Sunday, July 02, 2006

In Quest of a Text

In June 2006 Esquire magazine published New York Times correspondent C.J. Chivers' 18,000 word essay The School, on the Beslan school seizure of September 2004.

The full text of the essay cannot be found online in open format. Only the first section, which is based on the statements of Kazbek Misikov, is posted. It seems that the whole text can only be obtained in hard copy format, and then only by Esquire subscribers. There appears to be an electronic copy at KeepMedia, but I'm unable to access it, for as far as I can ascertain it's only available to residents of the U.S. and Canada.

It's puzzling that an essay of such significance - it has been touted for a Pulitzer award - should be so hard to acquire. I'm wondering if anyone in the blogosphere has succeeded in obtaining the full version.

The recorded proceedings of the Kulayev trial seem to be at variance with some aspects of Chris Chivers' account, and the question has been raised of whether his logging of the details of the massacre was perhaps in some way influenced by the producers of the Image Entertainment film The School, which is based on his account, and is apparently still under consideration in Hollywood.

At all events, it would be useful to be able to compare the Esquire essay with the court records of the Kulayev trial that were maintained by the Truth of Beslan ( website.

Update: It turns out there's a bootleg version of the text on the PravdaBeslana website. I'll be reading, and will hope to post something further soon.
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