BOOKS

Crime and Punishement - Illustration by Stanley Wyatt

FYODOR DOSTOYEVSKY’S CRIME AND PUNISHMENT NOTES

Rodion Raskolnikov is a young intellectual in his early twenties. Crushed by poverty, he has been forced to drop out of the university and now lives in a shabby little garret unable to pay the rent or buy food. With no prospects for the future, finding no outlet for his talents, he rages against a society callously indifferent to people like him.

JEAN GIONO: THE MAN WHO PLANTED TREES

The Man Who Planted Trees (French title: L’homme qui plantait des arbres) is an allegorical tale by French author Jean Giono, published in 1953. It tells the story of one shepherd’s long and successful singlehanded effort to re-forest a desolate valley in the foothills of the Alps in Provence throughout the first half of the 20th century.

STEPHEN KING: INTERVISTA A PLAYBOY

Nel giugno del 1983 Playboy Usa incontra un maestro del brivido che nella sua successiva carriera avrebbe pubblicato oltre sessanta opere, tutte regolarmente entrate nella classifica dei bestseller. King racconta gli inizi molto difficili, il successo inaspettato e quella sottile linea di follia che tiene legata fin dal principio tutta la sua produzione.

“All Quiet on the Western Front” Reflects the Postwar Mind

All Quiet on the Western Front is often praised for the way it faithfully captures not only the physical experi­ence of war, but the psychological bent of the young sol­diers who were caught up in its futile and alienating brutality. Modris Eksteins, professor of history at the University of Toronto, Canada, argues that it is more accurate to say that Remarque captured the postwar mind.

We: Madmen, Hermits, Heretics, Dreamers, Rebels, and Skeptics

Yevgeny Zamyatin has a sound claim to the invention of the science fiction dystopia. This book, Zamyatin’s only novel, barely saw publication during his tragically shortened lifetime. The Russian text spread by hand-typed samizdat manuscripts in the St. Peters­burg literary circles and through tattered, covert copies of a single emigre publication in Prague.

The Incomparable Atuk: A Canadian Eskimo’S American Dream – by Arnold E. Davidson

The title of The Incomparable Atuk suggests a certain satiric borrowing from The Great Gatsby. Gatsby may have been “great,” but Atuk is “incomparable.” The similarity between the two works extends considerably beyond their titles, however, for Atuk pursues his dream of his own destiny with a dedication worthy of Gatsby himself.

Elie Wiesel: Night – Preface

If in my lifetime I was to write only one book, this would be the one. Just as the past lingers in the present, all my writings after Night, including those that deal with biblical, Talmudic, or Hasidic themes, profoundly bear its stamp, and cannot be understood if one has not read this very first of my works. Why did I write it?

SU TONG – MOGLI E CONCUBINE

Per sfuggire alla povertà la giovane Songlian accetta di diventare quarta sposa e concubina del ricco Chen Zuoqian.

NOTA SU «DOPPIO SOGNO» – di Giuseppe Farese

Non v’è dubbio che la tematica onirico-reale-surreale di Traumnovelle, scritta da Arthur Schnitzler fra il 1921 e il 1925 ma già abbozzata nel 1907, eserciti una singolare attrazione sul lettore e lo induca, quasi naturalmente, a guardare alla psicoanalisi come al più vicino, ineludibile modello del suggestivo racconto.

LIGEIA (1838) by Edgar Allan Poe

I cannot, for my soul, remember how, when, or even precisely where, I first became acquainted with the lady Ligeia. Long years have since elapsed, and my memory is feeble through much suffering.

Elie Wiesel: Memories Of Jerusalem

When did I see Jerusalem for the first time? I don’t even know. When I visited the city for the first time, it seemed to me that it was not for the first time. At the same time, each visit since then I have had the feeling it is my first visit.

IVAN ILYCH: THE TRAGEDY OF AN UNEXAMINED LIFE

The Death of Ivan Ilych, by the Russian writer Leo Tolstoy, is the story of a dying man’s struggle to come to terms with the meaning of his life, even as he endures an agonizing death.