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A History of Russian Literature: From Its Beginnings to 1900 Paperback – September 15, 1999
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This books is a classic exploration of Russian Literature that has had a great deal of impact on the teaching and understanding of Russian Literature. For example, the leading translators of Russian Literature, Pevear and Volokhonsky, make use of Mirsky's history. Their translation of Chekhov stories even recommends Mirsky's section on Checkhov. Their recommendation is, of course, of much greater import than mine.
Mirsky created a classic historical work of literature. It is one of the guides you need to understand some of the greatest literature of all time.
It also provides some entertaining lingual gems - the writer Derzhavin's prose, for example, is by Mirsky characterised as 'virile', and his philosophy as 'manfully thankful for the joys of ephemeral life', while the influent literary criticist Belinsky's style is condemned as 'execrable lingo'.
Anyone interested in Russian literature should read this book. As a reference book it serves excellently.
Prose writing was promoted by the Empress Catherine. Satirical journals were founded. The political shift to reaction following the French Revolution resulted in the closing of a journal publishing serious social satire on the subject of serfdom. The editor, Novikov, proceeded to start a publishing company, 1775-1789, and formed the Russian reading public. Karamzin reformed Russian literary language. It was Europeanized and became the language of Pushkin. Karamzin wrote THE HISTORY OF THE RUSSIAN STATE, 1818.Read more ›