Picturing the Page: Illustrated Children’s Literature and Reading under Lenin and Stalin
Based on sources from rare book libraries in Russia and around the world, Picturing the Page offers a vivid exploration of illustrated children’s literature and reading under Lenin and Stalin – a period when mass publishing for children and universal public education became available for the first time in Russia. By analysing the illustrations in fairy tales, classic "adult" literature reformatted for children, and war-time picture books, Megan Swift elucidates the vital and multifaceted function of illustrated children’s literature in repurposing the past.
Picturing the Page demonstrates that while the texts of the past remained fixed, illustrations could slip between the pages to mediate and annotate that past, as well as connect with anti-religious, patriotic, and other campaigns that were central to Soviet children’s culture after the 1917 Revolution.
- World Rights
- Page Count: 240 pages
- Illustrations: 99
- Dimensions: 6.4in x 0.8in x 9.3in
"In compelling prose, Megan Swift offers a kaleidoscopic vision of Soviet history through her focus on images that shift with the times at points of tension between the present and the past. With firm scholarly grounding, Picturing the Page closely examines visual detail and contextualizes works within the ideological intricacies of key periods to uncover and explain telling Soviet rereadings of classic texts."
Sara Pankenier Weld, Associate Professor of Germanic and Slavic Studies, University of California, Santa Barbara
"With impressive scholarship Picturing the Page highlights both Russian and English-language materials, including critical monographs, periodicals, and rare illustrated books from the early revolutionary period."
Larissa Rudova, Professor of German and Russian, Pomona College
Author InformationMegan Swift is an associate professor of Russian Studies at the University of Victoria.
Table of contents
Introduction: Visualizations of a New Childhood
Part I: Fairy Tale Nation
1. The Battle for the Fairy Tale
2. The Poet, the Priest, and the Peasant
3. Up, Up, and Away on the Little Humpbacked Horse
Part II: The Afterlife of Russian Classics
4. The Bronze Horseman Rides Again
5. Demonizing Dostoevsky: Katorga and Notes from the House of the Dead
6. Anna Karenina and the Mother and Child Reunion
Part III: Children and the War
7. The Militarization of Children’s Literature and Culture
8. Child Martyrs and Heroes
9. Pochta: Circulation, Delivery, Return
Conclusion: Yesterday and Today
Subjects and Courses