Saving Stalin's Imperial City is the history of the successes and failures in historic preservation and of Leningraders' determination to honor the memory of the terrible siege the city had endured during World War II. The book stresses the counterintuitive nature of Stalinist policies, which allocated scarce wartime resources to save historic monuments of the tsarist and imperial past even as the very existence of the Soviet state was being threatened, and again after the war, when housing, hospitals, and schools needed to be rebuilt. Postwar Leningrad was at the forefront of a concerted restoration effort, fueled by commemorations that glorified the city's wartime experience, encouraged civic pride, and mobilized residents to rebuild their hometown. For Leningrad, the restoration of monuments and commemorations of the siege were intimately intertwined, served similar purposes, and were mutually reinforcing.
Steven Maddox is Assistant Professor of History at Canisius College.
Acknowledgments Introduction 1. Old Petersburg, Preservation Movements, and the Soviet State's "Turn to the Past" 2. These Monuments Must Be Protected!: Leningrad's Imperial Cityscape at War. 3. Projecting Soviet Power: Historic Restoration as Commemoration in Postwar Leningrad 4. "When Ivan Comes, There Will be Nothing Left": Rebuilding and Reimagining the Historic Monuments in Leningrad's Suburbs 5. Becoming "Leningraders": Official Commemorations of the Blockade 6. Cold War Complications: Soviet Patriotism, Historic Restoration, and the End of Blockade Commemorations Conclusion Notes Bibliography Index