Mikhail Il’ich Romm
(4085) Romm Mikhaïl Il’ich (1901-1971). “Slovo predostavliaetsia M.I.Rommu” (“The Floor is Given to Romm”).
Original typescript, 2nd copy. 4 pages. 30,8cm x 20,8cm. Samizdat dated 1962.
Romm was a director for film and theatre, scriptwriter and teacher. A laureate of several Stalin prizes and bestowed the title of Peoples Artist of the USSR in 1950 he was a member of the Communist party from 1939 until his death.
(Biographical Dictionary of Dissidents in The Soviet Union./ Martinus Nijhoff /p.475)
On November 27 1962 Romm participated in the conference “Traditions and the Innovative Spirit in the Art of Socialist Realism”. in his speech Romm evoked the memory of the campaign against cosmopolitans which highlighted the rampant anti-semitism of the time. In his opinion not only could the primary culprits were easily identifiable as being Grivachev and Sofronov but the main thrust of the campaign was simply a through beating of rival writers. Romm also accused V. Kochetov (editor of the review “Oktiabr”) and A. Sofronov of antisemitism and of scheming against everything which was new and brilliant in cinema.
In Barbakadze’s Anthology of Samizdat this text is reproduced under the simplified title of “Vystuplenie” (“Speech”) which goes some way to illustrate the anterior position of our text in relation to later samizdat versions and the fact that this is a precise copy of the actual speech rather than a later reworked textual version.