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The Red Atlantis (Culture And The Moving Image) Hardcover – November 3, 1998


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$84.50 FREE Shipping. Temporarily out of stock. Order now and we'll deliver when available. We'll e-mail you with an estimated delivery date as soon as we have more information. Your account will only be charged when we ship the item. Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.
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Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

For half a century, the cold war between the democratic, capitalist United States and the communist Soviet Union defined world politics. And then, in 1989, everything changed. The Warsaw Pact disintegrated, the USSR collapsed, and the Berlin Wall came down. Soon there was (almost) no communist culture left on the planet, just the cultural detritus of a "Communist utopia which, in fact, never existed." J. Hoberman of the Village Voice sifts through the wreckage of that culture, in a series of illuminating essays that take on everything from the Socialist Realist art movement to the novels of Victor Serge. Among the highlights is his "History of Communism in Twenty-Four Scenarios," a batch of film reviews that draws a line through Sergei Eisenstein's October ("the Soviet equivalent of the Sistine Chapel") and the original 1950s version of Invasion of the Body Snatchers to the Reagan-era Red Dawn.

There's also a splendid essay on Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, who were convicted by the U.S. government of giving H-bomb secrets to the Reds and--amidst much controversy--executed, and who, Hoberman concludes, "were framed for an activity that all available circumstantial and psychological evidence suggests that they committed." It's one of the most effective displays of Hoberman's grasp of history and culture, not to mention his erudite wit: "Someone must have denounced Julius Rosenberg, for without his having done anything wrong, he was arrested one fine evening by the FBI." --Ron Hogan

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"These essays, at once funny and heartbreaking, survey the work of Soviet and Eastern European artists, writers, and filmmakers. Hoberman is an expert gifted with high intellectual spirits, but he doesn't take cheap shots: he never lets us forget the pressures and dangers that affected even the most devoted Communists under Communism." --New Yorker "Zooming back and forth from Berlin to Moscow to the Lower East Side, J. Hoberman has compiled the best evocation of the lost world of Jewish communism since the historian Raphael Samuel's memoir of working-class East London in New Left Review." --The Lingua Franca Book Review "In J. Hoberman, the ruins of communist culture have found a passionate and erudite archeologist. A collection of essays on communist art, film, and literature, The Red Atlantis is an elegy for the 'Communist utopia which, in fact, never existed.'" --Dissent "This is a superb collection of essays--deft, penetrating, erudite, witty and altogether a pleasure to read." --Washington Post "Provocative, insightful, funny, J. Hoberman's The Red Atlantis explains how--with Philistines generally in charge--Communism, in contrast always to anti-Communism, managed to encourage some of the most interesting, most Jewish, and silliest art of the century." --Paul Buhle, co-author of Tender Comrades: A Backstory of the Hollywood Blacklist "Intelligently stitched together from Hoberman's many reviews, this volume introduces readers to the lost continent of communist culture...Well documented and written with enviable verve, this provocative book should reopen old debates and spark useful reevaluations of the countless compromised masterpieces produced by well-meaning but ultimately misguided intellectuals over more than 70 turbulent years." --Choice
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