Some call him a Russian Mark Twain. And with his special blend of comedy, social commentary, and fantasy, Nikolai Gogol paved the way for his countrymen Tolstoy and Dostoyevsky. This sampling of Gogol’s works includes the increasingly fantastic entries of “The Diary of a Madman,” followed by the wonderfully surrealistic “The Nose,” in which the title character embarks on some unlikely activities when separated from its owner’s face. In “The Carriage,” a pompous landowner gets his comeuppance when he attempts to impress a general. Rounding out the collection are the woefully comic tale of a clerk’s acquisition of “The Overcoat” and the celebrated novella “Taras Bulba” about the Ukrainian mythic hero said to have led a bloody Cossack revolt against the Poles.
Translated by Priscilla Meyer and Andrew R. McAndrew
Nikolai Vasilevich Gogol was born in 1809; his family belonged to a minor gentry of Ukrainian Cossack extraction, and his father was the author of a number of plays based on Ukrainian popular tales. He attended school in Nézhin and gained… More about Nikolai Gogol