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From the early nineteenth century to the collapse of the Soviet Union and beyond, the short story has occupied a central place in Russian literature. This collection includes not only well-known classics but also modern masterpieces, many of them previously censored. There are stories by acknowledged giants – Gogol, Tolstoy, Chekhov and Solzhenitsyn – and by equally great writers such as Platonov who have only recently become known to the English-speaking world. Some stories are tragic, but the volume also includes a great deal of comedy – from Pushkin’s subtle wit to Kharms’s dark absurdism, from Dostoyevsky’s graveyard humour to Teffi’s subtle evocations of human stupidity and Zoshchenko’s satirical vignettes of everyday life in the decade after the 1917 Revolution. This new collection of translations includes works recently rediscovered in Russia. The introduction gives a vivid insight into the history of the Russian short story, while the work of every author is preceded by an individual introduction. This edition also includes notes and a chronology.
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