Browse results

The impressive series Mass Culture & Entertainment in Russia comprises collections of extremely rare, and often unique, materials that offer a stunning insight into the dynamics of cultural and daily life in imperial and Soviet Russia. The series is organized along six thematic lines that together cover the full spectrum of nineteenth- and twentieth-century Russian culture, ranging from the penny press and high-brow art journals in pre-Revolutionary Russia, to children’s magazines and publications on constructivist design in the early Soviet Union.

The materials brought together in this series are essential to Slavists and historians, but should be equally appealing to political scientists, art historians, and sociologists who no longer view mass culture as the arrière-garde of cultural evolution, but as a highly complex phenomenon that deserves to be studied in its own right.

The entire series will be made available on Brill Online Primary Sources.

Series:

Edited by Helena Chmielewska-Szlajfer

Kazimierz Kelles-Krauz was an extraordinary figure on the Polish political scene at the turn of the 20th century. A Marxist and patriot, academic and politician, Kelles-Krauz was most known for his efforts to reconcile the needs of the nation with international socialism. This volume, however, offers a selection of his writings centred on the history of ideas, published for the first time in English. Kelles-Krauz’s works, while Marxist at heart, linked ideas stemming from the concepts of German idealists, French positivists, as well as contemporary sociologists who offered a bridge between research on individuals and the workings of social systems. Kelles-Krauz, however, repeatedly transcended Marxist tenets, focusing on the construction of traditions, social norms, and the social role of art.

This edited volume was first published in Polish as Kazimierz Kelles-Krauz: Marksizm a socjologia. Wybór pism by Wydawnictwa Uniwersytetu Warszawskiego in 2014. This current work has been revised and translated into English.

Series:

Gerol'd I. Vzdornov

This is the first study in any language to trace the emergence of the art historical interest in icon painting in the nineteenth century with its evident impact on the course of Russian modernism in the twentieth century. Given the surge in popularity of the Russian avant-garde, a book devoted to the gradual awareness of the artistic value of icons and their effect on Russian aesthetics is timely. The discoveries, the false starts, the incompetence, the interaction of dilettantes and academics, the meddling of tsars and church officials, all make for a fascinating tale of growing cultural awarenss. It is a story that prepares the ground for the explosioin of Russian cultural creativity and acceptability in the early twentieth century.

Jewish Theater under Stalinism

Moscow State Jewish Theater (GOSET)

Series:

Jewish Theater under Stalinism: Moscow State Jewish Theater (GOSET)

The collection of archival documents from the Russian State Archive of Literature and Art (RGALI) contains unique material on Jewish avant-garde art, Stalin’s repressions, and the history of Soviet culture and theater. This material, which is in Yiddish, Hebrew, Russian, English, French, and other European languages, allows us not only to further our knowledge of Yiddish theater and Jewish culture in the Soviet Union, but also to deepen and revise our understanding of the Kremlin’s policy toward Jewish society and culture, and of the realia of the everyday life of Jews in the 1920s-40s.
The collection will appeal to theater specialists, art historians, specialists in Soviet and Jewish history, historians of , sociologists of Jewish culture, historians of the theater, and music scholars.

Realization of the dream
Generations of creative Jewish intelligentsia dreamed about creating an artistic Jewish theater that could compete on the same level as the recognized Russian and European troupes. But financial circumstances precluded the realization of these dreams. Because there were too few Jews in the diaspora to fill the house every night, the box-office receipts were insufficient to sustain a theater as a cultural institution. As a result, Jewish troupes wandered from village to village and from town to town in search of spectators. This prevented them from concentrating on artistic problems and forced them to lead a semi-professional existence. Such dreams could only be realized with secure state support. Such support was offered by the Soviet regime, but on its own conditions, usually ideological ones. The conditions became increasingly severe during the 1920s-1930s, until they finally took the form of a death sentence.

National theater
In 1917, the Russian Empire contained the largest Jewish population in the world. In the 1920s and 1930s, a new proletarian Jewish culture emerged that spawned various political, scholarly, and cultural organizations. In 1919, the theatre that six years later would become GOSET opened in Petrograd under the name of the Jewish Chamber Theater; in 1920, it was transferred to Moscow. The founder of GOSET, and the artistic supervisor and director of almost all its productions until 1928, was Aleksei Granovskii (Avraam Azarkh), who defected during the troupe’s first European tour. From 1929, GOSET was headed by Solomon Mikhoels (Shlomo Vovsi).
GOSET reflects not only the most inspiring artistic achievements but also the successes and failures of Soviet nationality policy. In the 1920s-1930s, Moscow was unique in having a truly multicultural theater, something that other great cities could boast of only some 50 years later. During this period, Moscow was home to studios and theaters of various origins: Georgian, Armenian, Ukrainian, Latvian, and even German and Polish. It was here that the Jewish theater managed to accomplish a great leap from the rearguard to the vanguard of theatrical art. The theater became the most important, and after WWII the only, center of Yiddish culture in the USSR, and introduced many innovative ideas about theatrical performance and art. In 1928, GOSET embarked on an extensive and highly successful European tour. In 1948, during Stalin’s anti-Semitic campaign, Solomon Mikhoels was killed by the Soviet Secret Police; a year later, GOSET was closed down.

Left-wing art
Although left-wing art of the 1920s positioned itself to a significant degree as non-nationalist, GOSET combined avant-garde devices with national themes. To a significant extent, the character of the theater was determined by a galaxy of outstanding artists, namely Mark Chagall, Natan Al’tman, Isaac Rabinovich, Robert Falk, Aleksandr Tyshler, and others. For the artists of GOSET, their excruciating existence in the ghetto became a source of both tragic and comic elements. For them, to live meant to preserve their national and cultural identity in a situation of diaspora. In the 1920s, life in a small Jewish town became GOSET’s principle theme. From satirical sketches and theatrical parodies, GOSET moved on to the theatrical experience of the tragic fate of the Jewish people.

Touring
The artistic universalism of GOSET made a significant creative contribution to both the Jewish and the Russian theater. Touring began as early as October 1921, when the troupe traveled to Belarus, Ukraine, and Leningrad. In 1928, GOSET embarked on an extensive and highly successful European tour. Performances in Germany, Austria, France, Holland, and Belgium are evidence that the art of GOSET was an essential component of European theater in the 1920s. In the 1930s – the years of Stalinist repression and severe censorship – the theater continued to attract the attention of broad groups of spectators, to expand the geographical scope of its touring, and to triumphantly to mark its twentieth anniversary. By 1940, the troupe comprised some 50 people. During the years of the Great Patriotic War (1941-1945), the theater was evacuated to Tashkent (from December 1941 through September 1943), where the military sponsored some 400 performances.

Solomon Mikhoels
From 1929, GOSET was headed by Solomon Mikhoels (Shlomo Vovsi, 1890-1948). Mikhoels was a major figure in European theater: He was both an actor and a prominent politician with an international reputation. As an artist, he combined the tradition of Jewish roving comics with the technical achievements of avant-garde theater.
Mikhoels was highly regarded not only in theatrical circles. Broad Jewish masses saw him as their representative and intercessor with the authorities, and also used him for their own propagandistic goals. In 1941, Stalin appointed Mikhoels head of, and chief spokesman for, the Jewish Anti-Fascist Committee. Through media propaganda and their own personal contacts with Jews abroad, the members of the Committee were expected to influence public opinion and to enlist foreign support for the Soviet war effort. In 1943, Mikhoels made a trip to the USA, Canada, and Great Britain, soliciting contributions for the Soviet Army. His murder in Minsk in 1948 – which, there is reason to believe, was carried out on Stalin’s orders – marked the beginning of the elimination of Jewish culture in the USSR.

The ideological order
GOSET did not remain a favorite of the party-state leadership for long. In return for secure state support, the Soviet regime imposed its own ideological conditions. As early as the second half of the 1920s, GOSET and other Soviet theaters were ordered to portray on stage scenes of revolution and socialist construction; this order gradually assumed the form of an ultimatum. A huge number of plays performed by the theater, or submitted for its consideration, are preserved in the GOSET archive, even though many of them were never published.
It is of great interest to see in which years and on what basis plays were accepted or rejected: The press and the notes written by censors reveal the authorities’ official reaction to the problem of the Jewish theater in Russia and, indirectly, to their relationship to Jews as a whole. By the end of the 1940s, anti-Semitism had become government policy and repressions were carried out on a national scale. In 1949, following the murder of Mikhoels and the arrest of Zuskin (1949), GOSET was closed down as part of the “struggle with cosmopolitanism.”

Artistic salvation
GOSET found its artistic salvation in the official conception that socialist culture is the single legal successor to the world culture of past epochs. In connection with this idea, world and national classics ranging from Sholem Aleichem to Shakespeare were rehabilitated. Productions of Sulamif by Samuil Galkin based on Goldfagen (1937, directed by Mikhoels), Tevye the Dairyman based on Sholem Aleichem (1938, directed by Mikhoels), and King Lear (1935, directed by Sergei Radlov) were major creative achievements. The actors Solomon Mikhoels and Veniamin Zuskin were symbols of all stages of the life of the theater. In their art, the laughter and tears arising from Jewish pensiveness and rootlessness became part of theatrical poetry.

Provenance
After the theater had been closed down, its archive was moved to the Aleksei Bakhrushin State Theatrical Museum, where it was stored (without being catalogued) along with the archives of other closed theaters, for example, the Chamber Theater and the Second Moscow Art Theater. In the night of January 6-7, 1953, a major fire broke out in the small room in which the archives of these discredited theaters were kept. The documents suffered considerable damage, and many were destroyed. The materials that survived were transferred by order of the Committee for the Arts of the Council of Ministers of the USSR first to the collection of the Main Archive of the Ministry of Internal Affairs, and then (in 1959) to the Central Archive of Literature and Art (TsGALI), which is now the Russian Archive of Literature and Art (RGALI).

Moscow State Jewish Theater School (MGETU)
The archive of the Moscow State Jewish Theater School (1929-1949) forms part of the GOSET archive. E.B. Loiter and S.M. Mikhoels established the Moscow Jewish Theater Training School in 1929; in 1932, it became the Moscow State Jewish Theater School at GOSET. The School not only trained actors but also ran a department of drama study. This department was devoted to documenting the history of Jewish theatrical art. The uniqueness of the archive lies in the large collection of personal documents relating both to the professorial and teaching staff and to the students. The documents provide biographical data and factual information, which makes them a most valuable source for the study of the history of the Jewish theater.
Among the personages documented are A.V. Azarkh, A.G. Vovsi, G.M.Dobrushin, V. M. Zuskin, E.B. Loiter, S. M. Mikhoels, I. I. Nei, and I. Ia. Nei.

Unique material
The collection comprises both the archive of GOSET (Fond 2307, opis’ 1-2 ) and that of the Moscow State Jewish Theater School (MGETU) (Fond 2308, opis’ 1). The documentary materials are organized primarily chronologically (opis’ 1) and in accordance with the various parts of the theater (opis’ 2). The materials related to the “Secretariat” reflect the administrative-managerial and creative activity of the theater; the struggle to impose state control on the theater; labor and financial discipline; the organization of tours; the contact with a broad audience; and the policies of the Soviet authorities in the sphere of national minorities.
The second of the major categories is the “Literary Section,” which contains a large collection of Jewish plays, both in Russian and in Yiddish, that either were performed in the theater or were in the repertoires of other Jewish theaters. These materials offer historians of Jewish literature and sociologists of Jewish culture tremendous insights, as they provide information about the realia of daily life, Russian relations to Jews at that time, and anti-Semitism.
The small, but unique, “Musical Section” contains musical items for productions at GOSET. The impressive categories “Press about the Theater” and “Posters, Programs, and Librettos” constitute an important factual source. The category “Graphic Materials” is a valuable iconographic resource, the main body of which consists of photographs of GOSET productions and of the actors off-stage. The “Personal Documents” and “Personal Affairs of the Theater Employees” categories contain materials related to the creative lives of Granovskii, Mikhoels, Zuskin, and many other members of the GOSET troupe.

Series:

Mass Media in Russia, 1908-1918
Part 1. Russian Penny Newspapers (Gazety Kopeiki)

The appearance of a "kopeck", the first working class daily newspaper press, in June 1908 finally gave Russia its "penny" equivalent and integrated a whole new stratum of readers into the newspaper audience. It promised the world, literally, every day for one kopeck. Kopeck newspapers soon became the most widely circulated in Russia.

Valuable cultural artefact
The new popular culture, which arose in Russia from 1861 to 1917, was embodied primarily in the commercially printed material that circulated among the lower classes. When the lower classes learned to read they turned from their oral heritage to the printed word, and new types of publications appeared to serve their needs. Among the new types of newspapers that appeared in the last third of the nineteenth century were some that contemporaries identified as "the street press", "the little press" or less sympathetically as "boulevard press". These newspapers were intended for a wide urban audience, and they contained descriptions of the grim and sordid aspects of city life, crime, scandal and misfortune. "The editorial concept of Kopeika - a paradox of integration and escapism" made Kopeika so valuable as a cultural artefact. ( ref.: McReynolds, L. The news under Russia's Old Regime. The development of a mass-circulation press, Princeton University press, 1991. p. 230.)

St. Petersburg Gazeta Kopeika
The St. Petersburg Gazeta Kopeika (1908-1917) was a four-to-six page daily tabloid designed and priced to capture the interest of the new common reader. The newspaper was started by M.B. Gorodetskii (1866-1918), a liberal Jew who had learned his trade writing about poor and exploited labourers first in his native small town Gorlovka in Donetsk guberniia and then in Rostov-na-Donu. In the middle of the 1890s he moved to St. Petersburg. He recognized that the striking workers had commercial publishers who defended their interests, but none that appealed to them directly.
Gorodetskii teamed up with several relatives and V. Anzimirov, a popular writer, to produce a remarkably unique addition to the newspaper contingent in St. Petersburg, available for three rubles annually or one kopeck per single issue.
A year later in 1909, Anzimirov left St. Petersburg to inaugurate Moscow's kopeck press, which far more radically, lived a precarious existence under a variety of names with different editors and publishers.
As the enterprise of Gorodetskii and his friends flourished, Gorodetskii branched out into other publications, and Kopeika became a joint stock company in 1913. One of the most interesting projects was the firm Contemporary Lubok, which issued propaganda posters by K Malevich and other well-known artists during World War I. The poet Vladimir Mayakovsky wrote captions for the pictures and drew a few illustrations of his own.

Phenomenal circulation
This working class daily immediately attracted a huge readership. From the first days of its existence the St. Petersburg Kopeika was an enormous success. Its circulation rose from 11,000 copies in the first days of publication in 1908 to 150,000 in 1909. By 1910 circulation peaked at 250,000 copies making Kopeika the most popular newspaper in the Russian Empire. Annual street sales of Kopeika started with 2.233.167 issues; it was reported to be selling 10.229.268 copies in 1910 and 17.308.717 in 1911.
The independent Moscow edition of the Kopeika was almost as successful as the St. Petersburg edition. Circulation of the Moscow kopeck paper reached 60,000 in the first year of publication and 150,000 copies by 1912.

Subscribers
The St. Petersburg Kopeika and Moscow Kopeika were read by lower-class readers, mainly newly literate migrants from the countryside or working people who had grown up in the city. The intention of the editors of the kopeck newspapers to address their papers to the lower-class population was particularly evident in the "workers life" column. Readers' letters in Kopeika spoke out for society's most marginal elements. They criticized existing institutions when they failed to protect them. The variety of issues under discussion ranged from arguments for improved health care for prostitutes to better salaries for clowns.

Content
The editors of the kopeck newspapers in the capitals made their newspapers inexpensive, displayed serial fiction prominently, and paid lavish attention to crime, scandal, and human-interest stories. They allotted space to national and international news and they claimed an educational role. They also adopted a liberal political position. They promised "to give new masses of people, for whom the large newspapers are unsuitable because of price or language, the opportunity to know what is happening in the world." ( ref.: Brooks, J. When Russians learned to read: Literacy and Popular Literature, 1861-1917. Princeton, 1985 p. 133).
The most discussed topics in the pages of this newspaper were, poor living conditions of the population's lowest groups, inefficiency of authorities, prostitution, suicide, hooliganism, street crime, alcoholism and child abuse. Kopeika attacked the city government for not dealing effectively with the dilemma of infant mortality, just as it faulted the national government for its hypocritical attitude toward alcoholism.
The Russian Empire and world beyond were portrayed in the kopeck newspapers as a seemingly endless stream of places in which exciting or curious events took place. There were articles about the lives of coachmen, street artists, the bums' bourse where old cloths and shoes were trade, prostitutes, etc.

Source for mass culture studies
The IDC microfiche edition of "Kopeika" press allows easy access to a unique and rare source practically unavailable in Western libraries. These newspapers document political and social developments in Russia in the pivotal years from 1908 to 1918 and at the same time provide a mirror of the colourful social and cultural life of the Russian capitals.

Series:

Mass Media in Russia, 1908-1918
Part 2. The World of Penny (Kopeck) Magazines

The appearance of a "kopeck", the first working class daily newspaper press, in June 1908 finally gave Russia its "penny" equivalent and integrated a whole new stratum of readers into the newspaper audience. It promised the world, literally, every day for one kopeck. Kopeck newspapers soon became the most widely circulated in Russia.

Valuable cultural artefact
The new popular culture, which arose in Russia from 1861 to 1917, was embodied primarily in the commercially printed material that circulated among the lower classes. When the lower classes learned to read they turned from their oral heritage to the printed word, and new types of publications appeared to serve their needs. Among the new types of newspapers that appeared in the last third of the nineteenth century were some that contemporaries identified as “the street press”, “the little press” or less sympathetically as "boulevard press". These newspapers were intended for a wide urban audience, and they contained descriptions of the grim and sordid aspects of city life, crime, scandal and misfortune. “The editorial concept of Kopeika - a paradox of integration and escapism" made Kopeika so valuable as a cultural artefact. ( ref.: McReynolds, L. The news under Russia's Old Regime. The development of a mass-circulation press, Princeton University press, 1991. p. 230.)

St. Petersburg Gazeta Kopeika
The St. Petersburg Gazeta Kopeika (1908-1917) was a four-to-six page daily tabloid designed and priced to capture the interest of the new common reader. The newspaper was started by M.B. Gorodetskii (1866-1918), a liberal Jew who had learned his trade writing about poor and exploited labourers first in his native small town Gorlovka in Donetsk guberniia and then in Rostov-na-Donu. In the middle of the 1890s he moved to St. Petersburg. He recognized that the striking workers had commercial publishers who defended their interests, but none that appealed to them directly.
Gorodetskii teamed up with several relatives and V. Anzimirov, a popular writer, to produce a remarkably unique addition to the newspaper contingent in St. Petersburg, available for three rubles annually or one kopeck per single issue.
A year later in 1909, Anzimirov left St. Petersburg to inaugurate Moscow’s kopeck press, which far more radically, lived a precarious existence under a variety of names with different editors and publishers.
As the enterprise of Gorodetskii and his friends flourished, Gorodetskii branched out into other publications, and Kopeika became a joint stock company in 1913. One of the most interesting projects was the firm Contemporary Lubok, which issued propaganda posters by K Malevich and other well-known artists during World War I. The poet Vladimir Mayakovsky wrote captions for the pictures and drew a few illustrations of his own.

Phenomenal circulation
This working class daily immediately attracted a huge readership. From the first days of its existence the St. Petersburg Kopeika was an enormous success. Its circulation rose from 11,000 copies in the first days of publication in 1908 to 150,000 in 1909. By 1910 circulation peaked at 250,000 copies making Kopeika the most popular newspaper in the Russian Empire. Annual street sales of Kopeika started with 2.233.167 issues; it was reported to be selling 10.229.268 copies in 1910 and 17.308.717 in 1911.
The independent Moscow edition of the Kopeika was almost as successful as the St. Petersburg edition. Circulation of the Moscow kopeck paper reached 60,000 in the first year of publication and 150,000 copies by 1912.

Subscribers
The St. Petersburg Kopeika and Moscow Kopeika were read by lower-class readers, mainly newly literate migrants from the countryside or working people who had grown up in the city. The intention of the editors of the kopeck newspapers to address their papers to the lower-class population was particularly evident in the “workers life” column. Readers’ letters in Kopeika spoke out for society’s most marginal elements. They criticized existing institutions when they failed to protect them. The variety of issues under discussion ranged from arguments for improved health care for prostitutes to better salaries for clowns.

Content
The editors of the kopeck newspapers in the capitals made their newspapers inexpensive, displayed serial fiction prominently, and paid lavish attention to crime, scandal, and human-interest stories. They allotted space to national and international news and they claimed an educational role. They also adopted a liberal political position. They promised “to give new masses of people, for whom the large newspapers are unsuitable because of price or language, the opportunity to know what is happening in the world.” ( ref.: Brooks, J. When Russians learned to read: Literacy and Popular Literature, 1861-1917. Princeton, 1985 p. 133).
The most discussed topics in the pages of this newspaper were, poor living conditions of the population’s lowest groups, inefficiency of authorities, prostitution, suicide, hooliganism, street crime, alcoholism and child abuse. Kopeika attacked the city government for not dealing effectively with the dilemma of infant mortality, just as it faulted the national government for its hypocritical attitude toward alcoholism.
The Russian Empire and world beyond were portrayed in the kopeck newspapers as a seemingly endless stream of places in which exciting or curious events took place. There were articles about the lives of coachmen, street artists, the bums’ bourse where old cloths and shoes were trade, prostitutes, etc.

Source for mass culture studies
The IDC microfiche edition of “Kopeika” press allows easy access to a unique and rare source practically unavailable in Western libraries. These newspapers document political and social developments in Russia in the pivotal years from 1908 to 1918 and at the same time provide a mirror of the colourful social and cultural life of the Russian capitals.

Jeffrey Brooks

Series:

Various Authors & Editors

Russian Avant-garde, 1904-1946

Gold mine
The Russian literary avant-garde was both a cradle for many new literary styles and the birthplace of a new physical appearance for printed materials. The strength of this collection is in its sheer range. It contains many rare and intriguingly obscure books, as well as well-known and critically acclaimed texts, almanacs, periodicals, literary manifests. This makes it a gold mine for art historians and literary scholars alike. Represented in it are more than 30 literary groups without which the history of twentieth-century Russian literature would have been very different. Among the groups included are the Ego-Futurists and Cubo-Futurists, the Imaginists, the Constructivists, the Biocosmists, and the infamous nichevoki - who, in their most radical manifestoes, professed complete abstinence from literary creation.
The collection also includes parodies and the works of imitators. Many books include marginalia of famous artists; different editions of the same book often have a different lay-out, and can even be illustrated by a different artist. For example, the hand written book of A.E. Kruchenykh and V.V. Khlebnikov has two editions. Both are illustrated by a famous artist: The first is illustrated by N.Goncharova, the second by O. Rozanova and K.Malevich. All of these editions are carefully selected and represented in this collection.

Richness and diversity
The collection embraces all major literary and artistic movements. The aims and aspirations of these movements diverge sharply: whereas the futurist manifestos express the aim of seeking forms which would go beyond rational expression; the constructivists state that their prime aim is to connect art with everyday life. However all of them had in common the search for new forms and are committed to experimentation, and the belief that the creative forces of their art could change the world.
The collection gives pride of place to the work of such famous Russian poets as Vladimir Maiakovskii, Velimir Khlebnikov, Igor Severianin, Sergei Esenin, Anatolii Mariengof, Ilia Selvinskii, Vladimir Shershenevich, David and Nikolai Burliuk, Alexei Kruchenykh, and Vasilii Kamenskii. However, it also includes relatively unknown poets whose work has never been republished, for example, Georgii Evangulov, Georgii Zolotukhin, Pavel Kokorin, Boris Pereleshin, and Aleksandr Iaroslavskii. The collection covers the period 1904-1946 and comprises materials published in Russia and abroad; most were published in Moscow, St. Petersburg, Odessa, Irkutsk, Vladivostok, Chita, Khar'kov, Kiev, Tiflis (Tbilisi), Baku, Berlin, Paris, New York and Harbin (China).

Revolution in the world of printing
It is commonly agreed that Russia's literary avant-garde introduced a totally different vocabulary and many new devices, but also introduced a new attitude towards the physical appearance of books and other printed materials. During the first three decades of the 20th century, artists did not regard books simply as vehicles for the conveyance of intellectual content, but also as objects of art in their own right. The eagerness of these artists to experiment with book printing and illustrations is amply demonstrated by the astounding richness of this collection.

Masterpieces of book design
Russian artists did not content themselves with just adding illustrations: They also experimented with the shape and size of books, and used alternative materials - such as cardboard or colored paper - to enhance a book's appearance. Apart from possessing great literary value, the publications of the Russian avant-garde can justifiably be regarded as masterpieces of typography and book design.

Current market value of Russian Avant-garde books
Most books in this collection cost thousands Dollars per book at the auction sales. At Howard Schickler Fine Art, New York Ei i mne and Dlia golosa from Vladimir Mayakovsky with illustrations of Rodchenko are offered for $ 8,500 and $ 5,500 respectively. At Sotheby's Zangezi from Khlebnikov is offered for £ 1,500. IDC Publishers is making available these works for just a fraction of these prices.

The National Library of Russia
The National Library of Russia www.nlr.ru is one of the world's largest libraries. Owing to the wealth and variety of its collections, the library ranks among such libraries as the Library of Congress and the British Library. The National Library of Russia occupies a special place in the history of Russian culture. Founded by the Enlightener Empress Catherine II with a dual purpose, "for a complete collection of Russian books" and "for general public usage". Today it stocks more then 32.8 million items, 6 million of which are written in foreign languages. The National Library of Russia is more than just a library: it is a cultural center with concert halls, information centers, and its own publishing house.

Series:

Various Authors & Editors

World of Children in the USSR
Artek pioneer camp archives, 1944-1967

As part of our Mass Culture and Everyday Life in Russia publishing project, we are proud to announce a series of publications on the life of young people in the USSR and their subculture. The first set of documents we present are on the Artek Pioneer Camp, which are held in the Komsomol Archives.

Research Value of the Collection
This collection documents the history of Artek, the main Soviet pioneer recreation camp, and includes information on various aspects of youth policy and young people’s lives in the Soviet Union in the period from 1944 to 1967. It contains government documents, administrative, medical and financial records, transcripts of meetings, statistical reports, letters from Soviet and foreign children, diaries etc. These documents provide an insight into everyday life and mentality of Soviet children. The archive is a valuable resource for a wide circle of researchers in such fields as sociology, cultural studies, philology and political history.

Topics
• Everyday life of children/ pioneers in the USSR
• Soviet children and youth policy
• Social policy
• Totalitarian art
• Gender history
• Soviet mythology
• Ethnic policy and international relations

Artek as the Capital City of Soviet Children
This famous children camp was officially dubbed as “capital city of Soviet children”. Founded in 1925 as a medical rehabilitation centre for children, Artek soon became the model of children’s communist paradise intended as a showcase of the achievements of the State’s political and propaganda technologies. Indeed, the superb living conditions and facilities for the children staying in the camp were a dream come true compared with the usual living conditions of most Soviet people. By the 60s, tens of thousands children from various countries passed through the camp each season. The list of celebrity guests who visited Artek in the 40s and 60s includes Nikita Khruschchev, Clementine Spencer-Churchill, the British Prime Minister's wife, Jawaharlal Nehru, Indira Gandhi and Yuri Gagarin. Artek’s Archive reflects the camp’s history in the period between 1944 and 1967. All earlier records were lost during the Second World War when Artek was under the German occupation. The camp’s records covering the 70s and 80s are stored within the camp, and it is difficult for researchers to access these materials.

Children in the Soviet Union
The Soviet childhood phenomenon has recently become a subject of increasing attention of anthropologists, specialists in cultural studies, linguists, philologists as well as political and social historians. Soviet children’s culture had its own musical and language traditions, art, theatre, cinematography, powerful graphic symbols, elaborate ceremonies and rituals and its own literature. The world of the Soviet child was carefully controlled by adults. On the one hand, children immediately participated in the social life of Soviet adults: children partook in demonstrations with their parents, listened to political information on the school radio, etc. On the other hand a special microcosm was modelled for the Soviet child: the Pioneer organization. Children’s life had to flow along the stream of “rules for the behaviour of pioneers” and “pioneer laws”. A child’s time, space, everyday life and holidays were strictly regulated. Together with school, it was more effective than the family in having an effect on the upbringing of children. For many decades this guarantied the vitality of that special type of the human species, the Homo Sovieticus.

The collection contains
• Materials on Soviet social and health policies
• Children health reports, food rations and provision standards
• Materials on educational and ideological work carried out in the camp
• Numerous children’s letters including letters of foreign children
• A collection of songs and event plans
• Broadcast texts and lists of recommended films.