Estonian history

30 years since the most important Singing Revolution concert

On 11 September 1988, an estimated 300,000 people gathered at the Tallinn Song Festival Grounds to listen speeches by the Estonian independence movement activists and sing songs. On 11 September 1988, the Song Festival Grounds hosted arguably the largest mass gathering the Estonian capital had ever seen, when an estimated …

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Review: “Juured”, an Estonian documentary about women who are not ashamed of their wounds

Six Estonian female film directors share their intimate experiences and show us that facing pain is an act of freedom. Is it a coincidence that the words “juuksed” (hair) and “juured” (roots) are so assonant in Estonian? Perhaps they share more than a vague sound. Almost all cultures consider hair …

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PICTURES: Estonia’s Victory Day celebrations

Estonia celebrated the country’s Victory Day on 23 June with a large military parade on the Tallinn Song Festival Grounds; smaller events took place across the country. Victory Day, celebrated annually, marks the decisive battle in 1919 during the Estonian War of Independence in which the country’s military forces and …

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Novelist: Estonians don’t like Russians because the Soviet occupation denied them choices

Andrey Ivanov, an ethnic Russian Estonian novelist, says in a new and well-regarded novel, “A Handful of Dust,” that the reason for Estonians not liking Russians is that Russians, as part of the Soviet occupation, denied Estonians their right to make choices. In the novel, the Russian protagonist returns to …

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“Seltsimees Laps” – not only a movie about Stalinist tyranny, but also on Estonian modesty

The Tallinn-based Italian expat, Milena Spigaglia, shares her thoughts on the new Estonian movie about the Stalinist tyranny, “Seltsimees Laps” (“The Little Comrade”). When I was a child, I asked my mother – who passed away a few years ago and simply loved to take care of her garden – …

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140 years ago, wolves still ate people in Estonia

One hundred and forty years ago, it was a common occurrence that wolves attacked people – and kidnapped children – instead of being afraid of them; nowadays, however, the newly-elected national animal of Estonia usually keeps to itself. This article was originally published by the University of Tartu blog, authored …

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The day the Soviets invaded Britain to capture an Estonian

The Shetland Islands are the northern-most part of the United Kingdom. A group of islands situated between the Atlantic and the North Sea, they are a windy, cold and lonely place. For one Estonian fisherman, they proved to be quite terrifying.* The waters around the Shetland Islands are well known …

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An exhibit at Stanford Libraries presents 100 years of Baltic history

A new exhibit at Stanford Libraries, called “The Baltic Way”, aims to tell the complicated history of Estonia, Latvia and Lithuania in the 20th century and considers the countries’ prospects and challenges in the 21st. The exhibit, presented in partnership with the Hoover Institution Library & Archives and Stanford Libraries, …

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