8 comments

  1. During our frequent Skype sessions, when I tell my mom what new amazing book I’ve read recently, she is always worried that I almost never read Russian lit 🙂 I also haven’t read any Russian classics since high school, and only now I’m starting to think that they may be more exciting if read for pleasure and not just as primary sources for numerous compositions 🙂 So kudos for going back to reading Russian lit in Russian! I’m also going to do this a lot next year!

  2. I think it’s the endless compositions that really put me off Russian classics, so I blame school! 🙂 Last year I read The Karamazov Brothers and it was so weird to read a classic in Russian without any obligations afterwords. It’s funny you mention it, but my mom keeps telling me that I’ll forget my own language if I don’t read in it more. I think she is right, because I see my spoken Russian vocabulary suffering more and more as years go by. I need to get back into it! I did see the enormous number of books you committed to reading next year on your blog, so I’ll be looking forward to your posts about those.

  3. Oh, yes, spoken vocabulary is a problem! Sometimes it’s difficult for me to remember words in Russian, and only English or Czech equivalents come to mind. And Czech declinations are also trying to make their way into my Russian speech, as they are so similar to Russian ones, and it’s easy to confuse them 🙂 Anyway, good luck to you, let’s see how we’ll manage our “back to school” projects 🙂

  4. Thanks! Good luck to you too!

  5. So glad to have you join the read-along! 🙂 And what a great idea to add in his shorter works – I’ve read Queen of Spades, but someday I want to read Ruslan and Ludmila and Tale of the Dead Princess (similar to Snow White?).

  6. I figured I’d go ahead and get all the Pushkin I can get this time. I’ve read most of his work when I was a kid for school, but I don’t remember much at all. I do believe Tale of the Dead Princess is similar to Snow White, but substitutes gnomes with Russian legendary knights called “bogatyrs”. There is a whole cycle of “bylinas” (tales) about the three most famous bogatyrs that I am planning to read soon too.

  7. I’m so glad that you’ll be participating too, Andrea! I’ve heard that Eugene Onegin is an untranslatable poem, so you will be a great help to the rest of us!

    I checked my library to see if they had any other Pushkins so I could perhaps join you reading another of his works but sadly they have nothing but EO. :-Z So I will just have to look forward to your updates on the rest!

  8. Thank you for your kind words Cleo! I can see Pushkin being untranslatable in general. In Russian his poems are very easy to read. They paint images and emotions very expressively and you don’t have to think much to figure out what the poet means by his words. And I think because Russian has so many untranslatable words makes it really hard to convey their meaning in a different language. Sometimes I think the problem lies with translators trying too hard and focusing on rhyming instead of relaying a clear narrative. Poetry is just too tricky to be taken from one language to another. But I hope I can be of help to others when we start the read-along.

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