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The Soviet Banya and the Mass Production of Hygiene

Author(s): Tijana Vujosevic

Journal: Architectural Histories
ISSN 2050-5833

Volume: 1;
Issue: 1;
Start page: Art. 26;
Date: 2013;
Original page

Around 1930, during the era of the First Five-Year Plan, the Russian urban bathhouse, or 'banya', was collectivized and placed under state care. How did changes in the architecture of the model 'banyas' of Moscow and Leningrad articulate the changing role of the 'banya' as a site of pleasure, cure, and socialization? How do the aesthetics, ethics, and choreography of bathing in this period illustrate the relationship between the state and the urban proletariat as mediated by modern technology? How did they reflect the vision of the Communist society as a mechanized universe?
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