Planning for a Communist Future: Professionalization, Nationalism, and Preservation Practice in Soviet Moscow, 1964-1974: The Ellison Center for REECAS MA Thesis

by Michael Brinley

Institution: University of Washington
Year: 2016
Posted: 02/05/2017
Record ID: 2066354
Full text PDF: http://hdl.handle.net/1773/36193


This paper explores the growth of historic preservation institutions in Soviet Moscow during the late 1960s and 70s. Beginning with the decade long creation of the General Plan of 1971 and exploring elements of professionalization, international exchanges, and citizen involvement in preservation battles, this paper complicates the narrative of emergent nationalism in Brezhnevera Moscow. Soviet preservationists worked within a bureaucratic structure that demonstrated a responsiveness to their activism, while high ranking officials, such as chief architect, Mikhail Posokhin, self-consciously cast Soviet planning and preservation practice as an alternative to Western and capitalist methods. Cases such as the rescuing of the belye palaty in Moscow’s central district demonstrate telling examples of Soviet citizenship and activism, as well as a dynamism rarely associated with “stagnation” era Soviet historiography.