Thursday, July 24, 2014



The Kitchen Debate was an impromptu debate (through interpreters) between then U.S. Vice President Richard Nixon and Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev at the opening of the American National Exhibition in Moscow, on July 24, 1959. For the event, an entire house was built that the American exhibitors claimed anyone in America could afford. It was filled with labor saving and recreational devices meant to represent the fruits of the capitalist American consumer market.

My Dad, Sherry Bell, was in Moscow with the Harrisburg Chamber of Commerce at the time of the Kitchen Debate. He told me that the Russians were absolutely convinced that the 1959 Cadillac was purely a mock-up made for the show. They couldn't believe that anyone actually owned one. They thought it was an American version of a "Potemkin Village." [Potemkin villages were purportedly fake settlements erected at the direction of Russian minister Grigory Potyomkin to fool Empress Catherine II during her visit to Crimea in 1787. According to this story, Potyomkin, who led the Crimean military campaign, had hollow facades of villages constructed along the desolate banks of the Dnieper River in order to impress the monarch and her travel party with the value of her new conquests, thus enhancing his standing in the empress's eyes.]


1 comment:

Magdalena said...

Hello Rob!!! :-))) I'm very happy about your holidays plans, this is the best place to stay - Florence, and this closeness to Santa Croce make it just magnificent. Please, say hi from me to every single stone in Florence, but especially to Duomo. Sending you my best wishes and may your holiday in Italy were the most beautiful in your life. Hugs from Poland :-)

Titian in the Frari (Venezia)