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The Living And The Dead: The Rise And Fall Of The Cult Of World War II In Russia
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The Living And The Dead: The Rise And Fall Of The Cult Of World War II In Russia

3.67  ·  Rating details ·  43 ratings  ·  5 reviews
This eye-opening book shows how Communist state and party authorities stage-managed the Soviets' memory of World War II, transforming a national trauma into a heroic exploit that glorified the party while systematically concealing the disastrous mistakes and criminal cruelties committed by the Stalinist tyranny.
Paperback, 264 pages
Published August 10th 1995 by Basic Books (first published August 1st 1994)
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3.67  · 
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 ·  43 ratings  ·  5 reviews


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Mikey B.
This book was somewhat disappointing – and because the publication date is 1994 it is does not reflect current developments.

It is composed of a series of essays which were unconnected to each other. There was an interesting one on groups who go to World War II battle sites to unearth the dead in order to give them a proper burial. There is also another unjarring essay on another type of people who go to massacre sites (most likely Jewish victims) and extract saleable remains like gold teeth. Som
...more
Dan Bradfield
May 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
For a work of scholarship, Dr. Tumarkin’s still remains a must read in Soviet memory of the Great Patriotic War. However, she transcends mere scholarly work with a touching mediation on her own experience of dealing with loved ones’ deaths intermixed with a society grappling with the horror of epidemic death.

A masterwork of historical writing and writing in general.
James
Nov 16, 2007 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: all who breathe
Nina Tumarkin makes scholarship and insight about Russian culture into a brilliant metaphor: digging in "the Valley of Death" in the age of Perestroika with the Russian youth group Dozor ("Patrol," the members of which she calls "Antigone's children") to disinter, clean, catalogue and identify (if possible) the bones of the one million soldiers (Russian and German) who died there. The fighting around the ancient city of Rzhev, northwest of Moscow, had gone on almost unremittingly from 1941 to sp ...more
Nancy
Jun 05, 2010 rated it really liked it
I read this for part of my Oral Narrative class. It's an interesting look at the relationship between propaganda and memory when viewed through the lens of personal loss, and a rather explicit picture of what happens when patriotism is so narrowly defined and instructed through governmental movements. Not a light and airy read, but by no means tedious. A little repetitive at times, but the blending of Russian history (and redefined history) and personal narrative gave seemingly unrelated history ...more
Highjump
Dec 30, 2010 rated it it was amazing
A.MAZE.ING. If you want to understand Russia at any point post 1945, you need to understand their relationship to the Great Patriotic War (WWII). This book is a outdated, but still a must read for anyone interested in WWII history or Russia.
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