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Scenes from the Bathhouse And Other Stories of Communist Russia

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ISBN-10: 0472060708

ISBN-13: 9780472060702

Edition: 1962

Authors: Mikhail Zoshchenko, Sidney Monas

List price: $26.95
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Book details

List price: $26.95
Copyright year: 1962
Publisher: University of Michigan Press
Publication date: 11/13/1959
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 272
Size: 5.50" wide x 8.00" long x 0.50" tall
Weight: 0.638

His first book of stories appeared in 1921 and became extraordinarily popular. However, he came under political pressure in the 1930s because some of his works, such as Youth Restored (1933), were too slyly ambiguous to fit the socialist realist model. In 1946, together with Akhmatova, he was singled out for an extraordinary attack by culture "boss" Andrei Zhdanov and was expelled from the Union of Soviet Writers. From then on he mostly produced translations. Zoshchenko was an extremely effective satirist who took his subjects from the paradoxes and incongruities of post-Revolutionary Russian society. He showed that human nature, which the new government was trying to change, would assert itself nonetheless. His language is fascinating. He often chooses lower-class narrators who speak in a mixture of the colloquial and of the new Soviet rhetoric---with highly comic results. During the 1930s, Zoshchenko's fiction began to explore philosophical and theoretical problems. A well-known example is Before Sunrise, the first part of which was published in 1943. In it the author analyzes his own psyche, in the process touching on the then-forbidden theories of Freud. Publication of the complete text of this work did not occur until 1972.