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Page last updated at 09:55 GMT, Wednesday, 10 March 2010

'Art and evil can go together'


Vyacheslav Molotov, Stalin's right hand man during the Soviet purges, was a butcher on a mass scale, but he held a secret passion for the written word and owned a huge library. Dr Rachel Polonsky, a Cambridge academic who lived in Moscow for a decade, chanced upon fragments of his library in a grand old mansion flat in central Moscow and has written a new book about the library.

Dr Polonsky and Robert Service, professor of Russian History at St Antony's College, Oxford, and biographer of Trotsky, reflect on Molotov's life.


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