Slavic and East European Journal
"The authors accomplish a rare tour de force: in remarkablyfew pages readers are exposed to the entire sweep of Russianliterary culture, not as a summary but as an intellectualcommentary on a great world literature. A terrific book forstudents and general readers alike."
Jeffrey Brooks, Johns Hopkins University
"An adventurous and provocative meditation on Russian literaryhistory that throws unexpected new light on apparently familiarfigures, as well as introducing new writers, new connections, and anew sense of context. Wachtel and Vinitsky’s account ofRussian literature gives proper emphasis to the pre-Petrine era andthe eighteenth century, as well as the nineteenth and twentiethcenturies, but is much more than a standard potted history. Theyare able to emphasise large themes, such as the role of literaturein the rise of nationalism, and at the same time to search outstriking and offbeat examples from sources such as unpublishedmemoirs. Their book is one of the most original and stimulatingaccounts of the subject to appear in any language."
Catriona Kelly, New College, Oxford
"To transmit the evolving spirit of a culture takes as muchmagic as chronology, and this mesmerizing volume delivers the bestof all worlds. At flashpoints over a thousand years, selectpersons, artworks, and events are triangulated into miniaturestories, each alive with human faces at thrilling creativerisk."
Caryl Emerson, Princeton University
"This readable, challenging book fills a serious gap in ourstudies of Russian literature: it covers the entire history ofwriting on Russian soil and it does so as proper history, with wellargued theses about the development of this literature in culturalcontext, taking culture in both aesthetic and anthropologicalsenses of the word. Fresh, persuasive readings illuminate each ofthe dozen chapters."
William Mills Todd, Harvard College