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High Society Dinners
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Table of Contents

Introduction by Darra Goldstein. Foreword. 'From Kitchen to Drawing Room', a cultural analysis of nineteenth-century dining and dining ritual by Yuri Lotman and Elena Pogosjan. 'Chez Peter Pavlovich Durnovo': a set of menus (complete with annotations for the dishes, shopping lists, and expense accounts) and guest lists from the Durnovo family archives interspersed with family correspondence, family diaries, calendars of cultural events.

About the Author

Yuri Lotman (1922-1993) was a prominent Russian formalist critic, semiotician, and culturologist and a member of the Estonian Academy of Sciences. The founder of structural semiotics in culturology, he is considered the first Soviet structuralist based on his book On the Delimitation of Linguistic and Philological Concepts of Structure (1963). He began his teaching career in 1954 at Tartu University, where he founded the Tartu-Moscow Semiotic School, whose members collectively established a theoretical framework for the semiotics of culture. The number of his printed works exceeds 800 titles and the archive of his letters, which includes his correspondence with a number of Russian intellectuals, is immense. Jelena Pogosjan is a professor of Russian language, literature and culture in the Department of Modern Languages and Cultural Studies at the University of Alberta. Her areas of specialization are the official culture of the Russian Empire in the eighteenth century; the history of the Russian Imperial calendar; M. Lomonosov; and themes and poetics of the Russian ode. She has previously held academic positions in the Department of Russian and Slavic Philology, Tartu University, Estonia, 1987-2002; and the Institute of World Cultures, Moscow State University, 1993-2000. Marian Schwartz is a prize-winning translator of Russian fiction, history, biography, criticism, and fine art. She is the principal English translator of the works of Nina Berberova and translated the New York Times bestseller The Last Tsar, by Edvard Radzinsky, as well as The Poet's Journey: Conversations with Joseph Brodsky, by Solomon Volkov. Her most recent book translations are Olga Slavnikova's novel 2017 (Overlook Press) and two Russian classics: Mikhail Bulgakov's White Guard (Yale University Press), which won the 2009 AATSEEL Award for Best Translation into English, and Ivan Goncharov's Oblomov (Seven Stories Press), both of which have been published in paperback by Yale University Press. Schwartz is the recipient of two translation fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and is a past president of the American Literary Translators Association. Darra Goldstein is Francis Christopher Oakley Third Century Professor of Russian at Williams College and Founding Editor of Gastronomica: The Journal of Food and Culture. Since earning her Ph.D. in Slavic Languages and Literatures from Stanford University, she has published numerous books and articles on Russian literature, culture, art, and cuisine, and has organized several exhibitions, including Graphic Design in the Mechanical Age and Feeding Desire: Design and the Tools of the Table, 1500-2005, at the Cooper-Hewitt, National Design Museum, with catalogues published, respectively, by Yale University Press and Assouline. She is also the author of four cookbooks: A Taste of Russia (nominated for a Tastemaker Award), The Georgian Feast (winner of the 1994 IACP Julia Child Award for Cookbook of the Year), The Winter Vegetarian, and Baking Boot Camp at the CIA (IACP award finalist). She has consulted for the Council of Europe as part of an international group exploring ways in which food can be used to promote tolerance and diversity, and under her editorship the volume Culinary Cultures of Europe: Identity, Diversity and Dialogue was published in 2005 to commemorate the fiftieth anniversary of the signing of the European Cultural Convention. Goldstein has also consulted for the Russian Tea Room and Firebird restaurants in New York and served on the Board of Directors of the International Association of Culinary Professionals. She is currently Food Editor of Russian Life magazine and the series editor of California Studies in Food and Culture (University of California Press), a book series that seeks to broaden the audience for serious scholarship in food studies and to celebrate food as a means of understanding the world.

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