Film Tourism: From Iron Curtain to Silver Screen

Anne E. Gorsuch

in All this is your World

Published in print August 2011 | ISBN: 9780199609949
Published online January 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191731853 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Studies in Modern European History

Film Tourism: From Iron Curtain to Silver Screen

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  • Modern History (1700 to 1945)


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This chapter explores the distribution of the travel experience at home via film. Easier to monitor than real tourism, yet visually captivating, films about travel provided a mechanism by which Soviets at home could safely visit and learn from a domesticated elsewhere without leaving the USSR. Russkii suvenir [Russian Souvenir] celebrates a more positive and more peaceful relationship between the Soviet Union and the United States. In I walk around Moscow [Ia shagaiu po Moskve], Moscow is portrayed as a consumer haven, as sophisticated and romantic, and as a tourist destination. These ideals are international, largely imported from postwar, Western consumer models. In Moi mladshii brat [My Younger Brother], the beauties of medieval European architecture help make Estonia a socialist “West” for those from the rest of the Union. The final two films explored in this chapter warn Soviet citizens not to take their enthusiasms for the West too far.

Keywords: Tourism; Khrushchev; film; consumption; West; internationalism; cosmopolitanism; black marketeers; modernity; anxiety

Chapter.  8567 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Modern History (1700 to 1945)

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