Item #1923 [EARLY SOVIET BOOK DESIGN] Liudi kak bogi [i.e. Men Like Gods]. H. Wells.
[EARLY SOVIET BOOK DESIGN] Liudi kak bogi [i.e. Men Like Gods]
[EARLY SOVIET BOOK DESIGN] Liudi kak bogi [i.e. Men Like Gods]
[EARLY SOVIET BOOK DESIGN] Liudi kak bogi [i.e. Men Like Gods]
[EARLY SOVIET BOOK DESIGN] Liudi kak bogi [i.e. Men Like Gods]
[EARLY SOVIET BOOK DESIGN] Liudi kak bogi [i.e. Men Like Gods]
[EARLY SOVIET BOOK DESIGN] Liudi kak bogi [i.e. Men Like Gods]

[EARLY SOVIET BOOK DESIGN] Liudi kak bogi [i.e. Men Like Gods]

Moscow; Leningrad: Zemlia i fabrika, 1930. Item #1923

312 pp., 8 iils. 21x15 cm. In contemporary owner's binding; original illustrated wrappers preserved. Some foxing and soiling occasionally, spine slightly rubbed, signatures on t.p. and front endpaper, otherwise very good.

First thus edition. One of 5000 copies.

The earliest Russian translation of the utopian novel ‘Men Like Gods’ (1923) was undertaken by S. Adrianov and was published the same year with the title “Liudi-bogi” [Men-Gods]. This lifetime edition is particularly interesting for the design. It was printed as the 12th volume within 15-volume Complete Fantastic Works by Herbert Wells at the Zemlia i Fabrika publishing house. The photomontage cover design was created by Jewish artist Leonid Feinberg (1896-1980). He is
known for his poetic and artistic activities. Among his works in book design, the 1930 cover designs for ‘Zemlia i fabrika’ are most recognizable. In this
cover, he masterfully displayed two oppositions at one time. He attractively used a row of similar mannequin heads contrasting with English gentlemen in suits. For another comparison, the designer divided the space by colors in order to separate men from gods depicted as Greek statues. As a final accord, the back cover shows a photo of a car flying between these two spaces.

The adaptation was made by L. [Alla] Karnaukhova (1877-1958). She was born into a family of a well-known Kyiv publisher Krainov. Initially, she worked in Kyiv magazines, then she moved to Petrograd in the early 1920s. Since 1924, she began to translate foreign works and collaborate with “Vestnik inostrannoi literatury” [Magazine of Foreign Literature]. Initially, Karnaukhova printed her translation of ‘Men Like Gods’ in 1925 while working in the Mysl publishing house.
In the early USSR, Wells’ utopian ideas were close to Soviet propagators. The creation of a socialist society within which “people no longer need clothes” appeared in early Soviet publications multiple times. Obvious denunciation of the Soviet-Marxist system didn’t prevent the Russian publication of this work on collapse of the
capitalist world.

According to the foreword by A. Starchakov, “In his novel, Wells shows the social dreams of the petty bourgeoisie, timid and half-hearted, equally rejecting both capitalism and revolution. Our reader, paying tribute to the author’s enormous ingenuity, will easily expose that amount of philistinism that lives in Wells’ rose-colored dreams”.

Worldcat doesn’t track this edition.

Price: $550.00

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