Russia's Place in the World

Bridget Kendall
19th March 2018, 7:00pm
The University of Manchester, University Place

One hundred years ago, Russia shocked the world when it swept away centuries of tsarist autocracy and replaced it with a revolutionary regime which was to usher in over seventy years of one party Communist rule. In 1991 it stunned the world again when Soviet Communism collapsed and a new Russian state was born. Throughout this time and still today, Russia’s relations with its European neighbours have waxed and waned. At times it has been an ally of the West, at times seen as a threat. So how are we to understand  Russia’s place in the world? And is Russia’s history a help or a hindrance in trying to work out what might come next?  


Refreshments will be served in ‘The Drum’ on the ground floor from 6 p.m. There will also be a stall selling Bridget Kendall's new book ‘The Cold War: a new oral history of life between East and West’ in the same area prior to the lecture.



About the Speaker

Bridget Kendall is the first female Master of Peterhouse, Cambridge University’s oldest College, a position she took up in 2016.

Bridget joined the BBC in 1983 as a trainee for the BBC World Service and over her career she became one of the Corporation’s most respected international correspondents, with 30 years of experience of reporting from the field. She served as BBC Moscow correspondent and BBC Washington correspondent. Since 1998 she has held the senior role of BBC Diplomatic correspondent, reporting on and analysing major global crises and conflicts, and their impact on Britain and the world.

As a former Moscow correspondent and fluent Russian speaker, she has a particular interest in Russia and its relations with the West.  She witnessed the collapse of the Soviet Union at first hand, as well as conflicts in Chechnya, Georgia, Tadjikistan, Kosovo, Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Syria and Ukraine. She has conducted interviews with a range of international leaders, including British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, US President George H Bush, Hillary Clinton, King Abdullah of Jordan, President Yushchenko of Ukraine, United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki Moon, Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev and President Dmitry Medvedev of Russia. She has also twice conducted long interviews with President Vladimir Putin, broadcast live from inside the Kremlin in 2001 and 2006.

Since 2008 she was the principal host of The Forum, the BBC World Service flagship discussion programme which is also broadcast on Radio Four, and which brings together top global thinkers from a range of disciplines to highlight cutting edge research and explore new ideas. Her book The Cold War: A New Oral History of Life Between East and West came out in July 2017, accompanying a landmark Radio 4 radio series.                                                                                                                           

She was the first woman to win the coveted James Cameron Award for distinguished journalism in 1992 in recognition of her reports on events in the former Soviet Union. Later that year, she won a Bronze Sony Radio Award for Reporter of the Year and received an MBE in the 1994 New Year's Honours list. More recently in 2015 she won a special award for International Reporting from the Political Studies Association.




Menu for Supper

Steamed salmon with a white wine sauce


New potatoes and vegetables


Stuffed peppers with tomato sauce


New York cheese cake with raspberry coulis

Fresh fruit salad


Tea and coffee

The cost of supper will also include a glass of wine or juice.