Behind The Iron Curtain: Body Revealed

With all the controversy surrounding local exhibit of dead bodies I was reminded that this is not my first time not attending a viewing of a preserved cadaver. Thus, ground-breaking series “Behind the Iron Curtain” continues with a short new installment: Lenin’s Mausoleum.

For over 80 years the Soviet and then the Russian people lined up on Moscow’s Red Square to view an embalmed body of the leader of the Great October Socialist Revolution Vladimir Illyich Lenin. V.I. Lenin died on January 21, 1924 and his body was on display ever since, with the exception of WWII and some maintenance downtime. The story of the Mausoleum (or Tomb) is sufficiently told in Wikipedia, so there is not too much left to add. Although I’ve been to Moscow many times and visited Kremlin and Red Square I never had any desire to stand in line for many hours for a brief moment with the famous stiff. There were plenty of schmucks willing to do it without me.

When I was growing up, majority of people stopped thinking that Lenin was a second coming of Jesus and grew skeptical about the whole socialism idea. Jokes about Lenin and other Soviet leaders became common although still told in a circle of friends only. It always puzzled me who were the millions of idiots waiting in line to see the Tomb. At one time Lenin was joined by a corpse of Stalin for a “double the fun” experience, but Stalin was later kicked out for being a tyrant. Since then Lenin is all by himself silently watching millions of people pass by his bulletproof sarcophagus. Millions of people whose life he touched in one way or another.

There was a lot of talk about finally burying him next to his mother, but all these years later it still causes too much controversy to deal with it.

Lenin’s Body
It was scary when alive
Scary still

There is a virtual reality tour of the Mausoleum, but I am not sure if it works and it requires a plug-in.

  • I don’t think the bodies you mention compare with what is being shown in KC. I want to see more about the workings of the human body. And I will be there.

  • I honestly don’t have any problems with anyone going there. Really. It’s just gross for me, so I am not going. I am also cheap. And hate crowds. And so on… There are things that I just don’t care to do: eat a turtle, watch gay porn, go to this exhibit. These are not moral objections, just things that make me cringe.

  • You really don’t want to watch 2 women at it? I thought most men did. Well, unless they were gay.

  • Joe

    You’ve been awarded.

  • After being a Russian porn star for so long, he lost the taste for it.

  • I didn’t say “lesbian” porn. If there was no distinction, there would not be a phrase “gays and lesbians”.

  • travel

    Amazing they can keep a body preserved like that.

  • You’re killin’ me, Meesha.

    My favorite public corpse is Lindow Man.

  • midtown miscreant

    I know there is a joke here involving the stiff and gay porn, but I cant string it together.
    I feel the same way with the bodies revealed exhibit, no judgements just dont really care to look at peeled meat. Heh. Good post.

  • Travel:there was a whole research institute created just for that purpose.

  • travel

    Quite an article, Meesha. Gruesome preservation procedure. Pity the poor guys who had to do it with perfection, lest being shipped off to Siberia or worse.

  • I saw a documentary on the Discovery (or some like-minded channel) about the preservation of Lenin.

    Seems like a lot of work just to keep some dead guy pickled.

  • Wait…am I the only one that caught the comment about the coffin being BULLETPROOF? WTF? Why? Are they afraid someone might come in and try to make him deader than he already is?

    Heh. That’s kinda funny, actually.

    (And I cannot believe there are still discussions, in any way, shape, or form about that bodies revealed exhibit going on. Some people aren’t interested in seeing it! Why can’t people just accept that and move the hell on? Sheesh.

  • Faith, in the Russian version of wikipedia it describes close to 10 events when people tried to damage the body by throwing rocks and even exploding small device, later they replaced the glass coffin with the bulletproof sarcophagus. Some of these people actually succeeded and in one case even scrathced his face.

  • joe

    I think some day they will preserve B.O. so people can wait in line to look.

    This Bodies Revealed thing should be seen by every cannibal, if the voices move them to.