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Serfdom, Society, and the Arts in Imperial RussiaThe Pleasure and the Power$
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Richard Stites

Print publication date: 2005

Print ISBN-13: 9780300108897

Published to Yale Scholarship Online: October 2013

DOI: 10.12987/yale/9780300108897.001.0001

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Playing the Provinces

Playing the Provinces

(p.221) 6 Playing the Provinces
Serfdom, Society, and the Arts in Imperial Russia

Richard Stites

Yale University Press

This chapter examines the history of theater in the provinces in imperial Russia. It explains that during the imperial period, theater ruled provincial cultural life and reached out to many more consumers than did literature, classical music, or fine art. The chapter also discusses the transformation of the theater from an elite engine of amusement and enlightenment in the capitals and on rural estates to a network of public entertainment centers open to all in scores of provincial and district towns. It suggests that the network of provincial theaters represented an expansion of public cultural space at the expense of the private sphere.

Keywords:   theater, provinces, imperial Russia, cultural life, public entertainment centers, provincial theaters, public cultural space

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