Roll Over, Tchaikovsky!
Russian Popular Music and Post-Soviet Homosexuality
Awards and Recognition:
• Marcia Herndon Prize, Gender and Sexualities Section of the Society for Ethnomusicology (SEM), 2015
• Special Mention, IASPM Book Prize, International Association for the Study of Popular Music, 2015
Sex, the body, and pop music in modern urban Russia
Centered on the musical experiences of homosexual men in St. Petersburg and Moscow, this ground-breaking study examines how post-Soviet popular music both informs and plays off of a corporeal understanding of Russian male homosexuality.
Drawing upon ethnography, musical analysis, and phenomenological theory, Stephen Amico argues that the homosexual body in post-Soviet Russia rejects both the Soviet aversion to physical pleasure and the Western politicization of sexuality. Instead, both listeners and performers turn to popular music for a framework within which they can experience an embodied sense of sexuality, the self, and intersubjectivity.
Roll Over, Tchaikovsky! Russian Popular Music and Post-Soviet Homosexuality begins with an expert technical analysis of Russian rock, pop, and estrada music, dovetailing into an illuminating discussion of homosexual men's physical reception and uses of music. The book outlines how Russian homophobia and gender systems interact (often inconsistently) with popular music. Performers sustain a delicate literal and physical dance with cultural expectations. Amico argues that performers use song lyrics, physical movements, images of women, drag, and sexualized male bodies as tools and tropes to implicitly or explicitly express sexual orientation through performance. Finally, he uncovers how these performances help homosexual Russian men to create their own social spaces and selves, in meaningful relation to others with whom they share a "nontraditional orientation."
"Adroitly fusing ideas derived from queer theory with an interest in the recent affective turn in the humanities, Roll Over, Tchaikovsky! Russian Popular Music and Post-Soviet Homosexuality will be of interest not just to specialists in Russian popular culture but to scholars of national identify and contemporary society too."--Slavic Review
"This is important work, bringing the scholarship of sexuality into a fascinating new setting. The project required a rare combination of skills--musical understanding, rich knowledge of present-day Russian culture, and the talents of an ethnographer who can be accepted as a confidant by Russian gay men. The research will never be duplicated, and this book is of great value to scholars of popular music, popular culture generally, and sexuality."--Fred Everett Maus, Department of Music, University of Virginia
"I thoroughly enjoyed Roll Over, Tchaikovsky! Amico has produced an intensive, well-argued study that should be read by anyone with an interest in today's Russia."--Eliot Borenstein, author of Overkill: Sex and Violence in Contemporary Russian Popular Culture
To order online:
To order by phone:
(800) 621-2736 (USA/Canada)
(773) 702-7000 (International)
Lou Harrison, Musical Wayfarer
Leta E. Miller and Fredric Lieberman
The wrong place for the Right people
Barney Josephson with Terry Trilling-Josephson
Big Band Jazz Arranging in the Swing Era
Edited by Karen Ahlquist
America's Bluegrass Ambassador to the World
Bill C. Malone
Race, Sexual Politics, and Women's Music
Eileen M. Hayes
Edited by Horace Maxile, Jr.
The Culture of Southern Gospel Music
Edited by Eve Harwood
A Travelers Guide
Robert L. Marshall and Traute M. Marshall
Views from the South
Edited by Javier F. León and Helena Simonett
Edited by Don M. Randel, Matthew Shaftel, and Susan Forscher Weiss
Edited by Neil Lerner
Edited by Gillian B. Anderson & Ronald H. Sadoff
Edited by Sophie Fuller and Lloyd Whitesell