This week our podcast is devoted to the journalist Yury Shchekochikhin, who was born on June 9, 1950. He would have turned 70 this year. Our guests are the executive director of the Moscow PEN Centre, Nadezhda Azhgikhina, director of the Media Rights Protection Centre Galina Arapova and chair of the Yabloko party Nikolai Rybakov. Our podcast consists of two parts. In the first part we talk about Yury Shchekochikhin as a journalist in the context of his time – above all, as a journalist during the era of Gorbachev’s perestroika. In the second half we ask what does it mean to be a journalist in today’s world, in today’s Russia?
This podcast is in the Russian language.
The music is from Stravinsky’s Elegy for Solo Viola, played here by Karolina Errera.
On 9 June 2020 the Yabloko party, of which Yury Shchekochikhin was a leading member, organized a zoom marathon in which many who knew and loved Yury Shchekochikhin took part, either talking about him or reading extracts from his writings (click on the link to see the recording of the event on YouTube).
Sergei Nikitin writes on Facebook: The conversation that Simon Cosgrove and I had last Sunday was dedicated to the memory of Yury Shchekochikhin. On 9th June he would have turned 70. Yury Petrovich has not been with us now for 17 years. His was a strange death, that many suspect was a murder. It deprived us of the pleasure of admiring the talent of this brilliant journalist. Yesterday’s meeting on the Internet brought together the most interesting interlocutors: Nadezhda Azhgikhina, herself a wonderful journalist and widow of Yury Petrovich; Galina Arapova, director of the Mass Media Rights Centre, and Nikolay Rybakov, chair of the Yabloko party. I admit, I myself listened to our interlocutors with the greatest interest as memories of Yury Shchekochikhin melded smoothly into a discussion about the nature of journalism today. We remembered this wonderful man, an extraordinarily courageous journalist and politician. We talked about the current generation of journalists, about students, about the fate of journalism in our country – at both federal and regional levels. The hour flew by quickly, but we managed to talk about a great many things.
Simon Cosgrove adds: If you want to listen to this podcast on the podcasts.com website and it doesn’t seem to play, please download by clicking on the three dots to the right. A summary of some of the week’s events in Russia relevant to human rights can be found on our website here.