Glavlit (Lithuania) collection
The General Directorate for the Protection of State Secrets in the Press under the Council of Ministers of Soviet Lithuania (Glavlit) was the main censorship institution in Soviet Lithuania. The collection holds many documents illustrating the censorship of activities by cultural workers, and reflecting the boundaries for content, which was related to Modernism and the Lithuanian cultural heritage.
Vilnius O. Milašiaus gatvė 21, Lithuania 10102
Show on map
Name of collection
- The Collection of General Directorate for the Protection of State Secrets in the Press under the Council of Ministers of Soviet Lithuania
Provenance and cultural activities
The collection is held in the Lithuanian Central Archive. The documents were stored at Glavlit after its activities were restored in 1944. Glavlit faced several reorganisations. At the beginning, its name was the Main Administration for Literary and Publishing Affairs under the People's Commissariat of Education. In 1946, it was renamed the Administration for the Protection of Military and State Secrets in the Press under the Council of Ministers. In 1953, it was named the Main Administration for the Protection of Military and State Secrets in the Press under the USSR Council of Ministers, and in 1966 the institution was renamed the General Directorate for the Protection of State Secrets in the Press under the USSR Council of Ministers. Documents were transmitted to the archive in 1986. Glavlit was abolished in February 1990.
The collection gives us an understanding of how science, culture and art were regulated and dogmatised 'from above'. Structural models for the censorship of public opinion were applied in social life. The main axis of Soviet ideology was the activities of institutions responsible for censorship. The LSSR Glavlit was one of the main components in the censorship mechanism, and influenced directly cultural life in Lithuania. Numerous members of the cultural intelligentsia faced control by Glavlit. The collection of LSSR Glavlit documents reveals what cultural activities and which cultural workers faced the impact of censorship. For instance, when the Soviet campaign against nationalism intensified, Modernist works were strictly condemned in the 1960s.
Description of content
The General Directorate for the Protection of State Secrets in the Press under the Council of Ministers of Soviet Lithuania (Glavlit) was founded in Lithuania in 1940. This state institution implemented the role of censorship of the press, and controlled various aspects of cultural activities, from the censorship of books to newspapers. The cultural intelligentsia felt directly the impact of censorship, adapting their cultural activities to the requirements of Glavlit, and accessing particular information (such as émigré books). The Glavlit collection contains documents from 1945 to 1990. It contains various documents, from orders to the plans of Glavlit, correspondence with various institutions, and individual legal documents regulating particular cases of control.
- grey literature (regular archival documents such as brochures, bulletins, leaflets, reports, intelligence files, records, working papers, meeting minutes): 100-499
Date of founding
Place of founding
Vilnius O. Milašiaus gatvė 21, Lithuania
Show on map
Creator(s) of content
Important events in the history of the collection
- completely open to the public
Part of network
Author(s) of this page
- Ivanauskas, Vilius
Agurkis, Vaidas , interview by Grybkauskas, Saulius, May 17, 2017. COURAGE Registry Oral History Collection