Alma Classics are in the course of publishing the first complete edition of Pushkin’s lyrics and shorter poetry with both original Russian texts and English translations supported by copious notes and background information. The collection is appearing in four successive volumes, covering in chronological order the four main periods of Pushkin’s creative life.
Volume I, containing Pushkin’s poetic output during his years at the Imperial Lycée at Tsarskoye Selo, came out in 2018. Volume II was published earlier this year. Volume II contains the 216 shorter verses that Pushkin composed between the ages of 21 and 25, the turbulent but fruitful years he spent first as a young tearaway in St Petersburg, then as a traveller in the Caucasus and Crimea, and latterly as a government official in imperial disfavour ordered to serve far from the metropolis in Moldavia and Ukraine. Many of the poems are hardly known in the English-reading world, except among Russian scholars. They vary widely in content – lyrics of love and friendship, album verses, dedications, verse epistles, brief narratives, political and literary polemics, epigrams, invectives – but all display combinations of Pushkin’s characteristic intelligence, wit, sensitivity and passion, expressed with superb artistry and concision. Together they give a fascinating insight into the poet’s turbulent emotions, views and personality over this period.
The experienced British Pushkinist Roger Clarke, who has already edited and translated many of Pushkin’s major works for Alma Classics, is the editor of this series and one of the translators. In this talk Roger will update us on progress with the project and will give a brief introduction to Volume II. Readings of selected poems will follow in both Russian and English. There will be time for questions and discussion, as well as for informal conversation among lovers of Pushkin and those wishing to learn more about him. Copies of the new volume and of Alma Classics’ other Pushkin titles will also be available for purchase.
The event is sponsored jointly by the Pushkin Club and Alma Classics, and all are welcome.
In English, with some Russian.