Teddy had few “official” meetings in the USSR. A factory here. A collective farm there. Maybe a school or two. And there was one question Teddy’s hosts always asked: “Why are you still lynching Blacks?” American racism was a global issue during the Cold War. And pointing to it was a strike at America’s Achilles heel. Soviet media devoted a lot of time to the Civil Rights Movement. And Teddy arrived in the USSR just when Martin Luther King was assassinated. So, just what was this Soviet concern for American Blacks? Was it merely a whataboutism, a way to deflect American criticism of Soviet life? Or was there something more to it?
Teddy Goes to the USSR is written, edited and produced by Sean Guillory.
Thanks to Laura Belmonte, Dina Fainberg, Andrew Jacob, Maxim Mastusevich and Don Meredith Roman for their participation. Special thanks to Teddy Roe for sharing his story, diary, and photographs.
Voice over by Eve Barden.
Music is by Blue Dot Sessions and Eliot Holmes.
Funding for Teddy Goes to the USSR was provided by the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the Russian, East European and Eurasian Studies Center at the University of Pittsburgh and monthly patrons of the SRB Podcast.
If you want to learn more about Teddy’s trip and the Soviet Union go to the series website teddytoussr.com.
And if you’re enjoying Teddy Goes to the USSR, please consider becoming a patron of the SRB podcast so we can do more narrative audio. You can become a patron at https://www.patreon.com/seansrussiablog
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