Ivan Bunin won the Nobel Prize in 1933, but by the time of his death in 1953 the world of the Russian emigres in Paris had come to seem a mere backwater. The Red Army's victories seemed a vindication of the Soviet regime, and emigre literature seemed to have lost all relevance. The Soviet authorities ignored it, while Western Slavists, understandably felt it more important to be devote their energies to trying to understand the Soviet Union. During the last 20 years, however, the richness of Russian Paris has become more and more apparent. First Tsevetaeva and Bunin, then Teffi and Khodasevich have emerged from the shadows.
Professor Angela Brintlinger will discuss both Bunin and her translation of Khodasevich's biography of Derzhavin. Robert Chandler will talk about Nadezhda Teffi and read some of his translations of Georgy Ivanov, who, in his last months, wrote some of the finest short lyrics in the Russian language. There will be plenty of time for audience discussion; we see the evening as an open forum about the Russian emigre world.