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  Nikolai Gogol

Dead Souls: a novel

286 страниц. 2011 год.
Nikolai Gogol is one of Russia's greatest novelists, and his masterpiece DEAD SOULS is a brilliant satire about what we today know as "human trafficking" or slavery and what has always been the human inequality that exists where there are no human civil rights. It is played out here in pre-Soviet Russia. Gogol criticizes these abuses and does it with sharp observation and laughter. This book at first had difficulties with the censor, but was finally published. It is a work of stunning originality about Chichikov, a conman who buys serfs who have died but who are still on the tax rolls and then uses the dead serfs as collateral for loans. On another level Chichikov's journey is a descent into the comic hell of Russian reality. Typical failings of humanity are embodied in the types of people that Chichikov meets on his journey. Chichikov himself is the personification of banality and lack of good character. The picture that Gogol paints is one of oppressive stupidity and corruption.
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