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- DescriptionThe 900-day siege of Leningrad (1941-44) was one of the turning points of the Second World War. It slowed down the German advance into Russia and became a national symbol of survival and resistance. An estimated one million civilians died, most of them from cold and starvation. Lydia Ginzburg, a respected literary scholar (who meanwhile wrote prose 'for the desk drawer' through seven decades of Soviet rule), survived. Using her own using tes and sketches she wrote during the siege, along with conversations and impressions collected over the years, she distilled the collective experience of life under siege. Through painful depiction of the harrowing conditions of that period, Ginzburg created a paean to the dignity, vitality and resilience of the human spirit. This original translation by Alan Myers has been revised and antated by Emily van Buskirk. This edition includes 'A Story of Pity and Cruelty', a recently discovered documentary narrative translated into English for the first time by Angela Livingstone.
- Author BiographyLydia Yakovlevna Ginzburg was born in Odessa in 1902, and moved to Leningrad in 1922, where she studied at the famous Institute for Art History as a student and later as a colleague of Victor Shklovsky, Yury Tynianov and Boris Eikhenbaum, the major figures of Russian Formalism. She survived the purges, the 900-day siege of Leningrad and the anti-Semitic campaigns that followed the war to become, in the 1960s-'80s, a friend and inspiration to a younger generation of Petersburg literary scholars and poets, including Alexander Kushner and Elena Shvarts. She was a prominent cultural figure in the years of perestroika, when she began to publish notes and essays that she been writing for the 'desk drawer' starting in the 1920s. Her books include venerated works of literary scholarship such as On Lyric Poetry, On Psychological Prose (published in the English translation from Princeton University Press) and On the Literary Hero. The collection of her prose that appeared in her lifetime, Person at a Writing Table (1989), and which contained Notes from the Blockade, as well as posthumous editions, have established Ginzburg as innovative author of what she called 'in-between' genres - notes, essays, and fragmentary narratives - that describe and analyse the human experience of a historically catastrophic era spanning much of the twentieth century. Lydia Ginzburg died in 1990.
- Author(s)Lidiya Ginzburg
- PublisherVintage Publishing
- Date of Publication01/09/2016
- SubjectAutobiography: Historical, Political & Military
- Place of PublicationLondon
- Country of PublicationUnited Kingdom
- ImprintVintage Classics
- Weight195 g
- Width129 mm
- Height198 mm
- Spine15 mm
- Format DetailsB-format paperback
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