Book ID: CBB334243328

Building Stalinism: The Moscow Canal and the Creation of Soviet Space (2018)


Cynthia A. Ruder (Author)

I. B. Tauris

Publication Date: 2018
Physical Details: 352
Language: English

Today the 80-mile-long Moscow Canal is a source of leisure for Muscovites, a conduit for tourists and provides the city with more than 60% of its potable water. Yet the past looms heavy over these quotidian activities: the canal was built by Gulag inmates at the height of Stalinism and thousands died in the process. In this wide-ranging book, Cynthia Ruder argues that the construction of the canal physically manifests Stalinist ideology and that the vertical, horizontal, underwater, ideological, artistic and metaphorical spaces created by it resonate with the desire of the state to dominate all space within and outside the Soviet Union. Ruder draws on theoretical constructs from cultural geography and spatial studies to interpret and contextualise a variety of structural and cultural products dedicated to, and in praise of, this signature Stalinist construction project. Approached through an extensive range of archival sources, personal interviews and contemporary documentary materials these include a diverse body of artefacts - from waterways, structures, paintings, sculptures, literary and documentary works, and the Gulag itself. Building Stalinism concludes by analysing current efforts to reclaim the legacy of the canal as a memorial space that ensures that those who suffered and died building it are remembered.

Reviewed By

Review Steven A. Barnes (2020) Review of "Building Stalinism: The Moscow Canal and the Creation of Soviet Space". American Historical Review (pp. 2036-2037). unapi

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Authors & Contributors
Carse, Ashley
Mukerji, Chandra
Bijker, W. E.
Hicks, Geoffrey
Citino, Nathan J.
Marklund, Andreas
Journal of Cold War Studies
Journal of the History of Biology
Environmental History
MIT Press
Princeton University Press
Aalborg University Press
University of California Press
Cornell University Press
The MIT Press
Technology and politics
Science and politics
Roads and highways
Disraeli, Benjamin
Lysenko, Trofim Denisovich
Michurin, Ivan Vladimirovich
Time Periods
20th century
19th century
21st century
17th century
18th century
20th century, early
United States
Soviet Union
Suez Canal (Egypt)
International Telecommunications Satellite Organization

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