Audible The Little Tragedies – Albawater.co

In a major burst of creativity, Russian poet Alexander Pushkin during just three months incompleted Eugene Onegin, composed than thirty lyric poems, wrote several short stories and folk tales, and penned the four short dramas in verse that comprise the little tragedies The little tragedies stand among the great masterpieces of Russian literature, yet they were last translated into English a quarter century ago, and have in recent years been out of print entirely In this outstanding new translation, Nancy K Anderson preserves the cadence and intensity of Pushkin s work while aligning it with today s poetic practices and freer approach to metrics In addition she provides critical essays examining each play in depth, a discussion of her approach to translating the plays, and a consideration of the genre of these dramatic pieces and their performabilityThe four little tragedies Mozart and Salieri, The Miserly Knight, The Stone Guest, and A Feast During the Plague are extremely compressed dialogues, each dealing with a dominant protagonist whose central internal conflict determines both the plot and structure of the play Pushkin focuses on human passions and the interplay between free will and fate though each protagonist could avoid self ruin, instead he freely chooses it


10 thoughts on “The Little Tragedies

  1. Florencia Florencia says:

    Pushkin s came to us as a new guiding light, a brilliant illumination of our dark way In this sense Pushkin is a presage and a prophecy. Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Pushkin Speech 1880 Ambition Envy Nostalgia Survival.The past was not necessarily better when human beings have maintained some particular patterns over the years And Pushkin, an exceptional influence for the greatest writers of Russia and all over the world, shared his views on the human nature through the mastery of his poetry This Pushkin s came to us as a new guiding light, a brilliant illumination of our dark way In this sense Pushkin is a presage and a prophecy. Fyodor Dostoyevsky, Pushkin Speech 1880 Ambition Envy Nostalgia Survival.The past was not necessarily better when human beings have maintained some particular patterns over the years And Pushkin, an exceptional influence for the greatest writers of Russia and all over the world, shared his views on the human nature through the mastery of his poetry This book contains four plays in verse The Miserly Knight , Mozart and Salieri , The Stone Guest and A Feast during the Plague Brilliantly written, with humor and tragedy in every line, they depict situations that are not entirely uncommon for us, simple mortals, the children of dust The essence of these plays relies on the fact that Pushkin described these situations with the art of conciseness They are short works and therefore, difficult to perform And still, that fascinates me What is the point of writing plays that are so difficult to stage The beauty of romantic irony.Following the plays, there is a critical essay for each one I read them, of course, but not with my full attention, honestly I want to keep my interpretation intact That doesn t happen with every writer I always want to know the right interpretation, what the author really meant With Pushkin, I don t feel like I have to know everything just my thoughts while reading it I will write about two of those four plays that amazed me with both content and execution The first verses of The Miserly Knight immediately reminded me of the greed that rhythmically walks among the pages of The Brothers Karamazov Do we really have to care about what will happen to our material things after we die Money Money will remain there, unless we spend it It will not mourn us, it will not die with us Baron I am a kingbut who will follow me, Who will take this power My heir A boy who throws money around like mad, With his hellraising friends out for a good time 238 241 Oh, if only I could hide this vault from all Unworthy eyes Oh, if from my graveI could arise, a ghostly watchman, And sit upon the chest, and guard my treasures Against the living, as I guard them now 270 275 Worst of all, it gives us a false sense of omnipotence something that, inevitably, brings a real sense of loneliness Loud, unforgiving loneliness.Baron What s not in my power From here, Like a demon I can rule the world 177 178 There is a man whose world turns around his wealth and there is a man whose poverty does not allow him to live with dignity That cannot end well.Human beings feel free when they have wealth It is the freedom of a golden cage built in a world ruled by money.Duke A terrible age, terrible hearts 381 The second play that I will refer to is Mozart and Salieri.It starts with Salieri speaking about his creative process He dedicated himself to the study of music Sometimes even forgetting to eat or to sleep, he obediently studied every form, every structure, every sound He was looking at music from the coldest point of view, abandoning everything he loved And only then, he began creating Salieri By concentrated, constant effortFinally in the unbounded realm of artI achieved a high place 40 42 I couldn t feel guilty because of this For I do not want a high place I write because I need to I don t want this to be all work and strict effort I couldn t do that even if I wanted to I can t function that way I sit and I write And I eat and I get up And sometimes I move on, too I can t be a surgeon of the words I can t dissect literature to know its every corner.I don t own the writing process That might be the difference between a high place and the little nook I chose to write my gibberish.Moreover, some of us are even afraid of the high place The admirable quest for it can transform the noblest genius into a contemptible envier And all the hard work gets lost amid the implacable vapor of oblivion Pushkin s Salieri knows it well He personifies the degeneration of the artist One whose jealousy transforms him into a villain.Mozart He s a genius,Like you and me And genius and crimeAre two things that don t combine Isn t that true 199, 201 It is true.So, the poet did it again.We take a look at our lives and we often want somethingWe want something different We want magic Sometimes, that magic can be achieved while holding a humble pen with no other intention but to empty the mind Release it from every sorrow, every doubt and joy.Magic Pushkin, the immortal sorcerer.July 19, 14 Also on my blog


  2. Agir(آگِر) Agir(آگِر) says:


  3. Alan Alan says:

    I read Mozart and Salieri in Russian , and considered the the Salieri film, which achieved some fame, plagiarism Pushkin begins with Salieri s provocative monolog, 2pp, on his happiness hearing music as a child, the church organ even brought tears, then studying under old Gluck, working very hard, enjoying his friends advancement As he began writing in secret, ,Killing the sound, I split open music like a corpse 39 I was happy, until the hol I read Mozart and Salieri in Russian , and considered the the Salieri film, which achieved some fame, plagiarism Pushkin begins with Salieri s provocative monolog, 2pp, on his happiness hearing music as a child, the church organ even brought tears, then studying under old Gluck, working very hard, enjoying his friends advancement As he began writing in secret, ,Killing the sound, I split open music like a corpse 39 I was happy, until the holy gift, the deathless genius, without hard work, little paid, without feverish intent, came into the mind of a reveller who listens to fiddlers in bars O Mozart Whereupon Mozart enters, bringing the bar fiddler, but also filled with respect for Salieri, tells him he s a god, too Last of the four short plays, Pushkin translates from John Wilson play on plague 1816 titling his, The Feast during the Plague, focusing on the best part of the English, and also turning Walsingham, Master of the Revels, into the hero The main interlocutor is a priest, but at the end a woman s voice in the next room shouts, He s crazy, he raves about burying his wife The priest leaves the feast with Walsingham, asking God to forgive my son Bradda Books, English intro by Terras, 1966


  4. Pinkerton Pinkerton says:

    Non avevo la pi pallida idea di cosa aspettarmi in quest occasione, non ho alcuna dimestichezza in questo campo, ok so chi Mozart ed ho sentito parlare di Salieri, ma per il resto stata una piacevole sorpresa Pur essendo ormai riconosciuta come immeritata la cattiva fama di Salieri, per quanto breve questo episodio l ho trovato particolarmente intenso, il motivo non saprei dirvelo nemmeno io, una di quelle cose che non riesco a spiegarmi Ma non vedo perch lambiccarmi il cervello cerca Non avevo la pi pallida idea di cosa aspettarmi in quest occasione, non ho alcuna dimestichezza in questo campo, ok so chi Mozart ed ho sentito parlare di Salieri, ma per il resto stata una piacevole sorpresa Pur essendo ormai riconosciuta come immeritata la cattiva fama di Salieri, per quanto breve questo episodio l ho trovato particolarmente intenso, il motivo non saprei dirvelo nemmeno io, una di quelle cose che non riesco a spiegarmi Ma non vedo perch lambiccarmi il cervello cercando una ragione, quindi mi sono limitato a godermi pienamente l attimo di questo avvelenamento Altro paio di maniche il convitato di pietra, con il Don Giovanni di nome e di fatto cascamorto sbruffone e impenitente, in un certo qual modo mi ha ricordato alcune delle partner occasionali di Rat Man, fate un po voi D D inoltre un immagine assai poco lusinghiera delle sue innumerevoli conquiste che lo spingono continuamente a cercar guai e chi cerca trova Per devo dire di essere rimasto pi colpito di quanto immaginassi


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  9. Dwight Dwight says:

    have posted on Mozart and Salieri earlier Pushkin does a wonderful job of embodying two disparate views of art in his characters Salieri places art on a lofty plane, able to justify murder in order to save it Mozart s quote above is in direct contrast to everything Salieri has worked for and the esteem he desires Pushkin also pushes the idea of the sacred accessible through the profane Salieri s asceticism in his personal life carries over to his have posted on Mozart and Salieri earlier Pushkin does a wonderful job of embodying two disparate views of art in his characters Salieri places art on a lofty plane, able to justify murder in order to save it Mozart s quote above is in direct contrast to everything Salieri has worked for and the esteem he desires Pushkin also pushes the idea of the sacred accessible through the profane Salieri s asceticism in his personal life carries over to his music His repugnance of all things corporeal limits his reach for something higher Mozart wallows in his humanness, enjoying life and obtaining something Salieri recognizes as divine H ighly recommended for happy idlers.There is a marvelous recording of the play that uses Alan s translation in a five part YouTube series The other three pieces don t consistently achieve the same level as Mozart and Salieri but they do have plenty of enjoyable moments The Stone Guest presents a version of the Don Juan legend As Alan points out in his Afterword an extremely helpful analysis of the stories lust is not the driving force of Don Juan as he is lured by the thrill of the chase instead Pushkin goes out of his way to highlight Don Juan s excitement in illicit pursuit The stone guest turns out to be the statue of a lover s husband who was murdered by Don Juan Just as the statue s physique exaggerates the physical attributes of the dead husband, Don Juan s mythology has likewise grown over the years Pushkin s enigmatic Don Juan reflects some of the expected parts of the myth but adds some interesting twists as well Feast During the Plague might be the slightest of the stories but there remains plenty to chew over regarding its meaning s Well to do city dwellers attend a feast, enjoying their apparent exemption from the death that occurs around them Walsingham, presiding over the feast, rebukes a priest as he seems to celebrate life His outlook, though, appears to come at a cost Walsingham s hymn to the plague is the high point of the piece, a moving celebration of life and all it entails All, all that threatens to destroyHolds for the mortal heart a joyOf inexplicable delight,That seems to pledge eternity And happy he who in his plightHas tasted that discovery The Miserly Knight is my favorite story after Mozart and Salieri The humorous opening scene, focusing on the poverty of the erstwhile knight, is followed up by a wonderful scene focusing on the knight s father in his money vault While the son debases the ideal of a knight, his father mocks it with his language The key to a money chest is compared to a sword, where sliding it into the lock gives as much pleasure, supposedly, as a knight plunging his sword into an opponent Alan has put together a wonderful publication These may not be listed as part of Pushkin s major works but the additional information and context provided by Alan elevate their enjoyment Highly recommended


  10. Manik Sukoco Manik Sukoco says:

    Written as a series, and remarkably quickly all four completed between 23rd October and 8th November 1830 The Little Tragedies are Shakespearian in the situations and in the aspects of human nature that they address In her essays about the plays, Nancy K Anderson writes Each of the little tragedies is an examination of the type of single minded, self willed passion that blinds a person, so that the warnings of reason and conscience are equally powerless, and the path of self destruction i Written as a series, and remarkably quickly all four completed between 23rd October and 8th November 1830 The Little Tragedies are Shakespearian in the situations and in the aspects of human nature that they address In her essays about the plays, Nancy K Anderson writes Each of the little tragedies is an examination of the type of single minded, self willed passion that blinds a person, so that the warnings of reason and conscience are equally powerless, and the path of self destruction is deliberately chosen Elsewhere she backs that with Each play is the story of a great and gifted figure who could avoid his own self ruin, and who instead freely chooses it The length of all the plays is, however, well short of any of Shakespeare s only 1390 lines in total and the relative quality of the poetry, Pushkin s vs Shakespeare s, is no doubt a matter best left to their respective enthusiasts For my part, I will say that, sadly, the product of Anderson s translation into English does not merit comparison with Shakespeare or any major English poet.That is a pity, for in moments such as Your imagination will fill in all the blank spots in a minute It works faster than a portrait painter Taken from The Stone Guest and speaking of Don Juan with reference to an attractive woman, we certainly get a welcome glimpse of the authentic Pushkin.Anderson s use twice of the term skirt chaser jars It is anachronistic in the late medieval contexts of The Miserly Knight and of The Stone Guest and has now again become very dated