Moscow & Leningrad: 1925. First edition. Original pictorial wrappers stapled at spine. Light rubbing to rear wrap. Internally tight and overall clean, spine reinforced, and small paper repairs to the front and rear wrappers, and to the margins of pages 10 and 12 not affecting text. This rare work in Russian has appeared only six times at auction, the most recent being in 2008.
Rand's first published work, which was produced in Russia under the name A. Rosenbaum, "this monograph was part of a series about movie stars, which included booklets on Mary Pickford and Max Linder. Rand's examination of the 'atypical' Negri, with her 'mysterious contemptuous smile'--a trait found in nearly all of Rand's protagonists -- celebrates the actress's screen persona as 'the strong, powerful woman,' the 'proud woman-conqueror...[who is] powerful even in her suffering.' Rand sounds familiar themes in extolling Negri's concentration of 'her whole life...in her artistic endeavors.' As the embodiment of 'power, the eternal, unconquerable power of a woman,' Negri 'portrays the woman victorious.' For the young Rand, the actress seems to have encapsulated a nascent feminist ideal, one that would reappear in Kira Arounova of We the Living and Dagny Taggart of Atlas Shrugged" (Sciabarra). In this sense, Pola Negri was more than Rand's first appearance in print. The book was the space where she located and developed the model for the most influential characters to appear in her later works.
Swann lot 259 (sale 1929). Provenance: From the private collection of Jay T. Snider Very Good + (Item #2752)