An enchanting collection of the very best of Russian poetry, edited by acclaimed translator Robert Chandler together with poets Boris Dralyuk and Irina Mashinski. In the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries, poetry’s pre-eminence in Russia was unchallenged, with Pushkin and his contemporaries ushering in the ‘Golden Age’ of Russian literature. Prose briefly gained the high ground in the second half of the nineteenth century, but poetry again became dominant in the ‘Silver Age’ (the early twentieth century), when belief in reason and progress yielded once more to a more magical view of the world. During the Soviet era, poetry became a dangerous, subversive activity; nevertheless, poets such as Osip Mandelstam and Anna Akhmatova continued to defy the censors.
This anthology traces Russian poetry from its Golden Age to the modern era, including work by several great poets – Georgy Ivanov and Varlam Shalamov among them – in captivating modern translations by Robert Chandler and others. The volume also includes a general introduction, chronology and individual introductions to each poet.