By Edmund Wilson
My development of the pdf uploaded by way of chef (despecked b/w, OCR'd, bookmarked, dossier measurement 1/4, his announcemet copied).
Russian Language 3
Gogol: The Demon within the Overgrown backyard 38
Seeing Chekhov undeniable 52
Turgenev and the Life-Giving Drop 68
Sukhovo-Kobylin: "Who Killed the French Woman?" 148
Notes on Tolstoy 161
Notes on Pushkin 185
A Little Museum of Russian Language 197
The unusual Case of Pushkin and Nabokov 209
Svetlana and Her Sisters 238
The glory of the past due Edmund Wilson, as Frank Kermode remarked, has continually been "his skill to spot, no matter if he couldn't thoroughly describe, the master-spirit of an age." different critics are extra analytic or extra systematic, yet none really fit Wilson's clutch of tradition and heritage, of routine and males. In A Window on Russia, which Wilson modestly calls "a handful of disconnected items, written at quite a few instances whilst I occurred to have an interest within the numerous authors," we come upon that infrequent excitement of getting into a residing global the place the useless hand of academia by no means casts its shadow. precise, the essays are asymmetric, the sooner surveys of Gogol and Chekhov, for example, are mild affairs, with out the diversity and poignancy of Wilson's stories of Turgenev and Tolstoy and Pushkin. precise, he's no phrasemaker. He tells us that "Gorky rightly acknowledged that Tolstoy and God have been like bears in a single den," and there's not anything in his personal comments on Tolstoy that equals the pithiness of Gorky's comment. but how memorably Wilson builds up a personality, an period; how attention-grabbing are his fussy information and leisurely summaries; how simply he makes his issues: the bureaucrats who flourish lower than the Soviets as they did less than the Tsars, the peasants who are suffering from one regime to a different, the depression authors who universally depression of Russia but can't undergo to be parted from her. integrated within the present miscellany is the recognized controversy among Nabokov and Wilson over Evgeni Onegin, which first seemed within the long island evaluation, and rather fabulous chapters on Svetlana and Solzhenitsyn which seemed within the New Yorker.
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Additional info for A Window On Russia
Though he may seem to be merely stirring round and round his 42 A WINDOW ON RUSSIA thick and nutritious pages, as if they were the strawberry boiled preserve, or the kasha to be eaten with currants or honey, or the dough full of hazelnuts and poppy seeds for one of the fancier forms of the rich polymorphous Ukrainian bread that his country people are always eating, this invariably results in a finished dish, which contributes to a well-arranged dinner. The Russian genius for movement, which is one of the great features of Russian literature-!
On one occasion, in the middle thirties, when I had just come back from the Soviet Union, I went there to get a copy of F. I. Tyutchev's poems. " They are masters of the evasive answer. " And the lady from whom I was trying to buy a Tyutchev, went on, without offering to sell me one, to point out-what I found to be true-that Tyutchev had written the equivalent of Oscar Wilde's "Each man kills the thing he loves"; though he seems to have been hostile to Wilde himself. uuy HameMy MHJieii! lla -C
It should be noted that an excellent edition ofGogol in six small and cheap volumes has recently been published in the Soviet Union, so that most of his work is now more accessible than it had been for many years, during which the pre-Soviet sets were bringing enormous prices. This new edition is not quite complete, for it omits, along with a number of lesser things, almost the whole of Gogol's last published book, Selected Passages from Correspondence with Friends, in which he expressed his reactionary views, but the volumes are well printed and handy, equipped with adequate notes, and full of curious illustrations from the old editions.
A Window On Russia by Edmund Wilson