So now it is a monolith state with tall, blond leggy girls who promote themselves as the children of power. — Nina Khrushcheva, New School Nabokov scholar, great-granddaughter of Nikita Khrushchev.
By my admittedly strange standards, this continuing series of Russia reportage almost absolves the New York Times of its sundry crimes against its readership. A mildly popular parlor game when the Iron Curtain was up asked bored foreign policy types to conjure up counterfactuals concerning a certain German victory over the Soviets circa 1943. The logic of bipolarity was tested against the concept of a Continent-straddling Nazi commonwealth. Thin-blooded fun was had at the expense of the French; heavy undertones of what Pynchon personified as Katje Borgesius in Gravity’s Rainbow appeared throughout.
And now! It’s like the Nazis never committed any Holocaust, and have no nukes aimed at our heads! Listen:
Ms. Amirkhanova, who is the granddaughter of Rasul Gamzatov, a well-known poet, used to date Boris Yeltsin Jr., the grandson of the former Russian president, and has attended Paris fashion shows with Ms. Zhukova and other It Girls. “If they work in fashionable jobs, if they wear a mix of designer and high street clothes, if they go on spiritual retreats in Tibet and drink green tea and do yoga and have iPhones, other people will follow,” she said.
There is some historical precedent for this phenomenon. In czarist times, members of the nobility followed the doings of the ruler’s entourage. And in some ways the new Moscow high society replicates the social structure of the old Soviet caste system, in which children of the nomenklatura attended the same elite schools and social events (although without blog coverage).
The immense appeal of the Pink Police State to bored, anxious, libidinously overstimulated/frustrated Westerners should be underrated at our own risk. Yes, our American version will not be identical. Giuliani is no Putin, in more ways than one. But our blonde beasts of prey can only gaze jealously upon theirs — until they succeed mingling the gene pools. Trust me, they will. Both sides have a vested interest. It is their destiny.
Ms. Chilingarova, the daughter of the polar explorer, is also working on her brand. Next week, she plans to introduce her own magazine, called Pride, for and about the Russian jet set.
“It’s called Pride not like Pride and Prejudice, but like a pride of lions because, in Russian, our name for people who go out is social lions,” she said, using the Russian term for a social animal.
Instead of fear and distress at the new Russian vanguard of new Western Civilization, expect the response to be: rrrraow.