masha Gessen will speak about current LGBTQ activism in Russia

Masha Gessen’s talk will be the opening event for the 2017 University of Virginia Slavic Forum “RE:Constructions, Memory and Imagination.” 

A Russian and American journalist, Masha Gessen, is the intrepid chronicler of Pussy Riot in Words Will Break Cement. An outspoken activist, Masha undergoes great risk to write truthfully about human rights violations, gender issues, and the current cultural and political climate in Russia. As a journalist living in Moscow, Gessen experienced the rise of Vladimir Putin firsthand. In her 2012 bestselling book The Man Without a Face: The Unlikely Rise of Vladimir Putin, she gave the chilling account of how a low-level, small-minded KGB operative ascended to the Russian presidency and, in an astonishingly short time, destroyed years of progress and made his country once more a threat to her own people and to the world. Gessen regularly contributes to The New York TimesThe New YorkerThe Washington PostHarper’sThe New York Review of BooksVanity Fair, and Slate, among other publications. For more information see speaker’s bio at