Monthly Archives: March 2012

The Stalin Cult

Jan Plamper’s study is a commanding work of scholarship that tests many assumptions about the Stalin cult, places it in the context of modern authoritarian rule, and delves into extensive archival sources to examine its workings of the cult.   His … Continue reading

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The Stalin Cult: Painting and Socialist Realism

As a historian interested in visuality in general and Soviet visual culture in particular, I read Jan Plamper’s book with great interest and benefit, but with some perplexity.  The book offers us an excellent survey of the production of some … Continue reading

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The Stalin Cult – Between Reality and Representation

I am grateful to Steven Barnes for inviting me to participate in this conversation on Jan Plamper’s fascinating book, The Stalin Cult.  As an outsider to the field of Russian studies, I hope my comments will add to the liveliness … Continue reading

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The Stalin Cult

I’d like to thank Steve Barnes for inviting me to take part in this conversation, and to thank and congratulate Jan Plamper for his book.  I should say first of all that I consider The Stalin Cult a remarkable and … Continue reading

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The Stalin Cult—Theory, Practice & the ‘Holy Grail of Reception’

I’m pleased to be given the chance to comment on Jan Plamper’s The Stalin Cult, as it is a book that I’ve been waiting to read for some time.[1. The book follows his 2001 dissertation and a 2010 Russian translation … Continue reading

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The Stalin Cult – A Blog Conversation

Adolf Hitler, Benito Mussolini, Mao Zedong, Kim Jong-Il, Joseph Stalin. The mere sound of these names conjures up mental images of the personality cult–films, monuments, renamed cities, prose, poetry, and, perhaps most of all, portraiture all designed to raise a … Continue reading

Posted in Blog Conversations, Soviet Era 1917-1991, Stalinism, The Stalin Cult | 1 Comment

Marina Goldovskaya: Chronicler of the Post-Brezhnev Era

My post is about a film festival that was held on my campus on March 18. We screened three documentary films by documentary filmmaker Marina Goldovskaya. I emerged from the event, and also after reading her autobiography, convinced of the … Continue reading

Posted in Films, Perestroika, Post-Soviet Russia | 1 Comment

Policing Sexuality in Medieval Russia

The Center for Medieval Studies has a very visible presence at Fordham University where I teach. In the history department alone, medievalist faculty and graduate students maintain a healthy and vibrant intellectual life. Although I am a historian of modern … Continue reading

Posted in Gender and Sexuality, Imperial Russia, Medieval Russia, Teaching Russian History | Leave a comment

Three Songs About Motherland

My university (California State University, Long Beach) is screening a number of documentary films about Russia this semester, including three films from the esteemed documentary film maker Marina Goldovskaya: A Taste of Freedom (1991, 46 min.), A Bitter Taste of Freedom … Continue reading

Posted in Cold War, Films, Nostalgia and Memory, Post-Soviet Russia, Soviet Era 1917-1991, Teaching Russian History | 1 Comment

Pussy Riot Arrest and Byzantine Church-State Relations Today

[] Five members of the feminist punk rock group Pussy Riot have been arrested for a “punk prayer” at the Church of the Savior in Moscow. Two are being held until late April with threats of sentences up to seven … Continue reading

Posted in Current events in the Putin Era, Imperial Russia, Nostalgia and Memory, Post-Soviet Russia, Russian Orthodoxy, Teaching Russian History | Tagged , , , | 2 Comments