Understanding Chekhov: A Critical Study of Chekhov's Prose and Drama

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Overview


Of all Russian writers, Chekhov is one of the best liked and most easily appreciated. Yet he is also one of the most elusive. Here Donald Rayfield reveals the layers of meaning on which the great dramatist's stories and plays are built. He examines his brief twenty-year creative life, from medical student supplementing his income by writing comic stories to his rapid rise as the father of twentieth-century drama and narrative prose. Understanding Chekhov is enriched by revelations from previously unexplored archival material, which deepen our understanding of Chekhov's sources, preoccupations, philosophy, and his relations with theater, with fellow writers, and with contemporary ideas.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"An outstanding book. . . . The best introduction to Chekhov, man and work, today."—Robert L. Jackson, Yale University
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780299163143
  • Publisher: University of Wisconsin Press
  • Publication date: 7/28/1999
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 1,029,032
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Donald Rayfield, one of the foremost Chekhov scholar in the world, is author of the monumental 1997 biography Anton Chekhov: A Life. He is professor of Russian and Georgian, Queen Mary and Westfield College, London.

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Table of Contents

Note on Transliteration
Introduction
1 Formation of a Writer 1
2 Five Years in Grub Street 7
3 Suvorin and Tolstoy: The Great and The Good 32
4 The Free Writer 46
5 Disease and Self-Destruction 58
6 The Early Plays 72
7 The Consequences of Sakhalin 93
8 Melikhovo 114
9 The Seagull 135
10 Confession 150
11 Uncle Vania 165
12 Peasants 183
13 Love 198
14 Three Sisters 213
15 Valediction 227
16 The Cherry Orchard 240
Select Bibliography 267
Index Pt. 1 Chekhov's Works 278
Index Pt. 2 Names, Places and Topics 284
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