Socialist Cultures East and West
A Post-Cold War Reassessment
by Dubravka Juraga, M. Keith Booker, ed.
June 2002, 200pp, 6 1/8x9 1/4
1 volume, Praeger

Hardcover: 978-0-275-97490-9
$95, £74, 83€, A131
eBook Available: 978-0-313-01419-2
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Demonstrates that propagandistic Cold War depictions of socialism as inimical to genuine aesthetic achievement were inaccurate and misleading.

Decades of Western Cold War propaganda were designed to depict socialism as inimical to genuine aesthetic acheivement. Now, in the wake of the Cold War, it is becoming possible to reassess the past and present cultural productions of artists with socialist inclinations. The essays in this volume begin such a reassessment, finding that socialist cultural production in the 20th century, both as the official culture of the socialist East and as an oppositional culture in the capitalist West, has been rich and varied.

The volume focuses on socialist culture in the industrialized world, primarily Eastern Europe and the West. An introductory essay overviews socialist cultural productions of the 20th century, while the chapters that follow address a wide range of topics. These include Soviet socialist realist fiction and film musicals, the socialist drama of Bertolt Brecht, and British and American leftist fiction. The volume demonstrates that propagandistic Cold War depictions of socialism as a threat to artistic expression were inaccurate and misleading.

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