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Kak chetvero zheleznodorozhnykh rebiat sozdali pionerskii otriad

Как четверо железнодорожных ребят создали детский отряд

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Bolʹshevik Tom

Большевик Том

In 1925 Leningrad’s Brockhaus-Efron published 10,000 copies of Bolshevik Tom, a 10-page booklet of children’s verses by Nadezhda Pavlovich, accompanied by Boris Kustodiev’s seventeen black-and-white drawings. As all adult Soviet readers doubtless realized, Pavlovich pilfered Tom’s escapades from Mark Twain’s Adventures of Tom Sawyer (1876) without any acknowledgment, but inflected them ideologically in addition to dramatically altering Twain’s ending. Her goal was to deliver a political salvo against the harmful effects on children’s upbringing of an affluently indolent United States while promoting the Soviet Union as a haven for youth and, more broadly, as a land of happy, bustling unanimity.

Helena Goscilo

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This juxtaposition of new and old was a common trope in adult and children’s image culture of this period. Scientific innovation in particular was highly prized as a marker of progress in a new Soviet state, and the aerosani claimed right of place in this facet of the Soviet imaginary.

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O tom, kak starushka chernila pokupala

О том, как старушка чернила покупала

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