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Masha Gessen

On Nov. 16, the journalist, activist and author will deliver the fall Atkinson Lecture: “What Russia Can Teach Us About the United States”

Doors open at 6 p.m. on Nov. 16 for Masha Gessen’s 7 p.m. lecture in Smith Auditorium. Tickets are now available for online purchase.

Gessen is a journalist and the author of many books, most recently, “The Future is History: How Totalitarianism Reclaimed Russia,” which is on the shortlist for the National Book Award for nonfiction. In it, Gessen follows the lives of four people born at what promised to be the dawn of democracy in Russia. Each of them came of age with unprecedented expectations, some as the children and grandchildren of the very architects of the new Russia, each with newfound aspirations of their own—as entrepreneurs, activists, thinkers, and writers, sexual and social beings.

As a journalist living in Moscow, Gessen experienced the rise of Vladimir Putin firsthand. In her 2012 bestselling book “The Man Without a Face: The Unlikely Rise of Vladimir Putin,” she gave the chilling account of how a low-level, small-minded KGB operative ascended to the Russian presidency and, in an astonishingly short time, destroyed years of progress and made his country once more a threat to her own people and to the world.

Gessen regularly contributes to The New York Times, The New Yorker, The Washington Post, Harper’s, The New York Review of Books, Vanity Fair, and Slate, among other publications. She lives in New York.

Gessen on “The Daily Show”