Yes, it's a blog about reading.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Thinking about Gogol

What do people think of Gogol, I wonder? I listened to a couple of his short stories on tape last year (“The Overcoat” and “The Nose”), but I don’t quite know what to make of them. As an aside, the only interesting thing (to me, I know others liked it) about last year’s pallid novel, “The Namesake” by Jhumpa Lhahiri was the father’s connection to Russian literature. His grandfather advised him to “read the Russians, and then reread them. They will never fail you.” He is reading Gogol’s “The Overcoat” when the train crashes, which ends up saving his life. He names his son Gogol as a tribute. The reason I bring it up is that while reading the Introduction to AK, Gogol is mentioned as a contemporary of Tolstoy’s. I'm reading Tolstoy now (well, rereading, actually) and I've read Pushkin and Turgenev and some of Dostoeyvsky. I think I should read some of Tolstoy's short stories. Reading the introduction to AK, I realize how little into Russian literature I have really delved.


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