The history and sociology of the telephone in Russian society have only slowly become the object of serious study. The scope of this essay is limited to the following two topics: first, the forms of use, in pre-revolutionary Russia and the Soviet Union, of the telephone as a means of communication, potentially universally available and “horizontal” but actually restricted by “vertical” forces; and second, the symbolism that accumulated around this means of communication in Russian and Soviet culture.
Professor emeritus of Slavic languages, writer, translator. Former head of the Culture Department at Swedish Radio. Initiator of Svenskt översättarlexikon [Swedish encyclopedia of translators]. Published the anthology Konsten att översätta [The art of translation], 2008. Authored Tjechov och friheten – en litterär biografi [Chekhov and freedom – a literary biography], 2010.