St. Petersburg

Overview

It started as a swamp built over by an autocrat as a signal to the West that Russia was indeed worthy. What was eventually wrought after hundreds of years was a series of deliberate fantasy spaces punctuated by the drab and gray hunger of the everyday, the perfect setting for the work of Dostoevsky, Gogol and Pushkin. Woodworth (history, Yale U.) and journalist Richards describe how Petersburg supported and augmented the work of such disparate authors as well as new generations of poets in this most literary of ...
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Overview

It started as a swamp built over by an autocrat as a signal to the West that Russia was indeed worthy. What was eventually wrought after hundreds of years was a series of deliberate fantasy spaces punctuated by the drab and gray hunger of the everyday, the perfect setting for the work of Dostoevsky, Gogol and Pushkin. Woodworth (history, Yale U.) and journalist Richards describe how Petersburg supported and augmented the work of such disparate authors as well as new generations of poets in this most literary of Russian cities, and how the salons, tenements, teas, and frozen garrets of this city worked with the white nights, pale palaces, black water and leaden streets to inspire large and small masterpieces. Annotation ©2006 Book News, Inc., Portland, OR
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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 11 Up-The focus of this book is on the role of sites in St. Petersburg and specific aspects of the city in the works of writers from the Golden Age of Russian literature through the Silver Age, and even its importance to recent poets. Thus, there are chapters on Pushkin, Gogol, and Dostoevsky, as well as one devoted to leading literary figures of the 20th century. Carefully selected quotes from literary works convey well the relevance of the city, and the authors make abundant use of the writings of the best literary critics to interpret the works themselves. In addition, historical, socioeconomic, and cultural information is skillfully woven into this elegantly written text. An added bonus for anyone planning to visit the city is a section on places of interest that have been mentioned. Eight pages of photographs appear in the middle of the book; they are mainly portraits of the writers, so readers may want to have an architectural history of the city on hand, such as Dmitri Shvidkovsky's St. Petersburg (Abbeville, 1996) to complement this excellent book. An occasional typo was allowed to slip by and, in a few cases, the authors used unnecessarily esoteric vocabulary such as trottoirs (the French and Russian word for sidewalks). This is a solid purchase for schools in which Russian language and history courses are offered, and it would be a welcome addition for anyone planning a trip to Russia.-Elizabeth Talbot, University of Illinois, Champaign Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780791078372
  • Publisher: Chelsea House Publishers
  • Publication date: 9/28/2005
  • Series: Bloom's Literary Places Series
  • Pages: 224
  • Age range: 14 years
  • Product dimensions: 5.70 (w) x 8.60 (h) x 0.70 (d)

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