Cover Osteuropa 4/2009

In Osteuropa 4/2009

Getting Oriented in Difficult Terrain
Dorothea Redepenning’s History of Russian and Soviet Music

David Fanning

Deutsche Fassung


With her book Geschichte der russischen und der sowjetischen Musik [A history of Russian and Soviet music], Dorothea Redepenning has submitted a fundamental overview of the musical repertoire in all its depth and width. Displaying great knowledge, she illuminates the cultural background and refrains from making the kind of ideological judgements that have long characterised the treatment of Soviet music. The work is obligatory reading for all academics, musicians, and music lovers who are active in the field. Redepenning deserves great respect. Nonetheless, there are still a few problematic pages in this new book. These concern methods, the attempt to place Soviet music history in a European context, and the intent to do justice to all genres in equal measure. These problems make all too clear the limits inherent in such an ambitious undertaking.

(Osteuropa 4/2009, pp. 31–42)