February 27, 2020

#TBT Russian Literature is Born



#TBT Russian Literature is Born
Eugene Onegin as imagined by Alexander Pushkin, 1830.

195 years ago today Russian literature was born. More specifically, Alexander Pushkin's Yevgeny Onegin began to be published. The epic novel in verse was published over the next seven years, and was not published in a single, full publication until 1833.

Comprised of 5,446 lines of iambic tetrameter, in an unusual form that has come to be known as the "Onegin stanza" or the "Pushkin sonnet," the poem has a very natural tone and diction the demonstrated Pushkin's humor and virtuosity, cemented his place as the greatest Russian poet who ever was or ever will be.

As a cornerstone of Russian literature, the poem has been translated into multiple languages and inspired countless derivative works, films, music and ballet.

My Pushkin, Our Pushkin
  • June 01, 1999

My Pushkin, Our Pushkin

There are many Pushkins. But only Russia can truly claim him as its own. For Pushkin made Russian literature what it is. Included in this piece are amazing photos from films based on Pushkin's works, plus excerpts, in Russian and English, from his most famous works.
Pushkin's Death
  • January 01, 2007

Pushkin's Death

Looking at the place of Pushkin in the Russian psyche, on the anniversary of the poet's tragic death.
The Poet's Fate
  • June 01, 1999

The Poet's Fate

Alexander Pushkin's work was inextricably bound up with his personal life and with his tragic death, foretold in his masterpiece, Yevgeny Onegin.
Pushkin's Estates
  • June 01, 1999

Pushkin's Estates

Pskov region's three estates associated with Pushkin were more than a quiet place for the poet to create; they also offered material for his muse.
The Translator
  • November 01, 2017

The Translator

Galina Sergeyevna Usova is a poet and translator of English prose and poetry. For the last few years, she has been standing outside St. Petersburg’s Polytechnic Institute metro station selling her books.
Pushkin is a Meme
  • May 01, 2019

Pushkin is a Meme

In which an artist tries to get out of a job illustrating a brochure and ends up getting sucked into a Pushkin meme vortex.
Pushkin Was Here (Perhaps)
  • May 01, 2019

Pushkin Was Here (Perhaps)

“Pushkin is our everything,” Russians like to say. And sometimes it seems like he was everywhere.
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22 Russian Crosswords

22 Russian Crosswords

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The Spine of Russia

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The Little Golden Calf

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93 Untranslatable Russian Words

Every language has concepts, ideas, words and idioms that are nearly impossible to translate into another language. This book looks at nearly 100 such Russian words and offers paths to their understanding and translation by way of examples from literature and everyday life. Difficult to translate words and concepts are introduced with dictionary definitions, then elucidated with citations from literature, speech and prose, helping the student of Russian comprehend the word/concept in context.
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The Best of Russian Life

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The murder of a poet is always more than a murder. When a famous writer is brutally stabbed on the campus of Moscow’s Lumumba University, the son of a recently deposed African president confesses, and the case assumes political implications that no one wants any part of.
Life Stories: Original Fiction By Russian Authors

Life Stories: Original Fiction By Russian Authors

The Life Stories collection is a nice introduction to contemporary Russian fiction: many of the 19 authors featured here have won major Russian literary prizes and/or become bestsellers. These are life-affirming stories of love, family, hope, rebirth, mystery and imagination, masterfully translated by some of the best Russian-English translators working today. The selections reassert the power of Russian literature to affect readers of all cultures in profound and lasting ways. Best of all, 100% of the profits from the sale of this book are going to benefit Russian hospice—not-for-profit care for fellow human beings who are nearing the end of their own life stories.

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