The Commissar Vanishes offers a chilling look at how one man – Joseph Stalin – manipulated the science of photography to advance his own political career and . Robert talks with author David King, an expert on Soviet photography who has just written a book called “The Commissar Vanishes. Courtesy of our good chum Randy comes this absolutely chilling photo gallery of manipulated images from Soviet Russia. The images above.

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I’m grateful to commissar for his wherewithal and determination. Crime Demographics Soviet people working class census Languages Linguistics. Lenin passes away, and his secular deification by Stalin begins.

Commissar Vanishes : NPR

Dec 06, Alyssa rated it it was amazing. Faced with the rewriting of history, Trotsky told the Stalinist regime: Liberal and monarchist forces, loosely organized into the White Armyimmediately went to war against the Bolsheviks’ Red Army.

You can vanushes your censorship even to photographic and moving-picture records of revolutionary events. For the past three decades, author and photohistorian David King has assembled the world’s largest archive of photographs, posters, and paintings from the Soviet era. Trotsky had given a speech that Stalin and others were abandoning revolutionary politics and Dzerzhinsky, the head of the secret police and supporter of Stalin, stepped up and screamed at Trotsky for two hours, then promptly had a heart attack and was dead that same day.

Antill, Peter; Dennis, Peter. Mexican Printsthat may only be possible from the distant perspective of time, place, and not truly understanding ckmmissar horrors that the art work attempted to vaniishes over. Families often self-censored family photos of the fallen to protec Fascinating and chilling book detailing the manipulation of photographs during Stalin’s rule in the U. David Aaronovitch argues in the summer issue of Index on Censorship magazine that historical drama can also be manipulative when it ignores details of the past.


Although the Bolsheviks looked to this mystical image of the party in order to legitimise their rule, vainshes should not be thought that this was necessarily cynical or even conscious on their part, at least at first.

Stalin and Lenin were masters of creating their own brand and writing their own story, and they were doing it nearly a century before anyone had heard of Facebook. Truly one of the most chilling books I have read recently. Inthree years after the book was published, Stalin purged much of the Uzbekistan leadership and Rodchenko defaced, inked over, and cut out all the faces of those purged in his own personal copy of the book. Although all governments lie about their activities and try to suppress unpleasant facts, and although much history is written to serve the paymasters, and even in the most open parliamentary democracies much is withheld from the probing historian, let alone the general public, official falsification under Stalinism was peculiarly intense and far-reaching.

The October Revolution ended the phase of the revolution instigated in February of that year, replacing Russia’s short-lived comissar parliamentary government with government by sovietscommiissar councils elected by bodies of workers and peasants.

To ask other readers questions about The Commissar Vanishesplease sign up. The first disc, The Commissar Vanishes xommissar, is a version of The Fall of Icarus that has been defaced similarly to the photographs reproduced in King’s book.

Aug 20, Dave rated it it was amazing Shelves: Views Read Edit View history. The vivid style that we have come to expect from David King is used to brilliant effect, showing how people who had fallen from grace literally disappeared from official photographs, and the continual purges meant that each revision had to be replaced by a further one, often until only Stalin remained.


Be the first to ask a question about The Commissar Vanishes. Articles containing Russian-language text Commons category link is locally defined Interlanguage link template link number. Highly recommended for those interested in history and mass media. Stalin, the Russians, and their war: The photo represented a historic moment, the defeat of Germany in a war that cost the Soviet Union tens of millions of lives.

For the man commonly referred to as the “Vanishing Commissar”, see Nikolai Yezhov. It was really interesting.

The Commissar Vanishes: The Falsification of Photographs and Art in Stalin’s Russia

Sep 19, Shaun marked it as to-read. This book is worth it alone for the many painstakingly sourced before and after shots of each censored picture. In the summer issue of Index on Censorship magazinewhich focuses on the legacy of the Russian Revolution deputy editor Jemimah Steinfeld writes:. In addition to the anti-pornographic law, such smuggling was prohibited by legal provisions giving the Soviet state the exclusive right to conduct foreign economic trade.

Even artists vanish too, for having expressed something too avant-garde, or for once having praised Trotsky some twenty years previously.