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Eugene Onegin: A Novel in Verse (Oxford World's Classics) Paperback – March 25, 2009

ISBN-13: 978-0199538645 ISBN-10: 0199538646 Edition: Reissue

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Product Details

  • Series: Oxford World's Classics
  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; Reissue edition (March 25, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0199538646
  • ISBN-13: 978-0199538645
  • Product Dimensions: 7.6 x 0.7 x 5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (49 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #63,050 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

or Yevgeny Onegin yiv-hgye-nye-le-hnye-gyin Verse novel by Aleksandr Pushkin, written from 1823 to 1831 and published in Russian in 1833 as Yevgeny Onegin. Eugene Onegin is a disillusioned aristocrat who moves from St. Petersburg to a rural estate. Through Lensky, a neighboring landowner and poet, Onegin meets Tatyana, a romantic, unpolished young woman who falls in love with him at first sight. Onegin rejects her love. He needlessly allows himself to be drawn into a duel with Lensky, whom he kills. Tatyana enters a loveless marriage of convenience that is, to her, a binding commitment. Years later, Onegin and Tatyana meet again. She is now a member of high Russian society. Onegin falls in love with Tatyana but she rejects him, admitting that although she still loves him, she must remain faithful to her marriage vows. Peter Ilich Tchaikovsky's opera Eugene Onegin, written in 1877-78, is one of the best-known Russian operas. -- The Merriam-Webster Encyclopedia of Literature --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Language Notes

Text: English, Russian (translation) --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Customer Reviews

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Therefore, he gives up reading just like the habits of his past life.
Tolstoy
One thing for sure is that James Falen did a perfect job on the translation of EUGENE ONEGIN.
John T C
Eugene Onegin is a masterpiece, a precursor to the great 19th century Russian novels.
Radcliffe Camera

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

134 of 135 people found the following review helpful By Jodi VINE VOICE on November 8, 2001
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have read four translations of this novel and James Falen's is my favorite one. He has translated Pushkin's classic in a fun, witty way which doesn't take too much away from the original Russian version (which I have also read). Granted, something is always lost in a translation, but it certainly doesn't take away from the humor and wit of this translation. If you are interested in a literal, as-close-to-the-original-as-possible translation, then I highly suggest Nabokov's translation, which (in my opinion) is somewhat dry and boring, but extremely accurate. It is all a matter of taste...what the reader wants. If you want accuracy, you will have to sacrifice some of the fun. If you want the fun, you will have to sacrifice some of the accuracy. I prefer the fun, therefore I preferred this version of Onegin.
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78 of 80 people found the following review helpful By "mikeu3" on July 8, 2000
Format: Paperback
Eugene Onegin was Pushkin's favorite among all his works, and although it seems to take a back seat to some of the great late-19th century Russian novels among western readers, Russians themselves tend to prize it above all other works of their country's literature. In case you're not familiar with the story, it deals mainly with two of the title character's ill-fated relationships: one with his friend and neighbor Vladimir Lensky, which ends tragically due to a very unnecessary rivalry over Olga Larin; and the other with Olga's sister Tatyana, which never comes to fruition because Eugene initially rejects her, only to fall in love with her later. Interwoven among all this, Pushkin himself periodically appears to invoke his muse or to digress on such seemingly unrelated topics as his penchant for women's feet.
The work can't possibly be praised enough in a single review, and I won't try to do so; suffice it to say that Eugene's provincial boredom, Tatyana's passion, and Vladimir's poetic romanticism are all splendidly drawn, and many of Pushkin's digressions have justly become proverbs in his native land. Presumably much of the reason that the novel doesn't receive quite so much attention in the non-Russian speaking world is that, due to its verse structure (it consists of 14-line stanzas in iambic tetrameter with a consistent ababccddeffegg rhyme scheme), it's very hard to translate while still retaining both the meaning and the delightfully spirited rhythm of the original. Vladimir Nabokov asserted very emphatically back in the 1960s that any faithful translation would have to almost completely sacrifice the original's lyric quality, and Nabokov's translation is notoriously dull, if extremely adherent to Pushkin's exact meaning.
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36 of 36 people found the following review helpful By James Ferguson VINE VOICE on December 6, 2003
Format: Paperback
James Falen has offered his version of the Russian classic, and has captured both the meaning and the verse. The stanzas flow effortlessly in Falen's hands, it may very well be the best translation yet. Of course, Nabokov is not around to cast his judgement on it. He panned every other translation that had been printed and penned his own in prose, so as not to stray too far from original meaning. But, even he said it was no more than a crib, as what Puskin had achieved in Eugene Onegin was a restructuring of the Russian language, giving it a beauty few had thought it possessed.
Orlando Figes similarly noted that Onegin was the first truly Russian lyrical novel. Pushkin had forsaken the standard French and sought to find the words expressive enough to convey the contradictory nature of the Russian soul. The novel in verse ebbs and flows as Pushkin takes you from St. Petersburg to Moscow to the Russian countryside, weaving a charming tale with many fascinating asides. The texture is so rich and the characters so enduring that this lyrical novel has attained mythological status in Russian literature. No understanding of the subject is complete without having read Eugene Onegin.
But, if language is essential to understanding Onegin then any translation will ultimately come up short. However, Falen has shown great respect for the novel and its language, unlike Douglass Hofstadter's juvenile attempt to translate it. Falen offers copious endnotes and a fascinating introduction. He tips his hat to Nabokov and the others who have translated this novel in the past. The language Falen uses is modern, giving Onegin a freshness lacking in other translations.
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22 of 22 people found the following review helpful By FJC on April 26, 2002
Format: Mass Market Paperback
When Russians ask you who your favorite poet is they will often add a "Besides Pushkin, of course." Pushkin has an iconic status in Russia that is maybe unparalleled in the English speaking world. Shakespeare probably comes the closest. Eugene Onegin is a masterpiece and the genius of it's creator is apparent. It is alwasy difficult, however, to read poetry in translation. Others have spoken of the translation difficulties already. As a non-Russian speaker, I won't comment on them except to say that, at some points, the difficulties encountered in translation are obvious and frustrating. Professors have told me, however, that this translation is about as good as they come. Like any other work of genius, Eugen Onegin needs a careful reading. Each layer, and there are many, proves more rewarding then the next. Pushkin is often funny, passionate and has a pretty keen sense of satire. I would advise everybody to read this. Pushkin is doubly important as background to Dostoyevsky and Tolstoy. He began the Russian literary tradition.
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