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Lot's Wife and the Venus of Milo

Lot's Wife and the Venus of Milo
Conflicting Attitudes to the Cultural Heritage in Modern Russia


  • Date Published: April 2011
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9780521157902

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About the Authors
  • Professor Thompson's subject is the uneasy position of art within Marxist ideology: what part can the arts of the past play in the new society? On the one hand there was the sense of a continuing cultural tradition, more or less independent of ideological change symbolized in the image of the Venus of Milo, and on the other, the iconoclastic demands for a complete break with the past in all its forms made by revolutionary artists, who found in the myth of Lot's wife a symbol of the attractions of the past. Originally published in 1978, the book discusses the problems and paradoxes involved from a general theoretical point of view and in the work of individual artists. Professor Thompson suggests that the power inherent in art to resist social and ideological changes undermines all rationalistic theories of art, those of the Marxists and those fashionable in the West.

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    Product details

    • Date Published: April 2011
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9780521157902
    • length: 178 pages
    • dimensions: 216 x 140 x 10 mm
    • weight: 0.23kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Part I:
    1. The problem of art: i. Marxism
    ii. The Symbolists
    iii. The Futurists
    iv. Correspondence from Two Corners
    2. The necessity of art: the last years of Aleksandr Blok
    3. The redundancy of art: Soviet and Marxist views of art in the 1920s
    Part II:
    4. The secret of art: two Soviet myths: i. Khlebnikov's Night Search
    ii. Bagritsky's February
    5. The difference of art: some Soviet writers of the 1920s and 1930s: i. Zamyatin
    ii. Pil'nyak
    iii. Red Cavalry
    iv. Yuriy Olesha
    v. Andrey Platonov
    6. The fact of art: Leonid Leonov
    7. Some properties of art
    Select bibliography

  • Author

    Boris Thomson

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