Alexander Pushkin (1799-1837) is, for Russians, their greatest writer; Eugene Onegin is his greatest work. Yet it remains little known outside Russia. Attempts to render Pushkin's Russian stanzas into verse have tried in vain to imitate the most inimitable features of the original, while masking many of its other glories. This prose version, for the first time, gives us a Eugene Onegin that is easy and enjoyable to read. Where previous versions lost the novel in the verse, Roger Clarke has discarded the verse to bring us the novel. And more than the novel: what shines through here are not only Puskin's touching story and subtle characterisation, but his incisive pictures of contemporary Russian life and landscapes, his social and literary comment, his humour, and indeed the essential poetry of the work. The addition of four captivating verse-tales from Pushkin's early maturity makes this book a must for anybody interested in Russian or European literature.
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James E. Falen is Professor of Russian, University of Tennessee at Knoxville. His previous publications include Isaak Babel: Russian Master of the Short Story.Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:
Chapter One 1) 'My uncle's acted very wisely, to seek his bed when he's so sick; his family's reacted nicely and he's most happy with his trick. He's set the world a good example, which others would do well to sample, but it's a bore, when night and day the sick man forces you to stay! To keep him sweet, as if he's dying, give him his daily medicine and make quite sure that it goes in, adjust the pillows while one's sighing: 'Don't even think of getting well, The devil take you, go to hell!' 2) Thus thought a ne'erdowell and dandy whom Zeus had made his uncle's heir: to him the money'd come in handy, so coach and horses rushed him there. For those who love my comic thriller of Ruslan and his dear Ludmilla, I'll introduce without ado, the hero of my tale to you: Onegin, whom I've long befriended, had grown up on the Neva's shore, perhaps like you, dear reader, for St. Petersburg is truly splendid where once we wandered back and forth, though now I really hate the North. Chapter Five 1) That year the warm and autumn weather appeared to wish that it could stay, and nature dawdled, altogether reluctant ever to make way for winter; suddenly some flurries of shining snow arrived and hurried to cover fences, houses, lanes, drew patterns on the window panes. Tatiana wakes and sees the whitened and gleaming countryside; the trees in wintry silver, magpies please her eyes, the hills around now lighten as swirling snowflakes gently float, enclosing all in winter's coat. 2) So now it's wintertime! The peasant sets off, rejoicing in the day, his horse, in snow both crisp and pleasant, is snorting as it drags the sleigh, while fleet kibitkas glide for hours and throw up fluffy, snowy showers; the coachman drives with proud panache in sheepskin coat and crimson sash; a country urchin blithely scampers along and pulls his little sled on which a mongrel sits, instead of him; he laughs at frozen fingers, inflamed in all the biting cold, not caring as his mother scolds.
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Book Description Distribooks, 1999. Mass Market Paperback. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # M2877142566