Chiswick Book Festival 2020 – Assignment Moscow

Reporting on Russia from Lenin to Putin

By James Rodgers

James Rodgers was the BBC’s correspondent in Moscow from 2006 – 2009  but first went to the Soviet Union in 1987 to study the language. As he went from student to working journalist, he reported on the transition of the Soviet Union in to a free market Russia, an exciting time to be based in Moscow.

Now he teaches international journalism to students at City University, but took a sabbatical to go back to Russia to research Assignment Moscow – Reporting on Russia from Lenin to Putin. In it he describes how from the earliest days of the 1917 revolution foreign journalists were mistrusted as spies – which in some cases they were.

Bridget Osborne, Editor of The Chiswick Calendar, talks to James Rodgers about some of the foreign correspondents who have reported Russia over the decades – colourful characters whose influence through their reporting was wide-reaching and not always positive.

Episode Length: 43:05