Book Review Rasputin

Book Review Rasputin - Lena Lander April 17, 2007 HIS 451...

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Lena Lander April 17, 2007 HIS 451 Book Review: The Rasputin File by Edvard Radzinsky 1
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“Ra- Ra- Rasputin, lover of the Russian queen…” is how the famous ABBA chorus goes. This one line is a perfect example of the many rumors and myths surrounding the Siberian wanderer, who became so important to Tsarina Alexandra at the eve of the 1905 revolution. Did Grigory Rasputin have an affair with Alix? Was he a saint or simply a peasant? How did he become such an influence on the royal court? How did he even get there? To answer these questions is the purpose of Edvard Radzinsky’s The Rasputin File , in which he uncovers many of these myths through a file that had been missing for decades. Edvard Radzinsky was born in Moscow in 1936 and is also a Rurikid prince and therefore a nobleman. He graduated from the Moscow Historical Archive Institute, and is one of Russia’s most famous and respected playwrights, TV personalities and historian. He began his carrier with writing plays, which were at first about such themes as love and commitment. Later when Russia was under Soviet rule his themes ranged from personal responsibility to the struggle between ideas and power in such works as Conversations with Socrates and Lunin . His works in the field of Russian history include The Last Tsar: The Life and Death of Nicholas II , Stalin: The First In-Depth Biography Based on Explosive New Documents From Russia's Secret Archives , and Alexander II: The Great Last Tsar, which are all part of his series Mysteries of History . Radzinsky has been 2
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criticized for using his close ties to the Yeltsin government in order to gain access to special, secret archives in Russia. These archives are however how he found the “lost file” on Rasputin that helped clear up many of the mysteries surrounding him. Therefore it is fair to say that he used his status to finally present the truth, not only in The Rasputin File but also in his controversial biography of Stalin. Although his books are historical accounts, and not fiction, they are written for the
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This essay was uploaded on 04/17/2008 for the course ANT 206 taught by Professor Smiley during the Fall '08 term at N. Arizona.

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Book Review Rasputin - Lena Lander April 17, 2007 HIS 451...

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