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Midnight Verses Historical Context

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Historical Context

Stalinist Repression

Akhmatova wrote "Midnight Verses" during a "thaw" in the Soviet Union's stance toward its country's artists. For much of her adult life, she had been unable to write poetry, and had stood by watching friends and relatives jailed and executed because of their political views.

When Akhmatova began publishing in 1912, Russia was a relatively open society with a severely unbalanced economic system, with severe wealth for a few and economic suffering for most. The Russian Revolution of 1917 transferred the country's power to a communist system aimed at economic equality. In 1921, Russia became part of the newly-formed Union of Soviet Socialist Republics.

The Soviet Union ruled its citizens with complete authority over all social and cultural activities. A secret police force was established in the early 1920s to find any citizens who opposed the gov- ernment and have them arrested. Artists whose work was not approved as...

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This section contains 595 words
(approx. 2 pages at 300 words per page)
Purchase our Midnight Verses Study Guide
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Midnight Verses from BookRags and Gale's For Students Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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