Russian Poet Accused of Militant Activities

In Global Trade Talk by Siobhan O'Leary

By Siobhan O’Leary

Russian poet Yulia Privedennaya, leader of a youth commune called PORTOS (an acronym for the slightly Orwellian-sounding “Poetic Society for Development of the Theory of the Common Good”) has been given a 4 1/2-year suspended sentence after a Moscow Court ruled that the commune was being operated as an illegal militant group.

According to the Moscow Times, air guns, hunting rifles and a pump rifle — which were legally owned by PORTOS members — were found at the camp. Several of the teens at the camp also claimed to have been held against their will.

Privedennaya has maintained her innocence and said that the commune’s goal was to educate its members through poetry. Several activists and PORTOS members who originally testified against her have now come to her defense and she plans to appeal the decision.

And you thought your book club was contentious!

About the Author

Siobhan O'Leary

Siobhan O’Leary is a literary agent, translator and writer based in Berlin. She previously worked in the Foreign Rights department of the Crown Publishing Group (Random House) and at the publishing consulting firm Market Partners International.