Tag Archives: patriarchy

The Cutesy Pie Vocabulary of 21st-Century Fascism: “Dvushechka” and “Jam Day”

By Sergey Chernov
The St. Petersburg Times
Wednesday, October 10, 2012

The Russian language is believed to be rich and highly nuanced.

This made foreign journalists think hard about how to translate the word dvushechka, used by President Vladimir Putin in reference to the two-year sentences the imprisoned women of the feminist punk collective Pussy Riot were given in August for an anti-Putin performance in a Moscow cathedral.

“The whole case ended up in court and the judge slipped them a dvushechka,” Putin said when interviewed for his 60th birthday television special, which aired Sunday.

Dvushechka is a vulgar diminutive of “two,” and so news agency Agence France-Presse translated it as “a little two,” while the Associated Press news agency chose to avoid the subtleties and translated the word as a plain “two years.”

This is a pity because the Russian word says a lot about the person who uses it. It sounds loutish, somewhat tender and almost lustful, giving the idea that a man who has it in his vocabulary has a certain amount of power, finds nearly sexual pleasure in imposing it on those who cannot defend themselves and does not care what others think about it.

In classic Russian literature, diminutives are frequently used by the most repulsive characters.

Using the word about prison terms for anybody — even if they were not young women, two of whom have young children — suggests a sinister background and evil frame of mind.

After dropping his dvushechka, Putin, however, was quick to remark, “I have nothing to do with it.”

According to Putin, Pussy Riot’s performance was not political, but pure hooliganism, for which they “got what they asked for.”

If anybody had any doubts about his direct involvement, now they should not.

Maria Alyokhina, 24, and Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, 22, were arrested March 3, while Yekaterina Samutsevich, 30, was arrested March 16. The three have been held in a Moscow detention center since then.

Their crime consisted of entering the church when there was no service being held and trying to videotape a music performance, which was stopped by the church’s guards after less than 60 seconds.

Like Pussy Riot’s other performances, it was directed against Putin and was called “Holy Mother of God, Drive Putin Away.”

Putin expressed his satisfaction about the verdict three days before a postponed appeal hearing, scheduled for Wednesday, Oct. 10. The women’s defense team said it sees his remarks as applying pressure on the court.

But quite frankly, an official of such stature has many other, more discreet ways to give orders to the court than via television.

A number of protests are planned around the world Wednesday, but not in St. Petersburg, where a rally was held Oct. 1. Check Pussy Riot’s support websites for times and locations.


Meanwhile, in a videotaped birthday card that resembles a deliberate and total inversion of Pussy Riot’s brief performance in the Moscow cathedral and their entire short career prior to that, the “women’s movement” Otlichnitsy (“Teacher’s Pets”) invoked a frequent and irritatingly cutesy-pie play on words whereby den’ rozhdeniia (“birthday”) is turned into den vareniia (“jam day”) and presented the so-called Russian president with several jars of jam, including orange jam (by the woman on the right in the back row) “so that our country is never shaken by orange revolutions and there is more vitamin C in our politics.” (Thanks to Comrade Olga for the heads-up.)

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Filed under feminism, gay rights, film and video, political repression, racism, nationalism, fascism, Russian society

The United Russia Guide to Winning Hearts and Minds. Strategy 5: Turn Reality Upside Down, Accuse Voters of Being “Hysterical” Wives. If That Doesn’t Work, Kidnap Their Kids and Threaten to Cripple Them

And now a special treat for all our readers struggling to master the “great and mighty” Russian tongue:

Here’s what we learned from watching this campaign advert:

  • “Everything will be okay” (in Russia).
  • According to polls, between forty and sixty percent of voters “plan” to vote for United Russia on December 4.
  • The disembodied voice narrating the clip has “personally talked to thousands of people over the past week.”
  • Something about Wi-Fi, flat screen TVs, and other gadgets: they were (apparently) invented by United Russia.
  • When it asked her “what has changed for the better during the past five years,” one young lady in Ivanovo told the disembodied voice that she now can go to a “3D movie theater” with her girlfriend.
  • Another person likes the fact that now “fat ducks” float in the river rather than “rusty refrigerators.”
  • Hence: everything is already okay (in Russia).
  • Everything sucks everywhere else: financial crisis, people (especially “darkies”) demonstrating in the streets, etc., etc.
  • The state is the husband, society is the wife.
  • The “wife” (society) can “divorce” the “husband” (the state) if “she” likes and run off with Zyuganov, Zhirinovsky or Navalny, but then when things go sour, don’t come running back to me.
  • Part of the reason that the “wife” (society) has these funny thoughts of running away from the “husband” (the state) is that she spends a lot of time surfing “social networks.” These cause her to “lose her mind.”
  • “People are smiling, the future exists, problems are being solved one after another.”
  • “The brain is used to live better and richer, not to ‘go into hysterics’ at the drop of a hat.”
  • It would be “unfair” to Medvedev if on December 4, 5, and 6, the only people on the streets of Moscow were those people who think they live in an “awful country.”
  • The disembodied voice will “personally” mobilize and transport “15,000 people” to Moscow on December 4.
  • If the disembodied voice and the 15,000 people it has assembled and transported to Moscow encounter anyone in the streets of Moscow who is “dissatisfied,” the disembodied voice will tell these inexplicably disgruntled people, “Smile! Everything will be okay!”


Meanwhile, back in the dark land of the inexplicably disgruntled…

December 1, 2011

On December 1, Yana Bannikova, a minor and the daughter of Olga Bannikova, secretary of the Bratsk CPRF municipal committee, was abducted in the vicinity of the Bratsk Music College, on Komsomolskaya Street. The 16-year-old was forcibly put into a car without license plates. Three masked men were involved in the abduction. After badly frightening the girl, they demanded that she tell her mother to stop campaigning for the CPRF. Otherwise, they promised to cripple the girl.

A kidnapping report has been filed with the Investigative Committee.

Thanks (so to speak) to Comrades M. and D. for the heads-up.

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