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Postscript

When we talk about conveying ideas in speech-recognition systems, we tend to think of spoken prompts and responses. But spoken words are not the only way to share ideas. We can convey complex ideas aurally without speaking a single word. Dmitri Shostakovitch proved that in 1937 when he premiered his Fifth Symphony (Op. 47).

Shostakovitch lived in Stalinist Russia—a time of violent oppression when dissidents and perceived rivals were either eliminated by the secret police or shipped off to labor camps in Siberia. The Soviet government only tolerated those artists and writers whose work reflected Stalinist views and Socialist Realism orthodoxy.


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