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February 03 , 2009

Soviet Music and Society under Lenin and Stalin

The Baton and Sickle


This book investigates the place of music in Soviet society during the eras of Lenin and Stalin. It examines the different strategies adopted by composers and musicians in their attempts to carve out careers in a rapidly evolving society, discusses the role of music in Soviet society and people's lives, and shows how political ideology proved an inspiration as well as an inhibition. It explores how music and politics interacted in the lives of two of the twentieth century's greatest composers - Shostakovich and Prokofiev - and also in the lives of less well-known composers. In addition it considers the specialist composers of early Soviet musical propaganda, amateur music making, and musical life in the non-Russian republics. The book will appeal to specialists in Soviet music history, those with an interest in twentieth century music in general, and also to students of the history, culture and politics of the Soviet Union.

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