Stalin’s Music Prize: Soviet Culture and Politics
Ten years ago, tasked with reviewing Marina Frolova-Walker’s first book Russian Music and Nationalism: From Glinka to Stalin (Yale University Press, 2007), I praised the author for dismantling long-standing myths and questioning the activities of some of the sacred cows of Russian music history, and for writing about the topics that “annoyed” her in a most enlightening and gripping way. After reading Frolova-Walker’s latest book, Stalin’s Music Prize: Soviet Culture and Politics, I was thrilled to see that the author is still busting myths, charting the hitherto unexplored areas of Soviet music history, and narrating a fascinating and often hilarious story of the rise-and-fall of Stalin’s prize for artistic achievements. Frolova-Walker provides brilliant insight into the inner workings of the Soviet institutional and cultural system, and the power play that affected the process of rewarding artists whose work was meant to stand for the best that Soviet culture had to offer.
Copyright (c) 2018 Ivana Medić
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