Partice J Confer

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Reader struggles with russian words

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Reviewed: 03-14-18

This book does an excellent job of both emotionally and quantitatively exploring the GULAG system and various related trends throughout Soviet history. I highly recommend consuming this book in some form.
However, the narrator has A LOT of trouble with russian words and names. Im a russian speaking student of russian history; I can recognize the names she was trying to say and it was just annoying rather than confusing. Im worried, though, that people new to russian history will be confused by the inconsisted pronunciation of certain names and think, for example, that BerIa and BEria are different people. Or YEzhov and YezhOV (both the stress and nature of the o change in these). Yagoda is occasionally "Yogada." So while some mispronunciations are consistent and should only be a problem if you want to spell the name later (ex. "Derzherzhinsky" for Dzerzhinsky and "Vladvivostok" for Vladivostok), some will vary wildly and could be an issue.

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