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“freakish hypervictorian ornamentation”

By Architecture, Asides

Thanks to @gtiso’s Best Blog Posts of 2010 I have been intro­duced to Owen Hatherley on Architecture:

Jonathan Meades has an inter­est­ing archi­tec­tur­al the­ory of dic­tat­ori­al longev­ity – that the more a régime embraces kitsch, the more it will be entrenched in power. The Nazis, with their middlebrow neo­clas­si­cism, their Kingsnorthian moun­tain retreats, did­n’t get long – Stalin, mean­while, died of old age, his régime gil­ded by gold leaf and freak­ish hyper­victori­an ornamentation.

[From sit down man, you’re a bloody tragedy: Red Gates]

I think you should check it out, too.

Teacher motivation - Russian-style

By Asides, Current Events

You may ooze bile but you will teach the chil­dren by those books that you will be giv­en and in the way that is needed by Russia. And as to the noble non­sense that you carry in your mis­shapen goat­eed heads, either it will be vent­il­ated out of them or you your­self will be vent­il­ated out of teach­ing.… It is impossible to let some Russophobe shit-stinker (govny­uk), or just any amor­al type, teach Russian his­tory. It is neces­sary to clear the filth, and if it does not work, then clear it by force.

Pavel Danilin, editor-in-chief of and con­trib­ut­or of a chapter to the new, officially-sanctioned, his­tory of Russia high school textbook.

[via The New Republic]