Nina Katerli, a prominent writer, publicist, and human rights activist, has passed away at the age of 89 in St. Petersburg. Her death was announced on social media just six months after her apartment was searched in connection with a terrorism-related case involving her granddaughter, director Evgenia Berkovich.
Nina Katerli was born into a family of writers in Leningrad on June 30, 1934. After working as a chemical technologist for nearly two decades, she transitioned to become a full-time writer. Throughout her career, she authored 15 books of prose and journalism that have been translated and published abroad in countries such as the USA, France, and Japan.
Katerli’s writing often touched on taboo subjects and led to conflicts with the KGB. She was one of the first writers to delve into the genre of fantastic realism and science fiction. In the 1990s, she began focusing on psychological prose and created a series of fairy tales that included social satire.
Human rights activism also played a significant role in Katerli’s life. She wrote and published numerous newspaper articles about human rights issues such as the Nazi threat and social cultural problems of her time. Reflecting her commitment to this cause are her books “The Lawsuit,” “The Nikitin Case: Victory Strategy,” and “Do what you must, and come what may.” Even after retiring from writing, Nina continued her activism as a member of various human rights associations and often lent her name to appeals and open letters from the Russian intelligentsia in defense of political prisoners and human rights in Russia.
Katerli’s passing is deeply felt by many who knew her as an inspiration for their own work or as someone who stood up for what they believed in despite adversity. Her legacy will live on through her books that continue to be read today.