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Molotov's magic lantern : travels in Russian history

Author: Rachel Polonsky
Publisher: New York : Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 2012. ©2010
Edition/Format:   Print book : Biography : English : First American paperback editionView all editions and formats
Summary:
When the author, a British journalist, moves to Moscow, she discovers an apartment on Romanov Street that was once home to the Soviet elite. One of the most infamous neighbors was Stalin's henchman Vyacheslav Molotov, who was a participant in the collectivizations and the Great Purge, and also an ardent bibliophile. In what was formerly his apartment, she uncovers an extensive library and an old magic lantern, two  Read more...
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Details

Genre/Form: History
Named Person: Rachel Polonsky; Vyacheslav Mikhaylovich Molotov; Vyacheslav Mikhaylovich Molotov; Rachel Polonsky
Material Type: Biography
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Rachel Polonsky
ISBN: 9780374533205 0374533202 9780374211974 0374211973
OCLC Number: 859239895
Notes: "Originally published in 2010 by Faber and Faber Ltd., Great Britain as Molotov's magic lantern : a journey in Russian history"--T.p. verso.
Description: ix, 390 pages : illustrations ; 21 cm
Contents: Prologue --
Romanov --
Apartment 61 --
The banya --
Lutsino --
Mozzhinka --
Novgorod --
Staraya Russa --
Rostov-on-Don --
Taganrog --
Vologda --
Archangel --
Murmansk and Barentsburg --
Arshan and Irkutsk --
Ulan Ude and Kyakhta --
Epilogue.
Responsibility: Rachel Polonsky.

Abstract:

When the author, a British journalist, moves to Moscow, she discovers an apartment on Romanov Street that was once home to the Soviet elite. One of the most infamous neighbors was Stalin's henchman Vyacheslav Molotov, who was a participant in the collectivizations and the Great Purge, and also an ardent bibliophile. In what was formerly his apartment, she uncovers an extensive library and an old magic lantern, two things that lead her on an extraordinary journey throughout Russia. In this book, she visits the haunted cities and vivid landscapes of the books from Molotov's library: works by Chekhov, Dostoevsky, Pushkin, Akhmatova, and others, some of whom were sent to the Gulag by the very man who collected their books. With exceptional insight, she writes about the longings and aspirations of these Russian writers and others in the course of her travels from the Arctic to Siberia and from the forests around Moscow to the vast steppes. This work evokes the spirit of the great artists and the haunted past of a country ravaged by war, famine, and totalitarianism.

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