Entangled East and West: Cultural Diplomacy and Artistic Interaction During the Cold War
Despite increasing scholarship on the cultural Cold War, focus has been persistently been fixed on superpowers and their actions, missing the important role played by individuals and organizations all over Europe during the Cold War years.
This volume focuses on cultural diplomacy and artistic interaction between Eastern and Western Europe after 1945. It aims at providing an essentially European point of view on the cultural Cold War, providing fresh insight into little known connections and cooperation in different artistic fields. Chapters of the volume address photography and architecture, popular as well as classical music, theatre and film, and fine arts. By examining different actors ranging from individuals to organizations such as universities, the volume brings new perspective on the mechanisms and workings of the cultural Cold War. Finally, the volume estimates the pertinence of the Cold War and its influence in post-1991 world.
The volume offers an overview on the role culture played in international politics, as well as its role in the Cold War more generally, through interesting examples and case studies
The first steps of the European International Style in architecture coincided with the time of extraordinary changes in Russian culture, caused by Revolution of 1917. In the 1920s, though for a very short period, Russian constructivists had the opportunity to implement their most progressive ideas on a large scale.It is not surprising that the radical changes in Russian artistic life elicited a strong interest among many Dutch architects. In the 1920s and the 1930s the Netherlands was at the forefront of the nascent architectural experiments of the Modern Movement. Furthermore, Dutch architects were among the pioneers of residential dwelling projects and social engineering methods, searching for ways to adapt and modernize urban planning. This was the area in which the interests of Dutch architects coincided with the research of their Soviet colleagues. Despite different economic and political circumstances, as well as the fact that many European artists did not accept Soviet ideology, there were close contacts between the two. These contacts had their influence on Dutch architectural practice and we should take them in consideration when talking about the post-WWII Reconstruction period in the Netherlands. This chapter examines the Dutch and Soviet architectural experiments and what forms of influence and exchange took place between the two.