Norilsk leader was book character prototype
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Norilsk leader was book character prototype

May 26, 2022

Igor Aristov came to Norilsk in 1961 after graduating from the Irkutsk Polytechnic Institute mining department - as he repeatedly emphasized, out of ideological convictions.

#ARCTIC. #SIBERIA. THIS IS TAIMYR. He started as a mechanic at the Zapolyarny mine’s underground section. An active guy was noticed in the Komsomol city committee: Aristov became its second, and then its first secretary.

In 1969, he returned to production and was offered the position of the mining department deputy chief engineer. Later Aristov became the plant’s deputy director for personnel and social development for ten years. In 1982, he was elected first secretary of the city party committee.

Aristov assembled the combine’s professional staff. He was strategically involved in the personnel policy of a huge enterprise, when no one had heard of such things yet, when there were no personnel services, only personnel departments. He introduced professional competitions and advanced training into a permanent practice, and also paid great attention to the young employees adaptation. He also supported the of Young Professionals Council, the first meetings of which were held in Aristov’s office.

Under Aristov, cooperation agreements were concluded with the country’s largest specialized institutes: the Moscow and Leningrad Mining Institutes, the Ural Polytechnic University, and so on. He created the combine’s sociological service, which allowed him to establish connection with Norilsk inhabitants. At Aristov’s suggestion, the North inhabitants health issues were also studied by the leading institutions of the country.

Igor Aristov was an avid reader. He considered the collection of lyrics by Leonid Martynov, One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel Garcia Marquez and The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov to be books worthy of being saved in the global flood.

Aristov himself became the prototype of a book character. In 1980, the story of Yeremey Parnov, the author of science fiction and historical detective stories, was published. That was an industrial novel about life in a polar city and the work of a mining and smelting combine, and not a Parnov’s usual adventure book. But the rich language, images and metaphors made it intriguing. Especially for the Norilsk people, who guessed the northern city under the name Zapolyarny, and Kolesnikov and Aristov – ander the heroes’ names.

In the History Spot photo project previous publication, we told about how the Large Concentrating Plant began to work.

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Text: Svetlana Ferapontova, Photo: Nornickel Polar Branch archive

May 26, 2022

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