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Swans of the Kremlin: Ballet and Power in Soviet Russia (Paperback)
  • Swans of the Kremlin: Ballet and Power in Soviet Russia (Paperback)
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Swans of the Kremlin: Ballet and Power in Soviet Russia (Paperback)

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£25.50
Paperback 336 Pages / Published: 15/11/2012
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"A fascinating glimpse at the collision of art and politics during the first fifty years of the Soviet period. Ezrahi shows how the producers and performers of Russia's two major ballet troupes quietly but effectively resisted Soviet cultural hegemony during this period"--

Publisher: University of Pittsburgh Press
ISBN: 9780822962144
Number of pages: 336
Weight: 522 g
Dimensions: 235 x 152 x 23 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS

"As dramatic as any of the grand ballets, Ezrahi's investigation delves into the storied past of Russian ballet as the paragon of choreographic and balletic superiority and as a symbol of cultural supremacy under the Soviet regime. . . . Not only for ballet aficionados and history buffs, the author's effort is a distinguished and intricate view of the intersection of art and politics. In the end, Ezrahi proves that even though art may be political, great art is not only deceitful and complex, but can rise above any ideology."

"--ForeWord Reviews"


"In "Swans of the Kremlin" Christina Ezrahi reconstructs long-ago debates and makes us hear--as though we were flies on the wall--voices arguing about what is or isn't Soviet and even the quality of Russian versus Czech tights. She views Soviet ballet as a dynamic enterprise negotiating the daily demands of a state cultural project and professional issues that often became an expression of political resistance."
--Lynn Garafola, Columbia University


"Ezrahi's study addresses the basic questions surrounding the mysteries of the production of art in the Soviet Union: Who called the shots, and how did they do it? Her meticulous archival research finally answers questions regarding the autonomy of the artist and institution, with analyses that are thoughtful, provocative, and illuminating."
--Tim Scholl, Oberlin College

"[Enriches] the developing sense of how Soviet artists worked with and against the official dictates of their time, and how they responded to the incidental squabbles and long-term preoccupations with which they had to contend. . . . Some vastly entertaining examples of the kind of bone-headed rhetoric still directed at adventurous work in the arts today (and not just in Russia) is what one might term an expected, but still welcome, bonus."

"--Times Literary Supplement"


"In "Swans of the Kremlin" Christina Ezrahi reconstructs long-ago debates and makes us hear--as though we were flies on the wall--voices arguing about what is or isn't Soviet and even the quality of Russian versus Czech tights. She views Soviet ballet as a dynamic enterprise negotiating the daily demands of a state cultural project and professional issues that often became an expression of political resistance."
--Lynn Garafola, Columbia University
In "Swans of the Kremlin" Christina Ezrahi reconstructs long-ago debates and makes us hear as though we were flies on the wall voices arguing about what is or isn t Soviet and even the quality of Russian versus Czech tights. She views Soviet ballet as a dynamic enterprise negotiating the daily demands of a state cultural project and professional issues that often became an expression of political resistance.
Lynn Garafola, Columbia University"
[Enriches] the developing sense of how Soviet artists worked with and against the official dictates of their time, and how they responded to the incidental squabbles and long-term preoccupations with which they had to contend. . . . Some vastly entertaining examples of the kind of bone-headed rhetoric still directed at adventurous work in the arts today (and not just in Russia) is what one might term an expected, but still welcome, bonus.
Times Literary Supplement"
As dramatic as any of the grand ballets, Ezrahi s investigation delves into the storied past of Russian ballet as the paragon of choreographic and balletic superiority and as a symbol of cultural supremacy under the Soviet regime. . . . Not only for ballet aficionados and history buffs, the author s effort is a distinguished and intricate view of the intersection of art and politics. In the end, Ezrahi proves that even though art may be political, great art is not only deceitful and complex, but can rise above any ideology.
ForeWord Reviews"
That dancing ballet has ever touched something vital in the Russian spirit we accept. That Russian ballet survived the extremes of Bolshevik revolution, adapted and yet remained true to itself, we know, and we rejoice to know. Ezrahi helps us to understand how and why.
The Financial Times"
In Swans of the Kremlin Christina Ezrahi reconstructs long-ago debates and makes us hear as though we were flies on the wall voices arguing about what is or isn t Soviet and even the quality of Russian versus Czech tights. She views Soviet ballet as a dynamic enterprise negotiating the daily demands of a state cultural project and professional issues that often became an expression of political resistance.
Lynn Garafola, Columbia University"
"[Enriches] the developing sense of how Soviet artists worked with and against the official dictates of their time, and how they responded to the incidental squabbles and long-term preoccupations with which they had to contend. . . . Some vastly entertaining examples of the kind of bone-headed rhetoric still directed at adventurous work in the arts today (and not just in Russia) is what one might term an expected, but still welcome, bonus."
--Times Literary Supplement
"Engaging, illuminating, and often provocative . . . A truly welcome addition to the field and recommended to scholars both of Soviet history and of the history of the performing arts more generally."
--American Historical Review
"This well-documented and thorough account of the artistic and political maneuvering that took place in Soviet ballet covers the first five decades of Soviet power, but its main focus is the complex ideology of the Khrushchev era and its various pressures on ballet. Christina Ezrahi shows that this pressure was a two-way process that involved what she has termed artistic repossession: artists' ability to maintain a semblance of artistic autonomy in the teeth of the 'Soviet cultural project'."
--Slavic Review
"An important achievement, which begins by confronting the primal question at the root of Soviet ballet: how this imperial-flavored art managed to survive the revolution."
--Kritika
"As dramatic as any of the grand ballets, Ezrahi's investigation delves into the storied past of Russian ballet as the paragon of choreographic and balletic superiority and as a symbol of cultural supremacy under the Soviet regime. . . . Not only for ballet aficionados and history buffs, the author's effort is a distinguished and intricate view of the intersection of art and politics. In the end, Ezrahi proves that even though art may be political, great art is not only deceitful and complex, but can rise above any ideology."
--ForeWord Reviews
"That dancing--ballet--has ever touched something vital in the Russian spirit we accept. That Russian ballet survived the extremes of Bolshevik revolution, adapted and yet remained true to itself, we know, and we rejoice to know. Ezrahi helps us to understand how and why."
--The Financial Times
"In Swans of the Kremlin Christina Ezrahi reconstructs long-ago debates and makes us hear--as though we were flies on the wall--voices arguing about what is or isn't Soviet and even the quality of Russian versus Czech tights. She views Soviet ballet as a dynamic enterprise negotiating the daily demands of a state cultural project and professional issues that often became an expression of political resistance."
--Lynn Garafola, Columbia University

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