Category Archives: Literature

For Want of Those Who Would Care

“A poet’s real biography is the biography of his inner self, the history of his spiritual life, inseparable from the life and history of his people (…) The sense of civic duty in poetry is nothing abstract, nor dependent on … Continue reading

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Ivan Turgenev and His Gentry

At the beginning of the golden age of Russian literature, when Russia was emerging from poetry – as all developed literary societies must – and turning to glorious prose, there was Ivan Turgenev. Born into lower nobility, impoverished but still … Continue reading

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The Prose of the Mountains

The stories of the Caucuses reverberate with the ancient lands over which people have fought and suffered and died for millenniums. They are tales infused with the natural beauty of the indomitable gorges and ravines illuminated by the radiance of … Continue reading

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Fathers and Sons – A Review

Fathers and Sons is a novel about Russia, above all. A Russian empire still firmly under Tzarist control before the wars against the Ottomans and the Germans undermined and eventually ended that ancient dynasty. But its also about a Russia … Continue reading

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“Ordeal: The Sisters” – Book One

“I stood here in the crowd a short time ago, and listened,” said Roshchin through his teeth. “Fire and brimstone descends from this balcony and the crowd mops it up. I don’t know any longer who are the strangers in … Continue reading

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To Protect Us From Who We Are Becoming

In youth we rebel. We look around at what we instinctively know as good, and we sneer at it – for it is not exciting; it does not speak to us of danger or achievement, mountains conquered or sins at … Continue reading

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The October Storm and After

There is something nostalgic and haunting about soviet literature. I often wonder why that is…? How did writers participating in a project as wicked as that one harness the written word to such a degree as to be able to … Continue reading

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