Caviar and Ashes A Warsaw Generation’s Life and Death in Marxism, 1918-1968 Marci Shore

Publication date:
27 Jan 2009
Yale University Press
480 pages: 235 x 156mm
17 b-w illus.
Sales territories:

"In the elegant capital city of Warsaw, the editor Mieczyslaw Grydzewski would come with his two dachshunds to a café called Ziemianska." Thus begins the history of a generation of Polish literati born at the fin de siècle. They sat in Café Ziemianska and believed that the world moved on what they said there. Caviar and Ashes tells the story of the young avant-gardists of the early 1920s who became the radical Marxists of the late 1920s. They made the choice for Marxism before Stalinism, before socialist realism, before Marxism meant the imposition of Soviet communism in Poland. It ended tragically.
Marci Shore begins with this generation’s coming of age after the First World War and narrates a half-century-long journey through futurist manifestos and proletarian poetry, Stalinist terror and Nazi genocide, a journey from the literary cafés to the cells of prisons and the corridors of power. Using newly available archival materials from Poland and Russia, as well as from Ukraine and Israel, Shore explores what it meant to live Marxism as a European, an East European, and a Jewish intellectual in the twentieth century.

Marci Shore is assistant professor of history at Yale University.

The 2004 Fraenkel Prize in Contemporary History

2006 Association for Women in Slavic Studies Heldt Prize

2006 National Jewish Book Award

2007 Oskar Halecki Polish/East Central European History Award

2008 Samuel and Ronnie Heyman Prize for Outstanding Scholarly Publication

2009 Nagroda Historyczna "Polityki" (Polityka Best Historical Book Award)

Finalist, 2009 Nagroda im. Moczarskiego

Short List, 2007 Wayne S. Vucinich Book Prize

Finalist, 2006 Koret International Jewish Book Awards

Finalist, 2006 Lukas Prize Project Award