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The Commissar Vanishes

by David King

by David King

The Commissar Vanishes
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item code: 15415

This brand new edition of David King’s lauded visual history is a unique and brilliant study into the doctoring and propogandising of Soviet photographs by Stalin’s regime. From the creator of the award-winning ‘Red Star Over Russia’

'The Commissar Vanishes' offers a chilling look at how Joseph Stalin manipulated the science of photography to advance his own political career and to erase the memory of his victims.

On Stalin’s orders, purged rivals were airbrushed from group portraits, and crowd scenes were altered to depict even greater legions of the faithful. For example, a 1919 photograph showing a large crowd of Bolsheviks clustered around Lenin, became, with the aid of the retoucher, an intimate portrait of Lenin and Stalin sitting alone, and then, in a later version, of Stalin by himself.

In each case, the juxtaposition of the original and the doctored images yields a fascinating, terrifying and tragic insight into one of the darkest chapters of modern history.

  • Author David King
  • Pages 192pp
  • Number of illustrations 200 colour illustrations
  • Dimensions 295 x 250 mm
  • Paperback yes
  • Publisher Tate Publishing
  • ISBN No. 978 1 84976 251 9
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