The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov discussion

The Master and Margarita
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Censorship > Censorship and The Master and Margarita: Background

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Kris (krisrabberman) | 313 comments Mod
This is a thread to discuss general background related to the role of censorship specifically in The Master and Margarita. We can share links to articles and websites on this topic, and discuss the political and cultural context that led to the censoring of the novel.


Kris (krisrabberman) | 313 comments Mod
I just found a good article: Stephen Lovell, "Bulgakov as Soviet Culture," The Slavonic and East European Review, Vol. 76, No. 1 (Jan., 1998), pp. 28-48. If any of you are interested in it, please send me your email address in a PM.


Aloha | 51 comments May I have that, Kris? Thanks!


Kris (krisrabberman) | 313 comments Mod
Aloha wrote: "May I have that, Kris? Thanks!"

Absolutely!


Aloha | 51 comments Got it! Thank you. This is an interesting article on the history.


Nataliya | 59 comments Kris wrote: "I just found a good article: Stephen Lovell, "Bulgakov as Soviet Culture," The Slavonic and East European Review, Vol. 76, No. 1 (Jan., 1998), pp. 28-48. If any of you are interested in it, please ..."

Kris, can I have a copy of that, too? PM sent.


Kris (krisrabberman) | 313 comments Mod
Nataliya wrote: "Kris wrote: "I just found a good article: Stephen Lovell, "Bulgakov as Soviet Culture," The Slavonic and East European Review, Vol. 76, No. 1 (Jan., 1998), pp. 28-48. If any of you are interested i..."

Hi Nataliya - I just sent you the article, and some bonus ones....


Nataliya | 59 comments Thanks, Kris! I'm looking forward to making my way through all of them!
I'm currently reading an article about the parallels between TM&M and Bulgakov's feuilletons (thanks, Stanford library site!). I'm excited to read more!


Kris (krisrabberman) | 313 comments Mod
Nataliya wrote: "Thanks, Kris! I'm looking forward to making my way through all of them!
I'm currently reading an article about the parallels between TM&M and Bulgakov's feuilletons (thanks, Stanford library site!..."


My pleasure! I just love searching for & reading journal articles (geek alert). Let me know how the one you are reading is.


message 10: by Jim (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jim (Neurprof58) | 54 comments Kris wrote: "I just found a good article: Stephen Lovell, "Bulgakov as Soviet Culture," The Slavonic and East European Review, Vol. 76, No. 1 (Jan., 1998), pp. 28-48. If any of you are interested in it, please ..."

Yes please, and thanks in advance! I think you have my email, but will send a PM just in case.


message 11: by Kris (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kris (krisrabberman) | 313 comments Mod
Jim wrote: "Kris wrote: "I just found a good article: Stephen Lovell, "Bulgakov as Soviet Culture," The Slavonic and East European Review, Vol. 76, No. 1 (Jan., 1998), pp. 28-48. If any of you are interested i..."

Coming your way!


message 12: by Kris (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kris (krisrabberman) | 313 comments Mod
Another article - cross-posted from the Historical Background thread: I also just found and downloaded a PDF of a journal article by Orlando Figes - "Private Life in Stalin's Russia: Family Narratives, Memory and Oral History," History Workshop Journal , No. 65 (Spring, 2008), pp. 117-137. Once again, if anyone wants to see the Figes article, PM me your email address and I'll send it over.


Carol (carollynncrayton) | 33 comments I would like the latest article mentioned. I believe u have my email? I feel bad making you do all this extranneous emailing though!


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Kris (krisrabberman) | 313 comments Mod
No worries! I love it.


Aloha | 51 comments Yes, please!

Kris wrote: "Another article - cross-posted from the Historical Background thread: I also just found and downloaded a PDF of a journal article by Orlando Figes - "Private Life in Stalin's Russia: Family Narrati..."


Nataliya | 59 comments Kris wrote: "I just found a good article: Stephen Lovell, "Bulgakov as Soviet Culture," The Slavonic and East European Review, Vol. 76, No. 1 (Jan., 1998), pp. 28-48. If any of you are interested in it, please ..."

Thanks fir the article, Kris! It was rather interesting.

This part really made me think:

By the late 1980s, the Act 3 finale had become more meaningful, and members of the intelligentsia were more inclined to reflect on the distinction between 'svet' and 'pokoi'. Now the production was intended to make its audience reflect on the 'irrevocable course of human life, on our responsibility for the underfulfilled lives of even the most talented and energetic people'. It had become clear that 'No, of course manuscripts don't burn but they do gather a lot of dust'. Gudkova also implies, however, that these subtleties were unlikely to be appreciated by the general theatre-going public - to judge by its reactions, it was inclined to see the production as a succession of catch-phrases and witticisms, and seemed to ignore its moral import. The audience, in other words, had not evolved along with the production. More precisely, the audience had expanded: it now included those for whom Master i Margarita was popular culture.


Nataliya | 59 comments Kris wrote: "Another article - cross-posted from the Historical Background thread: I also just found and downloaded a PDF of a journal article by Orlando Figes - "Private Life in Stalin's Russia: Family Narrati..."

I would love to read it. Thanks!


message 18: by Kris (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kris (krisrabberman) | 313 comments Mod
Nataliya wrote: "Kris wrote: "Another article - cross-posted from the Historical Background thread: I also just found and downloaded a PDF of a journal article by Orlando Figes - "Private Life in Stalin's Russia: F..."

Incoming!


message 19: by Kris (last edited Aug 28, 2012 05:48PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kris (krisrabberman) | 313 comments Mod
Nataliya wrote: "Kris wrote: "I just found a good article: Stephen Lovell, "Bulgakov as Soviet Culture," The Slavonic and East European Review, Vol. 76, No. 1 (Jan., 1998), pp. 28-48. If any of you are interested i..."

I really liked Lovell's attention to so many different readers and publics for TM&M -- and he makes clear the challenges in understanding audience reception. The theatre discussions were interesting, especially considering Bulgakov's work in the theatre. (I have to admit I liked the graffiti examples too.)

The whole idea of the fight for Bulgakov between the intelligentsia and mass culture also was interesting. I like the idea of a large section of a society being involved passionately in determining the meaning and significance of a novel, especially one written 30+ years earlier.

This was a quote that stood out to me: "The main function of the novel is to spur readers to ask searching questions and to sense the limitations of their own perspectives. Master i Margarita opens up reading as a personal - not shared or universal activity, and hence it subverts the myth of the culturally homogeneous 'mass Soviet reader'." I'm going to keep that in mind with my second reading of the novel.


Aloha | 51 comments This is really interesting conversation. I can't wait to finish the science discussion that I'm having in another forum so I can mentally focus on this.


Nataliya | 59 comments Kris wrote: "This was a quote that stood out to me: "The main function of the novel is to spur readers to ask searching questions and to sense the limitations of their own perspectives. Master i Margarita opens up reading as a personal - not shared or universal activity, and hence it subverts the myth of the culturally homogeneous 'mass Soviet reader'." I'm going to keep that in mind with my second reading of it."

I loved that part as well. This book indeed leads in very different, very personal and subjective experiences of the story, with many interpretations and reactions possible. This, I think, is the work of a true genius.

I did really like the background on Bulgakov novel's publishing history and reception in the Soviet Union (and Hungary). It is hard for me to imagine that relatively recently there were Russian people unfamiliar with Bulgakov's work which by now has really become mainstream, for the good and the bad that comes with it.


message 22: by Kris (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kris (krisrabberman) | 313 comments Mod
This article could be of interest to some of you: Isaiah Berlin, "The Arts in Russia Under Stalin," The New York Review of Books (October 19, 2000): http://www.nybooks.com/articles/archi...


Aloha | 51 comments Thanks, Kris!


Aloha | 51 comments I found a great site on TM&M. Not sure where to put it, so I'll post the link here.

http://cr.middlebury.edu/public/russi...


Aloha | 51 comments I came upon a section on Manichaeism at this site.

Manichaeism:
A dualistic religion originally founded in Persia. Manichaean dualistic ideas may have influenced Bulgakov's vision of the spheres of Woland/Yeshua.

I was going to approach my review based on the dualistic belief, but I didn't have a particular name for it. This gives me further material for research.


Aloha | 51 comments The link to this is dead on the site above, but I did a search and found the article.

The myth of Goethe's Faust in The Master and Margarita by Bulgakov:

http://www.unisa.ac.za/default.asp?Cm...


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Kris (krisrabberman) | 313 comments Mod
Aloha - if you are interested in some articles I have on TM&M and manichaean and gnostic interpretations, and other approaches to dualism in the novel, let me know.


Aloha | 51 comments Yes, I am interested, Kris. Thank you.


Aloha | 51 comments I am loving these background articles you got for me, Kris. Such a wealth of information. I don't mind delaying my review just to read these. My reviews are basically a record of what I learned about the book. It's more than what is called for in a review, but I like research. You can find all sorts of fascinating information.


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Kris (krisrabberman) | 313 comments Mod
Aloha wrote: "I am loving these background articles you got for me, Kris. Such a wealth of information. I don't mind delaying my review just to read these. My reviews are basically a record of what I learned ..."

I'm so glad, Aloha. I included some of the articles from the Weeks volume, and then expanded my search. There's so much amazing research on the novel.


message 31: by Jess (new) - rated it 5 stars

Jess | 1 comments Hi Kris,

Would I be able to grab a copy of the Lovell article too please? My access through university archives only goes back to 2001, unfortunately! I'll have a look on the JSTOR database later & see if I can find any other articles of interest.

Thanks,
Jess


message 32: by Kris (new) - rated it 5 stars

Kris (krisrabberman) | 313 comments Mod
Jess wrote: "Hi Kris,

Would I be able to grab a copy of the Lovell article too please? My access through university archives only goes back to 2001, unfortunately! I'll have a look on the JSTOR database later ..."


Absolutely, Jess! I have lots of articles, so if you feel like you'd like me to send you a whole bunch, just let me know. PM me your email address, and I'll send it/them right along to you.


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