Baring, Dostoievski, and the Prevaricating Press

In 1927—some twenty-three years after the Menshevik Revolution and a decade after the Bolshevik Revolution in Russia—Maurice Baring published an anthology of his earlier writings, entitled What I Saw in Russia. Lenin had died in 1924, and Stalin was on the verge of securing his own rule, which was largely consolidated by 1928. Therefore, Baring chose to report on those earlier things he had observed in Russia which had once seemed more enduringly illuminating and thus perhaps still of special interest to his fellow Englishmen in the changed circumstances of 1927.

Because Maurice Baring thoughtfully discusses the proper function of the Press and the fitting contribution of the honest War Correspondent, we shall first consider what he wrote freshly in 1905, before going on to consider his deeply appreciative understanding of Dostoievski and why he is cherished also by the Russian people, as well as by the larger world.

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