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Understanding Boris Pasternak

Larissa Rudova

Corrects the narrow Western view of the writer famous for the novel Doctor Zhivago

In this introduction to the life and work of Boris Pasternak, Larissa Rudova contends that although Doctor Zhivago won Boris Pasternak the Nobel Prize in 1958 and made him a cold war celebrity, it alone does not reflect the breadth of his literary achievements. Here she presents a more balanced view of the writer by analyzing, in addition to his famous novel, the poetry that defined his long career and established him as one of Russia's greatest twentieth-century writers.

Rudova examines the influence of Russia's cultural environment on Pasternak's career and speculates on a mystery that continues to puzzle scholars—how he survived Stalin's political and cultural purges and managed to publish virtually uninterrupted. In her analyses of his poetry collections, short stories, critical essays, translations, one novel, and two autobiographies, Rudova comments on Pasternak's stylistic complexity and discusses the thematics, structure, and imagery that distinguish his work.

Larissa Rudovais an assistant professor of Russian at Pomona College. She is the author of Pasternak's Short Fiction and the Cultural Vanguard.



book jacket for Understanding Boris Pasternak


6 x 9
210 pages
ISBN 978-1-57003-143-4
cloth, $39.95s
Understanding Modern European and Latin
American Literature


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