Volume 1: Russian Culture in War and Revolution, 1914-22: Book 2. Political Culture, Identities, Mentalities, and Memory

Murray Frame, Boris Kolonitskii, Steven G. Marks, and Melissa K. Stockdale, eds.

This book is one of a two-part collection of original essays on the cultural history of Russia from the outbreak of the First World War in 1914 to the establishment of the Soviet Union in 1922. The chapters in both parts of Russian Culture in War and Revolution represent the work of an international group of scholars. They explore the relationship between the crises of that period and the multifaceted dimensions of culture. The result is a diverse and stimulating array of essays on subjects that range from the experience of cultural institutions and the arts, to aspects of identity and the production of meaning in popular culture. Many of the topics covered in the two books have rarely, if ever, been explored across the 1914–22 period as a whole. Through close analysis of the institutional and symbolic contexts of Russian cultural life, and incorporating substantial new research, the chapters in the two books collectively advance our understanding of Russia’s experience of the First World War, its relationship to the early Soviet period, and the complex memory of war and revolution. An additional important theme addressed by the collections is the extent to which the 1917 revolutions were a turning point in Russian culture. The findings of Russian Culture in War and Revolution demonstrate that cultural life was not only tightly intertwined with its social and political contexts, but that the wider history of Russia’s Great War and Revolution cannot be fully comprehended without due attention to culture in its broadest sense. The books are part of a broader centennial series on “Russia’s Great War and Revolution, 1914–22.”

Book reviews

Review by Michael C. Hickey in "Revolutionary Russia," vol. 29, 2016