This collection of essays thrusts Brodsky--heretofore known more for his poetry and translations--into the forefront of the "Third Wave" of Russian emigre writers. His insights into the works of Dostoyevsky
, as well as non-Russian poets Auden
are brilliant. While the Western popularity of many other Third Wavers has been stunted by their inability to write in English, Brodsky consumed the language to attain a "closer proximity" to poets such as Auden. The book, which won a National Book Critics Circle Award, opens and closes with revealing autobiographical essays.
From Library Journal
Brodsky, a brilliant poet and sensitive translator, is also a stunning essayist. His first volume of essays not only evinces a supple, witty mastery of the English language, but provides deeply illuminating insights into the Russian literary tradition and political climate and modern poetry and poetics, in addition to compelling autobiographical material. The collection is a Baedeker to the world's poetry, as exemplified by essays on Cavafy, Montale, Walcott and lengthy fascinating dissections of individual poems by Tsvetaeva and Auden. Brodsky says that he learned English to find himself "in closer proximity" to Auden, and it is a hallmark of his success that this collection is reminiscent of Auden's own essays and suggests a comparable scope. Highly recommended. Natalie C. Tyler, English Dept., Ohio State Univ., Columbus
Copyright 1986 Reed Business Information, Inc.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.