100 years since the Russian Revolution: the 20th century’s greatest Russian writers respond
‘This is the last of you, old world – soon we’ll smash you to bits.’
The passionate voices of radicals, dreamers, workers, aristocrats, satirists and romantics fill these electrifying poems and prose pieces, written between 1917 and 1919 in the full tumult of the Russian Revolution.
From apocalyptic visions to heartfelt calls for freedom, from depictions of bloody carnage to an acerbic portrait of Lenin, the writings brought together here are by turns fervent, absurd, disorienting and tragic.
Some writers – Bulgakov, Pasternak, Mayakovsky, Akhmatova – are well-known, others all but forgotten; many would not survive what was to come. All speak to us a century later, re-creating the whirlwind of euphoria and terror, hopes and betrayals of that exhilarating, brutal time.