Reading Lermontov's A Hero of Our Time / The Demon in Russian (Paperback)
Presented here together, in their entirety - in the original Russian and in a facing English translation, new for this edition - are two masterpieces of Russian literature by Mikhail Lermontov (1814-1841), both set in the Caucasus: The Demon, a narrative poem, and A Hero of Our Time, a novel.
The Demon was deemed so scandalous at the time it was written that it was first published in Russia only in 1856 - and then only in a handful of copies for the royal family It tells of a beautiful Georgian princess, Tamara, who awakens long-forgotten feelings of love in a Demon when he sees her dancing on the eve of her wedding. After the untimely death of her would-be husband, Tamara enters a convent, but a voice continues to tempt her. At last the Demon appears to her, to profess his love... and Tamara's soul hangs in the balance...
A Hero of Our Time is many things at once: a travelogue documenting the astounding natural beauty of the Caucasus and the spirit of its many peoples; an adventure novel with everything from kidnappings to duels; a catalogue of tragic romantic encounters; a novel of (bad) manners; and a disturbing psychological study of its infamous anti-hero, Pechorin, the first (alongside Pushkin's Evgeny Onegin) of many deeply conflicted - if not demonic - figures in Russian literature. As Lermontov himself makes clear, the idea that Pechorin is "heroic" is to be taken with a great deal of irony
Mirroring each other in many ways, these two works are productively read together, with The Demonproviding a fantastical poetic overture to the realist prose of A Hero of Our Time. Together, they make for captivating reading.
Book 4 in the "Reading Russian" series, this edition provides the original text and facing English translation, together with all the vocabulary notes and reference tables you need to make sense of the original. Designed to help students of Russian begin to enjoy real Russian literature in the original without constantly reaching for a dictionary, this parallel-text edition features a new translation made specifically for this purpose, as well as detailed Russian vocabulary notes, including all the important forms you need (especially aspectual pairs and conjugation types for all verbs). The original Russian text is marked for stress, but is otherwise unedited and unsimplified.