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Russian Literature: A Very Short Introduction by Kelly Catriona (2001-12-06)

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    Available in PDF - DJVU Format | Russian Literature: A Very Short Introduction by Kelly Catriona (2001-12-06).pdf | Language: UNKNOWN
    Catriona Kelly(Author)

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4.4 (6802)
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  • PDF | Unknown pages
  • Catriona Kelly(Author)
  • Oxford University Press, USA (1765)
  • Unknown
  • 3
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Review Text

  • By Vince on January 6, 2015

    A totally misleading title. This is a short introduction to Pushkin who is the only Russian author dealt with in any real sense. Passing reference is made to all the other great authors and little effort is put into giving a sense of Russian literature as a whole. The purpose of this series of short introduction books is not well served by an academic who is more enthralled with her unusual approach to the subject. That is not what these books are about. The nature of the series creates an expectation that the editors should have know this book would not fulfill. This thesis has its place but that place is not in a series like the one it is now in. The first "Very Short Introduction" book in which I have been totally disappointed.

  • By Stephen Drury on January 8, 2018

    I was expecting an intro to Russian Literature...that would include chapters on more Russian writers...this is more an intro to Pushkin.No biggie, but, knowing what I know now, probably wouldn't have purchased.

  • By Janice on December 2, 2015

    Over-wrought.

  • By M. A. Seifter on March 21, 2017

    I was really expecting a better, more readable study of Russian literature. Although it is plain that Ms. Kelly knows her material, and can quote, by name and text, from any and all Russian writers, as well as a goodly number of non-Russian authors, her study, despite its admirable length, gives insufficient detail to the actual narrative of evolving Russian literature. Her prose is clunky and academic, and she repeatedly avoids common-sense narrative, opting instead for long, convoluted sentences that appear to wander all around the place, losing thereby the focus of what she presumably wishes to say. Her book is an example of the increasing irrelevance of academic prose for any purpose other than to vaunt reputations with the closed caste of uni/college titled pedagogues.

  • By Guest on March 18, 2016

    The book just doesn't do his job: it's not the clear, well-organized introduction to Russian literature that the layman may expect and benefit from. It all revolves around Pushkin, while all the other authors, as well as the various literary movements, are just scattered casually here and there in the book with passing references. Impossible to look up authors, movements, historical periods. I guess the only person who would benefit from this book is someone who is already knowledgeable about Russian literature, who enjoys Pushkin a lot and is not actually looking for an introduction to Russian literature. Just abysmal.

  • By A. Ross on June 23, 2004

    If you're looking for a basic introduction to Russian literature, this is probably not a very good place to start. Now, I know the title has the words "Russian Literature" and "Introduction" in itóbut don't let that mislead you. Kelly has purposely set out to avoid the "standard" approach to the topic, which she says tends to take one of three forms: a chronological canon of writers and their works, a chronological trip through literary movements and cultural topics of relevance, or a more personal essay of appreciation. In retrospect, I now recognize that, not having read a great deal of Russian literature, I was looking for a mix of the canon and the literary movements. Instead, what I found in Kelly's work was a confusing attempt to attack the material by using the "Russian Shakespeare" (Aleksander Pushkin) as a framing device.Through the seven essayish chapters, Pushkin is used as a starting point for the discussion, and then various other writers and themes are introduced in relation to his work or attitudes. As one jacket blurb puts it, this is "an unexpected approach to the subject". And as another blurb puts it, "you may love it, perhaps loathe it, or feel perplexed, but not remain indifferent." Well, mark me down for perplexed. I'm not at all opposed to this approach to the topic, it just doesn't seem particularly well suited as an introduction. It's hard to imagine anyone without a solid grounding in the major Russian writers being able to summon up love or hate for this brief work. It simply assumes too much familiarity on behalf of the reader to be of any utility to the newcomer to Russian literature. So, perhaps I'll return to it in 15 years, after I've had a chance to read some of the vital works, but in the meantime, I'm still trying to learn what those might be.

  • By Dimostenis Yagcioglu on February 24, 2007

    The author of this book is indisputably an expert in Russian Literature -- and it shows in the book. Through her studies and research on various dimensions and periods of Russian Literature, Catriona Kelly has formed her own approach, or her own point of view, about this vast topic, and this book is an introduction to Kelly's approach to Russian Literature, rather than an introduction to Russian Literature per se.As the previous reviewer wrote, the book is not for people who want to get an initial idea on the Russian Literature. In my case (and I consider myself a "novice" in this subject), it was only after reading another introductory book (as short as this one) that I realized how many important authors and trends and debates were left out of this "very short introduction".Catriona Kelly is correct to place Pushkin in the center of Russian Literature, but I wish she described in more detail what preceded him, and other, perhaps equally significant authors and poets who followed him.I would recommend this book only to people who are already familiar with Russian literature and are open to new ways at looking at it.


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