[TEMPERANCE MOVEMENT ALL OVER THE USSR]

[TEMPERANCE MOVEMENT ALL OVER THE USSR]

Item #4482



1) Ustav Obshchestva bor’by s alkogolizmom [i.e. Charter of the Society for the Fight against Alcoholism]. Moscow: Gos. Meditsinskoe izdatel’stvo, 1928. 16 pp. 14x9 cm. One of 2000 copies.

2) Ustav Obshchestva bor’by s alkogolizmom Petrogradskogo raiona [i.e. Charter of the Society for the Fight against Alcoholism in Petrogradsk District]. Leningrad, 1928. 16 pp. 13x9 cm. One of 1000 copies.

3) Ustav Obshchestva bor’by s alkogolizmom [i.e. Charter of the Society for the Fight against Alcoholism]. Rostov-on-Don, 1928. 16 pp. 13x8,5 cm. One of 2000 copies.

4) Ustav Obshchestva bor’by s alkogolizmom [i.e. Charter of the Society for the Fight against Alcoholism]. Ul’anovsk, 1928. 14 pp. 11x9 cm. One of 500 copies.

5) Ustav Obshchestva bor’by s alkogolizmom Irkutskogo okruga [i.e. Charter of the Society for the Fight against Alcoholism in Irkutsk Region]. Irkutsk: Vlast’ truda, 1928. 16 pp. 13x9 cm. One of 1000 copies.

6) Ustav Vserossiiskogo obshchestva bor’by s alkogolizmom [i.e. Charter of the All-Russian Society for the Fight against Alcoholism]. Moscow, [1929]. 16 pp. 10,5x7,5 cm.

7) Ustav Obshchestva bor’by s alkogolizmom : S prilozheniem instruktsii dlia iacheek [i.e. Charter of the Society for the Fight against Alcoholism: Instruction for Branches Supplemented]. Moscow: Gos. Meditsinskoe izdatel’stvo, 1929. 30 pp. 12,5x9 cm. Second edition.

8) Ustav Obshchestva bor’by s alkogolizmom : S prilozheniem instruktsii dlia iacheek [i.e. Charter of the Society for the Fight against Alcoholism: Instruction for Branches Supplemented]. Novosibirsk, 1929. 32 pp. 11x8,5 cm. One of 3000 copies.

9) Ustav Obshchestva bor’by s alkogolizmom : S prilozheniem instruktsii dlia iacheek [i.e. Charter of the Society for the Fight against Alcoholism : Instruction for Branches Supplemented]. Yaroslavl, 1930. 32 pp. 10,5x7,5 cm. Second edition. One of 1000 copies.

In original printed wrappers. Fine, stamps of a private library and its numbers.
These very rare brochures are related to Soviet anti-alcohol propaganda and sanitary education in the 1920s.
Prohibition started during World War I but continued by 1919 law banning the production and sale of most alcoholic beverages. It didn’t last long and was gradually canceled during the formation of the NEP. A side effect of the harsh anti-alcohol campaign has been the development of a black market for moonshine which rised into social evil in the Civil war. Peasant farms were almost destroyed by the war and state food tax, so the scale of cheap moonshine production and the number of products spent on it were coming close to a catastrophe. Young people moved to cities and spread the consumption of moonshine to new territories. At first, it was the only spirit to be a target for propaganda attacks in the early years of the Soviet state. During the Civil war it was nearly as significant as the fight against counter-revolutionaries that is why Glavpolitprosvet focused on this direction as well. In particular, V. Mayakovsky’s agit-poem ‘Kick Moonshine Out’ was published in 1923. In the early 1920s, this struggle wasn’t yet systematic and planned but the situation changed in 1925.
In this year, the government monopoly of wine and vodka production and permission to trade alcohol drinks were adopted “as temporary measure” and an attempt to decrease moonshine addiction. Large amounts of money were needed for the rapid industrialization of the country and the mobilization of internal economic resources through this trade became one of the solutions. In reality, it badly unbalanced Soviet alcohol policy and reduced the population’s health level. The situation threatened to undermine plans to industrialize the country. A wide campaign against alcoholism was organized in the late 1920s. It included the establishment of special medical institutions and sanitary education of the Soviet people to prevent substance abuse. The anti-alcoholism campaign became a part of socialist ideology, thus political organizations were involved as well.
All state publishing houses started to issue the relevant literature. In 1928, the Society for the Fight against Alcoholism was formed in Moscow with its distributor to supply the provincial branches with temperance books, brochures, magazines and posters. Often provincial branches acted as centers on substance abuse working to minimize the harm associated with the use of alcohol, but also tobacco and other drugs.
Central and provincial periodicals regularly included articles on this topic but the magazine ‘Abstinence and Culture’ (1928-1932) played a special role. It covered measures to reduce alcohol abuse, published medical articles, caricatures and photographs, facts and figures. The most widespread and understandable medium for the masses became posters; eminent artists and poets participated in the creation. Along with print media, cinema and theater were used, exhibitions were held. The propaganda didn’t just prohibit alcohol consumption, it offered an alternative - a healthy lifestyle - and thus the importance of sports events within factories and institutions hugely increased.
Nine brochures have similar contents but differ from each other by slogans, advertisements of the magazine ‘Abstinence and Culture’. In 1930, a win-win lottery ‘Book instead of Vodka’ was announced. Any winner received books for the amount of the indicated prize in Gosizdat bookstores. Its advertisement was placed on the back cover of the Moscow imprint in 1929. Central editions also include lists of books printed on the topic of temperance.

Not found in Worldcat.

Price: $1,200.00

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