Menu
9780393006001 198

Dead Souls

Paperback

Nikolai Gogol (Author), George Reavey (Translator)

With an Introduction by George Gibian

Our Retail Price:£22.50

Add to Basket

Description

Part I of Dead Souls was published in 1842. Part II of Dead Souls exists only in fragments. The novel belongs to the great unfinished works of world literature (such as The Aeneid) whose incompletion bothers us very little.

A few factual points ought to be explained to the reader, even though the novel itself eventually suffices to clarify some of them. First, the title of the book. Among Russian serf-owning gentry, the idiomatic way to assess someone’s wealth was to express it in terms of the number of “souls” he owned—that is, male, adult serfs. Taxes on serfs had to be paid by the owner until the next census or registration date even if they may have died in the meantime. Gogol’s “dead souls,” in addition to this literal reference to serfs who had died since the last registration date for serfs, are also a metaphor for the dead moral and spiritual sensibilities of the many inhabitants of Gogol’s zoo. This title ran into trouble with Gogol’s censors, who held the ridiculous suspicion that the title might be a blasphemous attack on the immortality of the human soul. Gogol therefore added the title “Chichikov’s Adventures.”

Also By: Nikolai Gogol View all by author...

  • 9780811219471 72

    The Night Before Christmas

    Nikolai Gogol, Constance Garnett

    Paperback, 2011

    Nikolai Gogol's hilarious and macabre tale of a Christmas Eve with a devil and a romantic twist.

Also By: George Gibian View all by author...

  • 9780393007237 72

    Russia's Lost Literature of the Absurd

    Daniel Kharms, Alexander Vvedensky, George Gibian, George Gibian

    Paperback, 2008

    “The Russian literary heritage of the 1920’s and 1930’s continues to grow as significant works are uncovered that were long forgotten or never published. The most recent find is not a single work...
  • 9780393966473 72

    War and Peace

    Leo Tolstoy, George Gibian

    Second Edition, Paperback, 1995

  • 9780393966428 72

    Anna Karenina

    Leo Tolstoy, George Gibian

    First Edition, Paperback, 1995