Reading Russian Fortunes: Print Culture, Gender and Divination in Russia from 1765

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Overview

Reading Russian fortunes examines the huge popularity and cultural impact of fortune-telling among urban and literate Russians from the eighteenth century to the present. Based partly on study of the numerous editions of little fortune-telling books, especially those devoted to dream interpretation, it documents and analyses the social history of fortune-telling in terms of class and gender, at the same time considering the function of both amateur and professional fortune-telling in a literate modernizing society.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Fortune-telling and divination have a prominent place in the popular imagination nearly everywhere in the world, and Faith Wigzell has produced a captivating and sophisticated study of this subject in Russia." Slavic Review

"...Wigzell provides us with an extensively researched and easily readable work that illuminates an important area in the lives of eighteenth- and nineteenth- century Russians." Russian Review

"...there is a great deal of intersting information in this book and we can hope that Wigzell will expand her explorations in this level of culture." Speculum: A Journal of Medieval Studies

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Product Details

Table of Contents

List of illustrations
Acknowledgements
Introduction 1
1 Dreambooks and other fortune-telling guides 11
2 Divination in Russian traditional culture 46
3 Readers and detractors 65
4 Printers and publishers 88
5 Women, men and domestic fortune-telling 109
6 Fortune-tellers and their clientele 127
7 Sages and prophets 145
8 Disappearance and revival 165
Conclusion 184
Notes 192
Select bibliography 225
Index 245
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