Рафаэль Альберти в Советской России: поэт, политика и политики
This article examines the history of the third trip of the Spanish poet Rafael Alberti in the Soviet Union, held in 1937, and of his meeting with Stalin. Archival documents provide insight into the reasons that led the poet to take such a long journey. The study offers a new look at the pilgrimage of Western writers to the Soviet Union: Alberti himself was a skillful diplomat, and as representative of the Spanish Republic, managed to carry out his tasks and to achieve a positive decision of Moscow on the convening of the Second International Congress of Writers in Spain in 1937.
The book examines two main topics related to the culture of the Spanish Republican exile in the Soviet Union: cultural centers of Spaniards in the USSR and the participation of Spanish exilées in Soviet cultural projects such as the review 'La Literatura Internacional' (later, Literatura Soviética) and the Spanish department of the publishing house Progress, in the period from 1937 until the 70ties. It's the first general study of the culture of the Spanish community in the Soviet Union based on the documents from the Spanish and Russian archives, news papers and journals, and testimonies of the Spanish exilées in the USSR.
During the 1920s and 1930s thousands of European and American writers, professionals, scientists, and artists came to record their impressions of the "Soviet experiment". The interwar pilgrimage of these Western intellectuals and fellow-travelers remains one of the most notorious episodes in political and intellectual history. Showcasing the Great Experiment, incorporating far-reaching analysis of the declassified archival records of the agencies charged with crafting the international image of communism, brings this story into new focus as one of the great cross-cultural and trans-ideological encounters of the twentieth century. While many visitors were profoundly affected by their Soviet tours, so too was the Soviet system itself: the early experiences of building showcases and teaching outsiders to perceive the future-in-the-making constitute a neglected part of the emergence of Stalinism at home. This pioneering work of transnational history develops a new framework for understanding how and why many of the twentieth century's greatest writers and thinkers, including Henri Barbusse, Theodore Dreiser, Lion Feuchtwanger, and André Gide, among others, ardently defended Stalin's USSR despite the unprecedented violence of its prewar decade. Probing little-known, covert entanglements between far-left and far-right ideological extremes, the work pays special attention to Soviet attempts to recruit and cooperate with far-right nationalists, including German <"National Bolsheviks,>" fascist intellectuals, and even members of the Nazi Party. The Soviet preoccupation with molding Western public opinion resulted in an influential contribution to the history of modern cultural diplomacy. Setting the revolutionary regime's innovations against the context of the treatment of foreigners in Russia from Muscovy on, Showcasing the Great Experiment argues that interwar Soviet methods mobilizing the intelligentsia for the international ideological contest directly paved the way for the cultural Cold War.
Readership: Scholars and students of Russian and Soviet history; Slavists; historians with an interest in transnational and cross-cultural history; historians of international cultural history