Around the Bloc: Cold War Culture in the USSR and Eastern Europe
Drawing on oral and written history, memoirs, film, fiction, and essays in anthropology and sociology, we’ll resist the black/white readings imposed by the Iron Curtain and explore the dreams, fears, ethical concerns, cultural trends, and lifestyles of Cold War baby boomers in the USSR, Poland, Czechoslovakia, and Romania. Highlighted topics include: the privileges and discontents of postwar youth, the atomic age and its mutations, adventures in socialist consumer culture, gender politics and real life, making art about the socialist state of the absurd. All texts in English translation, films screened with English subtitles. One course.