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Diary, 1901-1969

Diary, 1901-1969

Edited by Victor Erlich
Translated by Michael Henry Heim
Copyright Date: 2005
Published by: Yale University Press
Pages: 656
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  • Book Info
    Diary, 1901-1969
    Book Description:

    A perceptive literary critic, a world-famous writer of witty and playful verses for children, a leading authority on children's linguistic creativity, and a highly skilled translator, Kornei Chukovsky was a complete man of letters. As benefactor to many writers including Alexander Solzhenitsyn and Joseph Brodsky, he stood for several decades at the center of the Russian literary milieu. It is no exaggeration to claim that Chukovsky knew everyone involved in shaping the course of twentieth-century Russian literature. His voluminous diary, here translated into English for the first time, begins in prerevolutionary Russia and spans nearly the entire Soviet era. It is the candid commentary of a brilliant observer who documents fifty years of Soviet literary activity and the personal predicament of the writer under a totalitarian regime.From descriptions of friendship with such major literary figures as Anna Akhmatova and Isaac Babel to accounts of the struggle with obtuse and hostile censorship, from the heartbreaking story of the death of the daughter who had inspired so many stories to candid political statements, the extraordinary diary of Kornei Chukovsky is a unique account of the twentieth-century Russian experience.

    eISBN: 978-0-300-13797-2
    Subjects: History

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. Note from the Publisher
    (pp. vii-viii)
  4. Introduction
    (pp. ix-xviii)

    Kornei Chukovsky’sDiary,which covers the years from 1901 to 1969, is a cultural document of major importance. At the dawn of the twentieth century, while yet a brooding adolescent, Chukovsky committed himself to jotting down his thoughts and impressions with some regularity; he was still at it as a venerable octogenarian. The voluminous record, whose abridged version follows, spans sixty-eight years of its author’s adult life and ranges from the pre-1917 heyday of Russian modernism well beyond the cultural ferment of the post-Stalin era.

    Chukovsky was born in 1882 in Saint Petersburg as Nikolai Korneichukov, the illegitimate son of...

  5. Diary, 1901–1969
    (pp. 1-549)

    Curious! I’v e been keeping a diary for several years and I’m used to its free form and informal content—light, motley, whimsical: I’ve filled several hundred pages by now. Yet coming back to it, I feel a certain reticence. In my earlier entries I made a pact with myself: it may be silly, it may be frivolous, it may be dry; it may fail to reflect my inner self—my moods and thoughts—granted, so be it. When my pen proved incapable of giving bold and concise expression to my hazy ideas, which the moment after they came to...

  6. Illustrations
    (pp. None)
  7. APPENDIX: Excerpts from “What I Remember; or, Fiddle-Faddle”
    (pp. 550-566)
  8. Periodicals, Publishing Houses, Abbreviations, and Acronyms
    (pp. 567-574)
  9. Biographical References
    (pp. 575-610)
  10. Index
    (pp. 611-630)