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To celebrate the centenary of the birth of the great Russian film director, Sergei Eisenstein (1898 - 1948), on 23 January 1998 PotemkinPress have published a biography of this extraordinary man written by Oksana Bulgakowa.
Eisenstein was born in Riga in 1898. His father was a Jew of German origin who had converted to Russian Orthodoxy and who passed himself off as a Baltic baron. His mother was the daughter of wealthy Russian (and traditionally anti-Semitic) merchants from St Petersburg.
Eisenstein's life was full of unforeseen diversions and turns of events. Would he become an architect like his father and go into German exile in 1918? Would he be banished as a Freemason in 1925, or stay in the USA in 1932? Would he be sentenced by a special court in 1939 to be executed, like his friends Isaak Babel and Vsevolod Meyerhold? Or would he ultimately die as a Stalin Prize winner (for "Ivan the Terrible", Part I) of a heart attack caused by the ban on Part II?