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'My Life as a Spy' _ under surveillance in communist Russia

This undated photo provided by Juan Carlos Arévalo shows Katherine Verdery, an American anthropologist and professor. Verdery's memoir "My Life as a S...
This undated image provided by Duke University Press shows the cover of the memoir "My Life as a Spy: Investigations in a Secret Police File," by Kath...
FILE - In this March 10, 2005, file photo, Romanian military staff prepare to unload files of Romania's former communist regime's Securitate secret po...
FILE - In this July 29, 2009, file photo, a man who refused to be identified by name reads a communist era secret police file at the headquarters of t...

This undated photo provided by Juan Carlos Arévalo shows Katherine Verdery, an American anthropologist and professor. Verdery's memoir "My Life as a S...

This undated image provided by Duke University Press shows the cover of the memoir "My Life as a Spy: Investigations in a Secret Police File," by Kath...

FILE - In this March 10, 2005, file photo, Romanian military staff prepare to unload files of Romania's former communist regime's Securitate secret po...

FILE - In this July 29, 2009, file photo, a man who refused to be identified by name reads a communist era secret police file at the headquarters of t...

BUCHAREST, Romania (AP) — Romanian secret police agents eavesdropped on her conversations, persuaded friends to snoop on her and filmed her in her underwear.

Some 70 informants and spies kept tabs on Katherine Verdery, now an anthropology professor at City University of New York, when she visited communist Romania in the '70s and '80s as a postgraduate doing research on an anthropology thesis on Romanian village life.

No other U.S. citizen was so closely scrutinized by the Securitate secret police of communist leader Nicolae Ceausesu.

After the collapse of communism in 1989, she obtained her 2,781-page dossier and transformed the material into a 344-page book, "My Life as a Spy." The book was recently translated into Romanian, opening old wounds but also challenging Romanians to confront a dark chapter in their history.


Updated : 2021-02-27 18:50 GMT+08:00