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Music on the frontline : Nicolas Nabokov's struggle against communism and middlebrow culture

Author: Ian Wellens
Publisher: Aldershot, Hants, England ; Burlington, VT : Ashgate, 2002.
Edition/Format:   eBook : Document : Biography : English
Summary:
"The story of Nicolas Nabokov's involvement with the CIA-funded Congress for Cultural Freedom (CCF) is a story of the politics and sociology of culture: how music was used for political ends and how intellectual groups formed and functioned during the Cold War. The seemingly independent CCF, established to counteract Soviet successes in the fields of arts and intellectual life, appointed Nabokov (a Russian emigre
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Details

Genre/Form: History
Additional Physical Format: (DLC) 2001048708
Named Person: Nicolas Nabokov; Nicolas Nabokov
Material Type: Biography, Document, Internet resource
Document Type: Internet Resource, Computer File
All Authors / Contributors: Ian Wellens
ISBN: 9781315090818 1315090813
OCLC Number: 1100465760
Description: 1 online resource (xiii, 151 pages.)
Contents: Great Books and Wise Men: Nabokov's Road to the 1950 Berlin Congress --
Waking the Twilight Sleepers I: On Soviet Music and Shostakovich --
Waking the Twilight Sleepers II: On Provincialism and Prokofiev --
'A Very Popular Fiasco': The 1952 Festival in Paris --
Filling the Gap: The CCF as Surrogate Ministry of Culture --
Paris/New York: Congress Divided --
One End Against the Middle: Intellectuals Behind the High Culture Stockade --
Authority and Exclusion: The Cold War and 'Difficult' Music.
Responsibility: Ian Wellens.

Abstract:

"The story of Nicolas Nabokov's involvement with the CIA-funded Congress for Cultural Freedom (CCF) is a story of the politics and sociology of culture: how music was used for political ends and how intellectual groups formed and functioned during the Cold War. The seemingly independent CCF, established to counteract Soviet successes in the fields of arts and intellectual life, appointed Nabokov (a Russian emigre and minor composer) as its Secretary General in 1951. Over the next ten years he gave music a high profile in the work of the organisation, producing four international musical festivals, the first and most ambitious of which was 1952's L'Oeuvre du XXe Siecle in Paris, an event which showcased the work of no less than 62 composers."

"As Ian Welles reveals, Nabokov's musical involvement with the CCF was in fact a struggle on two fronts. Apparently, a defence of Western modernism against 'backward', 'provincial' Soviet music, Nabokov's writings show this to have meshed closely with the domestic concern - shared by many intellectuals - that high culture was being undermined by an increasingly aware middle class. His attacks on Soviet cultural policy, and his unflattering assessments of Shostakovich, are seen to be not merely salvos in the cold war but part of a broader campaign aimed at securing the authority and prestige of intellectuals."--Jacket.

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