The Heart of a Dog

The Heart of a Dog

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by Mikhail Bulgakov
     
 

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A new edition of Bulgakov’s fantastical precursor to The Master and Margarita, part of Melville House’s reissue of the Bulgakov backlist in Michael Glenny’s celebrated translations.

A key work of early modernism, this is the superbly comic story of a Soviet scientist and a scroungy Moscow mongrel named Sharik. Attempting a medical first,

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Overview

A new edition of Bulgakov’s fantastical precursor to The Master and Margarita, part of Melville House’s reissue of the Bulgakov backlist in Michael Glenny’s celebrated translations.

A key work of early modernism, this is the superbly comic story of a Soviet scientist and a scroungy Moscow mongrel named Sharik. Attempting a medical first, the scientist transplants the glands of a petty criminal into the dog and, with that, turns a distinctly worryingly human animal loose on the city. The new, lecherous, vulgar, Engels-spouting Sharik soon finds his niche in govenrmental bureaucracy as the official in charge of purging the city of cats.

A Frankenstein fable that’s as funny as it is terrifying, Heart of a Dog has also been read as a fierce parable of the Russian Revolution. It was rejected for publication by the censors in 1925, and circulated in samizdat for years until Michael Glenny translated it into English in 1968—long before it was allowed to be officially published in the Soviet Union. That happened only in 1987, although till this day the book remains one of Mikhail Bulgakov’s most controversial novels in his native country.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
“As high-spirited as it is pointed. Unlike so much satire, it has a splendid sense of fun.” —Eileen Battersby, Irish Times

“Bulgakov here assaults the dour utilitarian lives of Soviet citizens with a defiant,
boisterous display of nonsense.”  —The Times

“One of the greatest of modern Russian writers, perhaps the greatest.” —Nigel Jones, Independent

Nigel Jones
A blanket of silence succeeded in muffling, but never entirely stifled, his voice. An underground reputation persisted. Young people gathered each week on the stairway of his last home in Moscow's Arbat quarter to read from, act out and debate his work. In the West, in the theatre and literature, he is relished as one of the greatest of modern Russian writers, perhaps the greatest. -- The Independent
Library Journal
Published in 1967, 1975, and 1968, respectively, these display Bulgakov's satiric eye on Russian life.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781612192888
Publisher:
Melville House Publishing
Publication date:
07/30/2013
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
144
Product dimensions:
7.92(w) x 5.08(h) x 0.40(d)

What People are saying about this

From the Publisher
“As high-spirited as it is pointed. Unlike so much satire, it has a splendid sense of fun.” —Eileen Battersby, Irish Times

“Bulgakov here assaults the dour utilitarian lives of Soviet citizens with a defiant,
boisterous display of nonsense.”  —The Times

“One of the greatest of modern Russian writers, perhaps the greatest.” —Nigel Jones, Independent

Joyce Carol Oates
Bulgakov is richly inventive, with an eye for the grotesque and the satirical.
—(Joyce Carol Oates)

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