Everyday Soviet Utopias: Planning, Design and the Aesthetics of Developed Socialism, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Everyday Soviet Utopias

Planning, Design and the Aesthetics of Developed Socialism, 1st Edition

By Anna Alekseyeva


274 pages | 21 B/W Illus.

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Hardback: 9781138497115
pub: 2019-01-22
eBook (VitalSource) : 9781351019781
pub: 2019-02-06
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This book explores how intellectuals of the later Soviet decades – the 1970s and 1980s – sought to bring about the socialist utopian world. It argues that the last two decades of the Soviet Union were not characterised by state withdrawal and malaise, as some scholars have argued; attempts to envisage and enact Utopia remained as imaginative and creative as ever. The book considers what these utopian ideas looked like through housing schemes, layouts of districts and cities, design of objects and interiors, and proposals for the organisation of family and social life. Relating developments in the Soviet Union to evolving social theory and postmodernism more broadly, the book draws transnational parallels between the intellectual history of east and west in the late twentieth century. 

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Introduction

Chapter 2: Social and economic control under developed socialism: themes and context

Part I: Everyday Urbanity

Chapter 3: Social life in the microdistrict: forging a new type of collective

Chapter 4: Humanised urban design: visions and realities of city planning

Part II: Domesticity and Khoziaistvo

Chapter 5: From ‘machine’ to ‘organism’: changing views on the nature of the living cell

Chapter 6: Khoziaistvo in the socialist city: organising byt and family life

Part III: Everyday Objects

Chapter 7: Managing consumption and rehabilitating the object-world

Chapter 8: Postmodernism with a Socialist Realist face?

Chapter 9: Conclusion

About the Author

Anna Alekseyeva completed her doctorate at the University of Oxford.

About the Series

Routledge Studies in the History of Russia and Eastern Europe

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Ethnic Studies / Asian American Studies