1907 – 1994
Who was Robert Robinson?
Robert Robinson was a Jamaican-born toolmaker who worked in the auto industry in the United States. At the age of 23, he was recruited to work in the Soviet Union, where he spent 44 years after the government refused to give him an exit visa for return.
Starting with a one-year contract by Russians to work in the Soviet Union, he twice renewed his contract. He became trapped by the German invasion of the Soviet Union during World War II and the government's refusal to give him an exit visa. He earned a degree in mechanical engineering during the war. He finally left the Soviet Union in 1974 on an approved trip to Uganda, where he asked for and was given asylum. He married an African-American professor working there. He finally gained re-entry to the United States in 1976, and gained attention for his accounts of his 44 years in the Soviet Union.
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