Erika Kinetz

Erika Kinetz lives in New York and is currently working on a collection of short stories.

Recent Articles

The Rehabilitations of Shostakovich

O n the chill, wet afternoon of August 14, 1975, the Russian composer Dmitri Shostakovich was buried as a bad military band thumped its way through the Soviet national anthem. He had died a hero. According to his obituary in Pravda , Shostakovich was a "loyal son of the Communist Party" who "devoted his entire life to the development of Soviet music." The New York Times agreed: "[Shostakovich] considered his music an expression of the Russian people, in line with the doctrines espoused by the Central Committee of the U.S.S.R." Indeed, Shostakovich had received the highest artistic honors in the Soviet Union, including two Stalin Prizes and the International Peace Prize. In 1942 Time magazine stuck him on its cover as a symbol of Soviet resistance to German forces. The cosmonaut Yuri Gagarin, the first man to venture into outer space, sang (with what now seems like Orwellian irony) Shostakovich's "The Motherland is Listening" on his historic voyage. The Soviets dedicated a...