Authors & Events
Look Inside | Reading Guide
Oct 14, 2003
| ISBN 9780812970081
Aug 10, 2010
| ISBN 9780307742964
Dec 18, 2007
| ISBN 9780307432155
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Oct 14, 2003 | ISBN 9780812970081
Aug 10, 2010 | ISBN 9780307742964
Dec 18, 2007 | ISBN 9780307432155
First published in 1891, this morality tale pits a scientist, a government worker, his mistress, a deacon, and a physician against one another in a verbal battle of wits and ethics that explodes into a violent contest: the duel. When Laevsky, a lazy youth who works for the government, tires of his dependent mistress, Nadyezhda Fyodorovna, Von Koren, the scientist, delivers a scathing critique of Loevsky’s egotism, forcing the young man to examine his soul. The Duel is a tale of human weakness, the possibility of forgiveness, and a man’s ultimate ability to change his ways. It is classic Chekhov, revealing the multifaceted essence of human nature.
Includes a new forward by the screenwriter Mary Bing In Anton Chekhov’s The Duel the escalating animosity between two men with opposed philosophies of life is played out against the backdrop of a seedy resort on the Black Sea coast.Laevsky is a dissipated romantic given to gambling and flirtation; he has run off with another man’s wife, the beautiful but vapid Nadya, and now finds himself tiring of her. The scientist von Koren is contemptuous of Laevsky; as a fanatical devotee of Darwin, von Koren believes the other man to be unworthy of survival and is further enraged by his treatment of Nadya. As the confrontation between the two becomes increasingly heated, it leads to a duel that is as comically inadvertent as it is inevitable. Masterfully translated by the award-winnning Richard Pevear and Larissa Volokhonsky, The Duel is one of the most subtle examples of Chekhov’s narrative art.
Anton Pavlovich Chekhov (1860–1904) was a Russian playwright and short story writer who is considered to be among the greatest writers of short fiction in history. His career as a playwright produced four classics, and his best short stories are… More about Anton Chekhov
“Chekhov’s art . . . is dedicated to explicit and definitive portraiture and the muscular trajectory of whole lives.”—Cynthia Ozick
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