The Soviet system of rule that developed under Stalin featured management of the arts by political authorities, and the main doctrine inspiring and justifying this activity was "socialist realism". The definition of socialist realism emerged through a fluid process, marked by twists and turns and at times even contestation, in which critics, scholars, and creators alike gave the doctrine practical meaning. Jirí Smrz's Symphonic Stalinism tells this story for music, and the author examines it in much greater detail than any other scholar before him. In the process, Smrz emphasizes the crucial role played by musicologists, which was probably unique in the history of that discipline internationally.
Jir'i Smrz received his PhD in History at the University of Toronto and a law degree from Osgoode Hall at York University. He taught at Lakehead University and the University of Toronto at Mississauga. Dr. Smrz was a member of the Canadian Opera Company Volunteer Speakers Bureau and made guest lecture appearances around Canada, most notably to the Kingston Opera Guild.
Thomas Lahusen is Professor of Comparative Literature and History and Member of the Centre for European, Russian and Eurasian Studies, University of Toronto.
Peter H. Solomon, Jr., is Professor Emeritus of Political Science, Law, and Criminology and Member of the Centre for European, Russian and Eurasian Studies, University of Toronto.