St. Petersburg: A Cultural History

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9780028740522: St. Petersburg: A Cultural History

A Russian e+a7migre+a7 writer draws a panoramic view of the cosmopolitan culture that thrived over three centuries in Russia's "gateway to the West," producing such figures as Stravinsky, Nabokov, Balanchine, and Chagall. 30,000 first printing. National ad/promo.

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From the Back Cover:

St Petersburg is one of the world?s most beautiful cities. Most of its baroque and neoclassical palaces and churches are modelled on those of Italy and France, in turn inspired by the temples of classical Greek and Rome. Yet it is situated on a swamp, a location so insalubrious that it took the lives of the thousands who built the city. Founded by Peter the Great on land seized from Sweden in 1703, the Tsar made it into his new capital and Russia?s gateway to Europe. Guarded by the Kronstadt Fortress, it was never conquered and under his successors the city achieved a splendour and cultural richness that vied with other European capitals. After the Golden Age of the 1830s when Pushkin and Lermontov wrote some of Russia?s greatest literature, famine and war would undermine political and cultural life, and the Revolution led to calamity. Nonetheless, in the dying embers of the old regime, music, art and theatre all thrived, creating a Silver Age which brought the city renewed renown. During the Soviet period, the city, renamed Leningrad, fell into a Cinderella-like slumber, with Moscow taking primacy. Yet it survived both wars to enjoy a revival after the fall of the Soviet Union under its old name. Neil Kent considers the extraordinary history of St Petersburg along with its political, religious, cultural and social dimensions, rich in stories and anecdotes from its various periods. Its musical heritage is unrivalled: Mussorgsky, Rimsky-Korsakov, Tchaikovsky and Rachmaninov are all associated with the city. A walk today through the streets and courtyards evokes the world of Dostoyevsky who immortalized its violent underbelly in his 1865 novel Crime and Punishment. He turned to Orthodoxy for inspiration, as does the modern city today. This revival has been multifaceted, its pictorial glories on display in the Russian Museum and Hermitage Gallery. As Kent stresses, St Petersburg remains a city of paradox, full of tragedy but also of breathtaking beauty and endurance.

About the Author:

Volkov was born in Russia and studies violin at the Leningrad Conservatory, receiving his diploma with honors. He has served as the artistic director of the Experimental Studio of Chamber Opera.

Solomon Volkov is the award-winning author of several notable books about Russian culture, including "St. Petersburg: A Cultural History" and "Shostakovich and Stalin," published worldwide. After moving to the United States from the Soviet Union, he became a cultural commentator for Voice of America and later for Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, broadcasting to the USSR (and later, Russia), where he discussed contemporary artistic developments in his former homeland. He lives in New York City with his wife, Marianna.
The prizewinning translator Antonina W. Bouis is known for her work with contemporary Russian literature.

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Volkov, Solomon
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ISBN 10: 0028740521 ISBN 13: 9780028740522
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Solomon Volkov
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Volkov, Solomon
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Solomon Volkov, Antonia W. Bouis (Translator)
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Descripción The Free Press / Simon & Schuster, 1995. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. Nº de ref. de la librería DADAX0028740521

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