"A country in which people have been engaged in mutual destruction for half a century does not like to recall the past. What can we expect to happen in a country with a disordered memory? What is a man worth if he has lost his memory?"

"Nationalism, like the ideas of Lev Tolstoy, is an attempt to stop the course of history. Everything leading to separation is the result of license: it smashes what is whole, breaks and pulverizes it into tiny fragments that can never be joined together again. The truth of this has become completely apparent in our century. We have been witness to the process of disintegration. What has it brought us, apart from material and spiritual impoverishment? Even Dostoyevsky, the great seer, the highest point of the nineteenth century, could not ward off the devils that prompted him to abandon the ecumenical idea in favour of national exclusiveness."

- Nadezhda Mandelstam, Hope Abandoned