Poetry. Letters. Translated from the Russian by Rawley Grau. Edited by Ilya Bernstein. It is only in the past quarter-century or so that Yevgeny Abramovich Baratynsky (1800-1844) has gained wide recognition in Russia as one of the great poets of the 19th century. While the psychologically acute love elegies and meditations he wrote in the early 1820s earned him some fame during his lifetime, his later lyric verse was ignored or misunderstood by most of his contemporaries. Yet it is this body of work in particular, where he explores fundamental questions about the meaning of existence from an analytical epistemological perspective, that today seems remarkably modern. The poet's radical skepticism, as well as his increasing sense of isolation from the literary world, is reflected most profoundly in his lyric masterpiece, the book Dusk (Sumerki, 1842)—translated in its entirety in this volume—a work that is notable, among other things, for being the first collection of poems published in Russia as a coherent literary cycle (a practice that would become standard only 60 years later).Featuring some 75 poems, from the early elegies to poems from his final years, Baratynsky's A SCIENCE NOT FOR THE EARTH will be the first representative collection of the poet's lyric verse in English.The translations by Rawley Grau aim to be as semantically close to the original as possible while still conveying a strong sense of the formal aspects of the verse. A selection of Baratynsky's letters, reflecting his critical thoughts on writing as well as his personal struggles, is also included. The book is guest-edited by Russian-American poet Ilya Bernstein.
Elena Pedigo Clark @ Slavic and East European JournalPublishers Weekly review
Yevgeny Baratynsky (1800-1844) achieved fame with his earliest poems, psychologically acute love elegies and meditations written in the first half of the 1820s. In this early period, he was closely identified with the movement in Russian poetry that coalesced around Pushkin. Largely neglected by critics in the latter half of the 19th century, Baratynsky's work received a new appreciation only with the Symbolist poets in the early 20th century and later with Akhmatova and Mandelstam; most recently, Joseph Brodsky and Aleksandr Kushner have especially underscored the importance of Baratynsky for their own writing. Author City: Muranovo RUS