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Thursday, August 2, 2012

A Big Event: How Chekhov Took On Tolstoy

This event is taking place in Sydney. If you are into the Russians then this is an event not to be missed!

Author Rosamund Bartlett is giving a talk next week in Sydney on Checkhov  V  Tolstoy

"At first glance, the relationship between Anton Chekhov and Lev Tolstoy seems reminiscent of that between David and Goliath. Chekhov's brief life fits entirely within that of Tolstoy's eighty two years and thirty slim volumes of his collected works are also dwarfed by the ninety volumes of Tolstoy's which even physically are twice the size. Yet the two authors, born thirty two years apart, formed an important friendship in the latter part of Tolstoy's life, and once Chekhov had got over his awe of the 'grea

t writer of Russian land' (in Turgenev's famous phrase), he was not afraid to engage with his aesthetic and moral ideas on the page. This talk will situate this celebrated and important relationship in the political and literary climate of late imperial Russia and show how Chekhov's short stories and plays subtly challenged the towering edifice of Tolstoy's literary oeuvre, showing the way forward for artistic growth in the twentieth century.

Rosamund Bartlett is a writer, translator and lecturer from Oxford who has held senior academic posts in the fields of Russian literature, music and history, most recently at the European university in Florence. Her books include Wagner and Russia, edited volumes on Shostakovich and the Futurist opera, Victory over the Sun and acclaimed biographies of Chekhov and Tolstoy.

As a translator she has published the first uncensored edition of Chekhov's letters, and her Chekhov anthology, About Love and Other Stories was shortlisted for the Weidenfeld Translation Prize. Her new translation of Anna Kernina is forthcoming from Oxford World's Classics in 2014. Current book projects include a history of the early 20th-century Russian avant-garde. She has extensive experience travelling to Russia and Eastern Europe and in 2013 will be accompanying a tour from Moscow to the Black Sea for the Friends of the New South Wales Art Gallery."

Vegetarian meals available, must be requested when booking! Make sure you include your name in payment details and send an email to "" for your receipt/ticket or post cheque payable to Soirees Litteraires - PO Box 572 - Paddington NSW 2021.

Bookings by 3rd August 2012
Dinner and Talk is $40 per person non-refundable

6.30pm - 7/08/2012
Level 3 - East Leagues Club
93 Spring St, Bondi Junction

Pay by online banking transfer:
BSB 032-051
Account No. 162 874
Account Name: Soirees Litteraires -
Bank: Westpac, Bondi Junction NSW

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