Toppling Lenin 20 Years Too Late

September 29, 2014 11:52 AM

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Toppling Lenin 20 Years Too Late

The Lenin statue in Kharkiv was the biggest in Ukraine. Perhaps that's why it lasted longer than most, escaping what has been called the Leninfall -- the mass teardown of monuments to the Soviet Union's founder that Ukraine's Euromaidan revolution set off this year. It is now toppled, too, but it's hard to see what that means anymore.

Lenin is difficult to get rid of, as anyone born in the former Soviet Union knows. In the 1980s, when the sculptor mother of a Moscow artist I know died, he found her apartment dominated by an enormous statue of Lenin. For Soviet sculptors, ubiquitous Lenin was bread and butter. This particular figu...

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