Eastern European Poets Series 32
A Science Not for the Earth
POETRY / Russian & Former Soviet Union
Mar 01, 2016
8.21 x 7.71 x 1.78 in
Coach House Books
Ugly Duckling Presse
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; in the English-speaking world, his work remains virtually unknown. Even during his lifetime, despite the fame he achieved with his psychologically acute love elegies and meditations written in the early 1820s, his later lyric verse was ignored or misunderstood by most of his contemporaries. Yet itis 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-length poetic series 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).