Dziga Vertov: Life and Work (Volume 1: 1896–1921)

Dziga Vertov: Life and Work (Volume 1: 1896–1921)


John MacKay

Series: Film and Media Studies
ISBN: 9781618117342 (hardcover)
Pages: approx. 450 pp.; 35 illus.; 2 charts
Publication Date: May 2018


Dziga Vertov (1896–1954) has become one of the most discussed of all twentieth-century filmmakers, despite a dearth of primary research on his life and work. The most extensive study of the life and corpus of any Russian or Soviet filmmaker, this book reinserts Vertov's films into the complex epoch in which he worked, the theoretical debates in which he participated, and the reception his writings and films have generated. 

John MacKay is Professor of Film and Media Studies and Professor and Chair of Slavic Languages and Literatures at Yale University. He received a PhD in Comparative Literature from Yale in 1998 and a BA in English from the University of British Columbia in 1987.

Table of Contents

Note on Abbreviations, Transliteration, and Translations
Introduction. How Did It Begin?
Chapter 1. Province of Universality: David Kaufman before the War (1896–1914)
Chapter 2. Social Immortality: David Kaufman at the Psychoneurological Institute (1914–16)
Chapter 3. The Beating Pulse of Living Life: Musical, Futurist, Nonfiction, and Marxist Matrices (1916–18)
Chapter 4. Christ among the Herdsmen: From Refugee to Propagandist (1918–22)
Film Archives Consulted