Village Evenings Near Dikanka and Mirgorod by Nikolai Vasilievich Gogol
Gogol's unique and fantastic world is revealed in all its variety in these, his first two collections of stories. Gogol ranges from the dark Gothic of A Terrible Revenge to the folkloric levity of Christmas Eve and from the pitilessly ironic Story of How Ivan Ivanovich Quarrelled with Ivan Nikiforovich to the brooding nationalism of Taras Bulba . An entire panoply of human - and not so human - types populates their pages: swashbuckling Cossacks, market hustlers, lissom water-nymphs, beguiling witches, feckless devils, philandering village headmen, and amorous clerics. Here too are to be found some of Russian literature's most celebrated poetic passage, such as the encomium to the Ukrainian night in A Night in May , and these have inspired the Sorochintsy Fair , Janacek's orchestral rhapsody Taras Bulba , the illustrations of Chagall, or Yershov's eerie and haunting film, Viy , to name a few. Hailed univerally as Russia's finest comic writer, and by many as its greatest creator of prose, Gogol is either loved or hated by his Russian readers. This translation captures fully the spirit and vigour of his early stories. This book is intended for students of Russian literature (from A level up), comparative literature, European romanticism, the short story, 19th century literature, general readers.