?? ????? - ???????? - ?????? ????? (The State Publishing House - Yes to Books, No to Vodka)
Moscow: State Publishing House Gosizdat, . Lithographed poster in four colors; 68cm x 53cm (ca 26-1/2" x 21"). Printed on thin, uncoated stock. Faint wear and soil; original fold lines visible, still a bright, nicely preserved example. Grade B+/A-. No restorations; not backed. The somewhat impressionistic image is of a peasant receiving inspiration through literacy training while a discarded, broken bottle of vodka occupies the foreground. The great Soviet literacy campaign ("Likbez") of the Twenties and Thirties brought the national literacy rate from around 40 percent to near 100 percent and was one of the major achievements of the early Bolshevik government. Peasants were taught to read through mandatory attendance at regional reading rooms, where designated readers would recite from state-approved texts (likely the scene being depicted in the present work). Likbez thus served simultaneously to educate the peasantry and as the primary outlet for state propaganda in the rural districts.