Published: July 6th 2008July 2nd 2008
Murmansk Coat of Arms
Murmansk Coat of Arms with the addition of a few communist symbols
I have a soft spot for communist symbols, communist statues, Lenin statues
etc. I don't like what they stand for, but I like the way they look. One reason for that is probably that you can take excellent photos of them, and I like to take photos.
In the years prior to the fall of the Soviet Union people in the communist world were to be constantly reminded of how great a system communism is and so on. Therefore every town had a Lenin statue, there were always a few streets in each town named after Lenin and Karl Marx, statues of war heroes dotted the cities and on city walls you could find plaques conmemorating communist leaders or a visit by Lenin or something. The symbol of hammer and sickle
was to be found everywhere. Sometimes even entire cities were named after a former leader, like Karl-Marx-Stadt, Stalingrad and Leningrad.
This was going on not only in the Soviet Union. The situation was similar in all of the Eastern Bloc. When the communist system eventually collapsed in the late 80-ies and early 90-ies there were different ways to deal with these communist symbols and statues
Plaque with Lenin picture
Plaque with Lenin picture
and everything else.
In many countries they pulled down the statues that symbolised the hated communist system and threw them away. They wanted a fresh start and didn't want to be reminded of the past.
Leningrad was renamed and is today known as St Petersburg
Karl-Marx-Stadt was renamed and is today known as Chemnitz
Stalingrad was renamed and is today known as Volgograd
In many cities the streets were renamed. However, that has caused some confusion because now people tend to use both names and thereby effectively making a lot of streets having two names. One official and one inofficial.
In Budapest in Hungary they pulled down the statues but put them back up in an open air museum
. A similar park can be found in Grutas
not far from Vilnius in Lithuania.
In Belarus they liked everything the way it was so nothing has changed. If you want to get a glipse of the Soviet Union, go to Belarus!
Also in the Kola Peninsula they seem to like things the way they were. I can't compare with the situation before 1991 but in Murmansk they have kept a lot of the
The Lenin Statue in Murmansk
statues and Lenin Avenue is still named Lenin Avenue and Karla Marx Street has not been renamed either. It is also clear that at least some of the old plaques are being maintained. I saw signs that clearly have been painted in the last two or three years.
Well, I am not going to write any more text for this entry on the blog. Instead I let the photo do the talking. So look at the pictures and go Back in the USSR
There are more photos below