Orlando Figes is the author of numerous award-winning books on Russian history, including Natasha’s Dance, A People’s Tragedy, The Whisperers, Crimea, Just Send Me Word, Peasant Russia, Civil War and Revolutionary Russia.
Figes was the historical consultant on both the 2012 film Anna Karenina and the Andrew Davies’ BBC adaptation of War & Peace. He is currently Professor of History at Birkbeck College, University of London, and his books have been translated into 32 languages.
Award-winning historian Orlando Figes presents an enthralling, panoramic cultural history of 19th century Europe through the prism of the intertwined lives of opera singer Pauline Viardot, novelist Ivan Turgenev, and connoisseur Louis Viardot – Pauline’s husband. Their friends numbered Flaubert, Chopin, Dickins, Rossini, George Sand, Liszt and Delacroix. They were the arbiters of a pan-European culture who forged a new cosmopolitan age.
Traces of the Past
How do a historian and a literary critic recreate the pasts of people they have never met, with little more than papers and a few objects to go on? Orlando Figes and Nancy K. Miller shared the challenges of building a picture of ordinary lives, with their Jewish Book Week audience, in a discussion of his new collection of letters home from the Gulag and her American family chronicle.
Just Send Me Word: A True Story of Love and Survival in the Gulag and What they Saved: Pieces of a Jewi...