Interview: Irina Melekhina

Title

Interview: Irina Melekhina

Description

Irena Melekhina recounts her experiences growing up in the USSR, earning a degree in dentistry, and then seeking refugee status along with her husband prior to immigrating to the United States in 1991. She recalls a sense of being brainwashed by the Soviet government, yet still feeling a loss at the collapse of the Soviet Union. She and her husband and 2 month old child arrived in New York City in August 1991, just as the August Coup was taking place in the USSR. The interview recounts these early years of adjusting to life in the United States, resettling in Philadelphia for better job opportunities, and raising their family in Northeast Philadelphia. Toward the end of the interview, Irina shares a series of photographs and memorabilia from the Soviet Union.

Rights

Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History, University of Kentucky Libraries

Identifier

2019oh0147_irw0078

Interviewer

Janneken Smucker

Interviewee

Irina Melekhina

Sort Priority

0028

Interview Keyword

Jewish ethnicity
Union of Soviet Socialist Republics (USSR)
Soviet Union
Russia
Assimilation
Religion
Jews--Identity.
Physicians
Military education
Traditional dance
Republic of Crimea
Kiev (Ukraine : Oblast)

Indexed By

Kayla DiPaolo

Files

Irina_01.jpg


Citation

“Interview: Irina Melekhina,” Philly Immigration, accessed September 16, 2021, https://phillyimmigration.nunncenter.net/items/show/1058.

Geolocation