The Most Dangerous Art: Poetry, Politics, and Autobiography After the Russian Revolution
At a time in Russia's history when poets could be (and sometimes were) killed for a poem, the autobiographies of three prominent poets, Osip Mandelstam, Marina Tsvetaeva, and Boris Pasternak, became a courageous defense of poetry. The Most Dangerous Art shows how these autobiographies trace an emotional trajectory that corresponds to the intensity of the social and state pressures that threatened Russian poets from the early 1920s to the late 1950s. During a period when literature became intensely political, and creative freedom became intensely risky, these autobiographies proclaim poetry's immortality and defend the poet's right to individual creativity against an increasingly threatening Soviet literary hierarchy. Donald Loewen provides detailed close readings of these biographies and juxtaposes these readings with historical context. The Most Dangerous Art is an illuminating contribution to the study of Russian literature. The volume is of special interest to researchers of 20th century Russian literature and autobiography.
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abandon aesthetic Alexander Alexander Blok Anna Akhmatova argues arrested artistic attempt autobiographical prose autobiography Avvakum becomes biography Blok Bon.s Boris Pasternak CCPL Christopher Barnes Chuzhak contemporary critics death decade delstam demands devil Doctor Zhivago encounter figure final Fleishman force Fourth Prose genre genuine Gornfeld Herzen Hope identity ideological Jewish journal language LEF's letter literary groups living lyric Mandels Mandelstam describes Maria Aleksandrovna Marina Tsvetaeva Mayakovsky Moscow Mother and Music Nadezhda Mandelstam narrative never Nikolai Noise notion Osip Mandelstam Party passage poem poet poet's poetic poetry poetry's political powerful proletarian proletarian writers Propositions published Pushkin reader recognizes reference resistance response Revolution Russian poets Safe Conduct says sense Sergei shift shows Soviet literary Soviet Union speech Stalin story struggle suicide survived ternak theme tion Titsian Tabidze translation Tsve Tsvetaeva writes University Press Vladimir Mayakovsky voice word wrote Zhivago