Isaac Babel's work has left an indelible mark on modern literature. The scope of this Norton Critical Edition surpasses that of any other Babel paperback edition and includes his fiction, nfiction, autobiography, plays, and political writings together with the contextual and critical materials necessary for in-depth study. Background materials include Selected Letters of Isaac Babel to His Sister and Mother, 1926-1939, a rich collection of letters-sixty-eight in all, as well as Isaac Babel Through the Eyes of His Contemporaries, reminiscences by the contemporaries who knew Babel best, including Maxim Gorky, Tamara Ivava (Kashirina), M. N. Berkov, and Dmitry Furmav, among others. Criticism reprints four major assessments of Babel's legacy by Viktor Shklovsky, Lionel Trilling, Efraim Sicher, and Gregory Freidin. A Chrology and a Selected Bibliography are also included.
Isaac Babel was a journalist, playwright, and short story writer, whose works include the Russian masterpieces Red Cavalry and The Odessa Tales. He was arrested and executed in a Soviet prison in 1940. Gregory Freidin is Professor of Slavic Languages and Literature at Stanford University. He is the author of a critical biography, A Coat of Many Colors: Osip Mandelstam and His Mythologies of Self-Presentation, and has published widely on modern Russian literature, culture, and current affairs. After writing and lecturing on Babel for many years, he is completing a book on Babel's life and legacy. Peter Constantine's most recent translations are Sophocles' Theban Trilogy, The Essential Writings of Machiavelli, and The Bird is a Raven by Benjamin Lebert, which was awarded the Helen und Kurt Wolff Translation Prize. He was awarded the PEN Translation Prize for Six Early Stories by Thomas Mann, and the National Translation Award for The Undiscovered Chekhov: Thirty-Eight New Stories. His translation of the complete works of Isaac Babel received the Koret Jewish Literature Award and a National Jewish Book Award citation. He has recently translated Gogol's Taras Bulba, Tolstoy's The Cossacks, and Voltaire's Candide for Modern Library. He was one of the editors for A Century of Greek Poetry: 1900-2000, and is a senior editor at Conjunctions.