Vlas Doroshevich in B O D Y

“Abl-Eddin bowed and said: ‘You can execute me but you should grant me a fair trial. You can impale me, but let us first ask the people if they really grumble, if they are really discontented. You have the means to do so. I myself gave you these means. You can turn them against me now.’”

From “The Green Bird” by Vlas Doroshevich, a rediscovered Russian writer from the beginning of the 20th century in this week’s Sunday European Fiction in B O D Y.

A former journalist colleague of Chekhov’s, Doroshevich had such a dramatic and unusual life that if were the plot of a novel the novelist would be accused of being wildly unrealistic. His mother was from a rich upper-class family but was disinherited for marrying an unsuccessful writer of lower social standing. She abandoned her son at six months old to the Doroshevich family but managed to get him back 10 years later though he then left school and home at 16 to experience life, worked briefly as a laborer and dock worker before beginning his career as a journalist and writer that would make him a rich man until the revolution (which he welcomed) came along to utterly destroy him.

What the Emperor Cannot Do: Tales and Legends of the Orient is a collection of Doroshevich’s “Oriental Tales” published by Glas New Russian Writing last year, after which it was reviewed in Literalab .

Read more Sunday European Fiction:

The Sixty-Year Old Woman and the Young Man by Nora Iuga

Little Mary” by Andrei Ruse

The Blake Precept” by Sándor Jászberényi

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Categories: Saturday European Fiction


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