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15 Russian authors not to be featured by the Moscow House of Books
Moscow’s central House of Books bookstore told its staff not to feature books by fifteen Russian authors listed in an internal memo, writes Ksenia Sobchak on her Bloody Lady Telegram channel. Two-thirds of that list are writers officially declared to be “foreign agents” by the Russian Justice Ministry.
Sobchak’s video explains that undesirable authors from the list cannot be shelved facing the customer, or featured on the “recommended” tables. “Be attentive and keep an eye on the displays; external organizations are inspecting us regularly,” the management advised the bookstore’s employees.
Here’s the list of authors whose book spines must be “stuck in a dark corner,” according to a House of Books staff member:
- Boris Akunin
- Natalia Baranova
- Dmitry Bykov
- Dmitry Glukhovsky
- Vladimir Kara-Murza
- Andrey Makarevich
- Alexander Nevzorov
- Leonid Parfyonov
- Sergey Parkhomenko
- Alexey Polyarinov
- Yevgeny Ponasenkov
- Ekaterina Shulman
- Lyudmila Ulitskaya
- Victor Vakhshtayn
- Mikhail Zygar
The list notes its last revision date of October 15, but it’s unclear how long the House of Books has been limiting the display of certain authors.
One of the employees told a customer that Mikhail Zygar’s “All the Kremlin’s Men” and a number of other books by authors from the list was on sale, at 20 percent off, since the store is “getting rid of such authors.”
The House of Books made no formal comment on Sobchak’s report.
On October 21, the Russian novelist and playwright Boris Akunin wrote that his name had been removed from playbills at two theaters currently staging his plays — Moscow’s Russian Academic Youth Theater, and St. Petersburg’s Alexandrinsky theater. “I guess, next we’ll have books without the author’s name on the cover,” Akunin expects.
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