During this semester, we will continue our examination of the history of Russia. We will use literature, art and music to elucidate the main themes of Russian development from 1890 through the Stalinist Era. We will begin with Russia’s rapid modernization in the 1890s, move on to the political and cultural ferment of the early 20th century, and on to the revolutions of 1917 which culminated with the formation of the Soviet Union and the Stalinist dictatorship. We will discover how the vibrant modernist experimentation of the early twentieth century emerged from the Orthodox culture, how the revolution was depicted in art and literature, how the heroic depictions of Socialist Realism reflected and shaped the early Soviet experiment, and how the revolution devolved into the Stalinist totalitarian system. For historical background, we will use Orlando Figes’ Revolutionary Russia 1891-1991: A History (Metropolitan Books, 2014), and every third week we will explore a work of literature written in the period we are studying. The readings will include Anton Chekov’s The Cherry Orchard, Andrei Bely’s Petersburg, Pasternak’s Doctor Zhivago, and Mikhail Bulgakov’s Master & Margarita. Any edition is acceptable. Join us for this fascinating study group!