About the Digital Collection
This collection of 20th-century Russian posters spans almost the entire history of the Soviet Union (1917-1991). It can be divided into three main series, each representing distinct eras in the history of Communist political advertising. The General Political Poster series features works from the earliest days of Soviet power and is especially strong for the late 1920s, a period that coincides with the "cultural revolution" of I. V. Stalin. The Twenty-Second Communist Party Congress series includes electioneering placards from the early 1960s that graphically illustrate N. S. Khrushchev's promise to catch up and overtake the capitalist West. The Perestroika Era series, which rounds out this collection, is an assemblage of posters from the late 1980s that offers a poignant reminder of the promises and perils of the period of "restructuring" (perestroika) and "openness" (glasnost) under M. S. Gorbachev.
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This digital collection comprises selected materials from the following archival collection at David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library:
Russian Posters collection 1919-1989 and undated
Collection #RL.01122 | 4 Linear Feet; 81 Items
The Russian Posters Collection is divided into three series spanning the years 1919 to 1989: 30 posters emphasizing the benefits of communism and the first "Five Year Plan" for workers, the achievements of the USSR under communism, religion as an enemy of the people, and the struggle against and decline of capitalism; 14 placards from the 22nd Congress of the Communist Party of the USSR describing and depicting the strength of the country in industrial development, consumer goods, agricultural production, electrification, and the national welfare; and the collapse of the colonial system of imperialism and the problems facing capitalism; and last, ten posters from the "perestroika" period of the 1980s, most of which were exhibited in Moscow in 1988. In addition, the collection houses nine facsimiles of Russian posters from the 1920s-1930s. The posters have been digitized and are available online.