Natasha’s Dance: A Cultural History of Russia

A history of Russia’s mighty culture. It covers the lives of those who have shaped its culture, and the enduring spirit of a people.


“Scintillating. . .an exceptional history of Russian culture and a joy to read.” –“San Francisco Chronicle” “Stunning and ambitious. . .Figes captures nothing less than Russians’ complex and protean notions regarding their national identity.” –“The Atlantic Monthly” “Staggering. . .A vivid, entertaining, and enlightening account of what it has meant to be culturally a Russian over the last three centuries.” –“Los Angeles Times” “[A] masterly work.” –“New York Review of Books” “A big, bold, interpretative cultural history.” –“Foreign Affairs”

About the Author

Orlando Figes is a professor at Birkbeck College, University of London, and former University Lecturer in History at Cambridge. Born in London in 1959, he graduated with a double-starred first in History from Gonville and Caius College, Cambridge, in 1982. His first book, Peasant Russia, Civil War, was described by one reviewer as ‘one of the most important books ever published on the Russian Revolution’.His website can be found at

Orlando Figes is Professor of History at Birkbeck College, University of London. He was born in 1959 and studied History at Cambridge. Before moving to Birkbeck he was a University Lecturer in History and Fellow of Trinity College, Cambridge. He is the author of Peasant Russia, Civil War, A People’s Tragedy (which in 1997 was the winner of the Wolfson History Prize, the WH Smith Literary Award, the Longman / History Today Book of the Year Award, the NCR Book Award and the Los Angeles Times Book Prize), Natasha’s Dance (which was shortlisted for the 2003 Samuel Johnson prize) and The Whisperers (2007).


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