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Detente, the Helsinki Accords and the Soviet Opposition: A Discussion with Dissident Leonid Plyushch

Description: CIUS Seminar Audio Part 1 and 2.

On September 2, 1977, Mr. Leonid Plyushch, a well-known Soviet Ukrainian dissident and former political prisoner presented an Institute seminar entitled "Detente, the Helsinki Accords and the Soviet Opposition: A Discussion with Dissident Leonid Plyushch." Before his dismissal and imprisonment in 1968 Mr. Plyushch worked in the Institute of Cybernetics of the Academy of Sciences of the Ukrainian SSR in Kiev. He was allowed to leave the Soviet Union on January 8, 1976 following an international campaign on his behalf. The chairmen of a number of University departments, as well as several invited guests, attended the seminar. / Mr. Plyushch began by discussing the economic and moral crises facing Soviet society. The present leadership does not allow for an open discussion of the poor state of the Soviet economy and the rising crime rate, and relies on an elaborate system of "disinformation" to conceal these problems. There is a serious lack of information about crime and various forms of deviance in the Soviet Union, and even scientific-technological research is hampered by the prevailing secrecy and by strange (even irrational) demands from above. To continue stifling discussion of the problems, however, will prove fruitless. The contradictions in Soviet society, Plyushch declared, will lead to a political crisis, unless there is greater democratization in all sectors of public life. / The dissidents, those who refuse to go along with the system of the "big lie," demand that the Soviet Union respect its own constitution and the international human rights agreements which it has signed. All sectors of public opinion in the West must ensure that Soviet and western governments do not find some accommodation which would allow for the continuing repression of free thought in the Soviet Union. / The most valuable aspect of the seminar was its interdisciplinary character. During the stimulating question period, Mr. Plyushch, dealt with a wide range of questions on topics such as Soviet scientific policy, child psychology, the theory of games, and structuralism.

Found in CIUS Newsletter Vol 2 Issue 1 (Fall 1977)
Author: CIUS
Publisher: CIUS
Date: September 2, 1977
Contributor: Leonid Plyushch
Language: English, Ukrainian
Original Format: Magnetic tape, audio cassette
Duration: Part 1 - 54:24
Part 2 - 59:02

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CIUS, “Detente, the Helsinki Accords and the Soviet Opposition: A Discussion with Dissident Leonid Plyushch,” CIUS-Archives, accessed May 25, 2020, http://cius-archives.ca/items/show/1695.
Unless otherwise noted, this work is subject to a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International license .