Gloom in the time of glasnost

May 11, 1992

In Russia angst is one of the simple pleasures of life. But these days it is the one item in oversupply. According to a report by the Cherepovets Regional Scientific Methodological Center for the Study of Social Problems, 80% of the residents of the city, about 230 miles north of Moscow, are in a constant state of heightened irritability. The proportion experiencing alarm and depression is 70%; agitation and anxiety for no clear reason, 61%; a sense that life is meaningless, 42%. Thoughts of suicide have increased 20-fold. It might be called the "inside story" of reform.

Copyright (c) TIME Magazine, 1995 TIME Inc. Magazine Company; (c) 1995 Compact Publishing, Inc.

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