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Artistic Factions in the 1920s. Lenin: conservative--traditional European culture is good and should be preserved Proletarians: ideological--Soviet art should be made for, by and about the working class

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artistic factions in the 1920s
Artistic Factions in the 1920s
  • Lenin: conservative--traditional European culture is good and should be preserved
  • Proletarians: ideological--Soviet art should be made for, by and about the working class
  • Avant-gardists: innovation for the new society--abstract, pure forms, constructivism, functionalism
the path to socialist realism
The path to Socialist Realism
  • 1921-28: NEP, relative artistic freedom under Lunacharsky, Commissar of Education
  • 1928: First Five-Year Plan, beginning of tighter government control
  • 1932: All artistic organizations disbanded by government decree and Unions formed
  • 1934: First Congress of the Union of Soviet Writers, Socialist Realism proclaimed
socialist realism
Socialist Realism
  • Socialist realism, being the basic method of Soviet literature and literary criticism, requires from the artist a truthful, historically concrete representation of reality in its revolutionary development. Moreover, truth and historical completeness of artistic representation must be combined with the task of ideological transformation and education of the working man in the spirit of Socialism.
          • Andrei Zhdanov, Speech at First Writers Union Congress, 1934
socialist realism in practice
Socialist Realism in practice
  • Artists are “Engineers of human souls”
  • Positive hero
  • Optimistic
  • Three principles:
    • ideological (ideinost’)
    • party-line (partiinost’)
    • people-oriented (narodnost’)
models of the soc realist novel
Models of the Soc. Realist novel
  • Gorky: Mother (1907)
  • Furmanov: Chapaev (1923)
  • Gladkov: Cement (1925)
  • Kataev: Time Forward (1932)
  • N. Ostrovsky: How Steel Was Tempered (1934)
  • Fadeev: The Young Guard (1946)