The purpose of this guide is to facilitate researching Russian and Soviet cinema in the variety of online and printed resources at University of California, Berkeley Library. The guide contains a large selection of databases, books, and reference material
Composing for the Red Screen by Kevin BartigSound film captivated Sergey Prokofiev during the final two decades of his life: he considered composing for nearly two dozen pictures, eventually undertaking eight of them, all Soviet productions. Hollywood luminaries such as Gloria Swanson tempted him with commissions, and arguably morepeople heard his film music than his efforts in all other genres combined. Films for which Prokofiev composed, in particular those of Sergey Eisenstein, are now classics of world cinema. Drawing on newly available sources, Composing for the Red Screen examines - for the first time - the full extentof this prodigious cinematic career.Bartig examines how Prokofiev's film music derived from a self-imposed challenge: to compose "serious" music for a broad audience. The picture that emerges is of a composer seeking an individual film-music voice, shunning Hollywood models and objecting to his Soviet colleagues' ideologicallyexpedient film songs. Looking at Prokofiev's film music as a whole - with well-known blockbusters like Alexander Nevsky considered alongside more obscure or aborted projects - reveals that there were multiple solutions to the challenge, each with varying degrees of success. Prokofiev carefullybalanced his own populist agenda, the perceived aesthetic demands of the films themselves, and, later on, Soviet bureaucratic demands for accessibility.
Internationalist Aesthetics by Edward TyermanFollowing the failure of communist revolutions in Europe, in the 1920s the Soviet Union turned its attention to fostering anticolonial uprisings in Asia. China, divided politically between rival military factions and dominated economically by imperial powers, emerged as the Comintern's prime target. At the same time, a host of prominent figures in Soviet literature, film, and theater traveled to China, met with Chinese students in Moscow, and placed contemporary China on the new Soviet stage. They sought to reimagine the relationship with China in the terms of socialist internationalism--and, in the process, determine how internationalism was supposed to look and feel in practice. Internationalist Aesthetics offers a groundbreaking account of the crucial role that China played in the early Soviet cultural imagination. Edward Tyerman tracks how China became the key site for Soviet debates over how the political project of socialist internationalism should be mediated, represented, and produced. The central figure in this story, the avant-garde writer Sergei Tret'iakov, journeyed to Beijing in the 1920s and experimented with innovative documentary forms in an attempt to foster a new sense of connection between Chinese and Soviet citizens. Reading across genres and media from reportage and biography to ballet and documentary film, Tyerman shows how Soviet culture sought an aesthetics that could foster a sense of internationalist community. He reveals both the aspirations and the limitations of this project, illuminating a crucial chapter in Sino-Russian relations. Grounded in extensive sources in Russian and Chinese, this cultural history bridges Slavic and East Asian studies and offers new insight into the transnational dynamics that shaped socialist aesthetics and politics in both countries.
The Russian Cinema Reader by Rimgaila Salys (Editor)This two-volume reader is intended to accompany undergraduate courses in the history of Russian cinema and Russian culture through film. Each volume consists of newly commissioned essays, excerpts from English language criticism and translations of Russian language essays on subtitled films which are widely taught in American and British courses on Russian film and culture. The arrangement is chronological: Volume one covers twelve films from the beginning of Russian film through the Stalin era; volume two covers twenty films from the Thaw era to the present. General introductions to each period of film history (Early Russian Cinema, Soviet Silent Cinema, Stalinist Cinema, Cinema of the Thaw, Cinema of Stagnation, Perestroika and Post-Soviet Cinema) outline its cinematic significance and provide historical context for the non-specialist reader. Essays are accompanied by suggestions for further reading. The reader will be useful both for film studies specialists and for Slavists who wish to broaden their Russian Studies curriculum by incorporating film courses or culture courses with cinematic material. Volumes one and two may be ordered separately to accommodate the timeframe and contents of courses. Volume one films: Sten'ka Razin, The Cameraman's Revenge, The Merchant Bashkirov's Daughter, Child of the Big City, The Extraordinary Adventures of Mr. West in the Land of the Bolsheviks, Battleship Potemkin, Bed and Sofa, Man with a Movie Camera, Earth, Chapaev, Circus, Ivan the Terrible, Parts I and II. Volume two films: The Cranes are Flying, Ballad of a Soldier, Lenin's Guard, Wings, Commissar, The Diamond Arm, White Sun of the Desert, Solaris, Stalker, Moscow Does Not Believe in Tears, Repentance, Little Vera, Burnt by the Sun, Brother, Russian Ark, The Return, Night Watch, The Tuner, Ninth Company, How I Ended This Summer. Authors: Birgit Beumers, Robert Bird, David Bordwell, Mikhail Brashinsky, Oksana Bulgakova, Gregory Carlson, Nancy Condee, Julian Graffy, Jeremy Hicks, Andrew Horton, Steven Hutchings, Vida Johnson, Lilya Kaganovsky, Vance Kepley, Jr., Susan Larsen, Mark Lipovetsky, Tatiana Mikhailova, Elena Monastireva-Ansdell, Joan Neuberger, Vlada Petrić, Graham Petrie, Alexander Prokhorov, Elena Prokhorova, Rimgaila Salys, Elena Stishova, Vlad Strukov, Yuri Tsivian, Meghan Vicks, Josephine Woll, Denise J. Youngblood