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Oblomov (Penguin Classics) Paperback – September 27, 2005
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"Neverworld Wake" by Marisha Pessl
Read the absorbing new psychological suspense thriller from acclaimed New York Times bestselling author Marisha Pessl. Learn more
About the Author
Ivan Goncharov (1812–1891) was the son of a rich merchant family, spent most of his life as a civil servant, and published three novels.
David Magarshack was known for his many translations from his native Russian, including works by Dostoyevsky.
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I thought the translation by Marian Schwartz was excellent and seamless. After having read comparisons, I prefer this version updated by Goncharov. But I am not an expert...
Elbows will also hold a distinct meaning to you after you read this book too, I would think. ;)
Oblomov is the name of the leading character, a man raised by landed gentry on a country estate, pampered by his parents to the point of having a servant to put on his socks. As an adult, Oblomov moves to the capital, St. Petersburg, and lives off the income from his estate. The problem: he is totally unable to take any initiative whatever. In the first 50 pages or so, he doesn't even leave his bedroom.
He falls in love, and even though the target of his affection reciprocates, he can't decide to ask her to marry him.
The book is sad, and funny, and thoughtful. From this book, the word oblomovism (обломовщина) entered the Russian language, in reference to a gentrified class of people who were superfluous to the society.