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Resistance

by Victor Serge

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Victor Serge, an authentic witness of the political and cultural struggles of the 20th century, wrote these poems ofResistance in Orenburg in Central Asia, where he was sent into exile by Stalin in 1933. He eulogizes close friends and comrades and movingly records and shares the lives of the people he lived among on the steppe, far from the centers of power, intrigue, and history. Richard Greeman writes in his introduction that Serge "spoke the truth aloud and perpetuated the spiritual tradition of the Russian revolutionary intelligentsia at the very moment when the voices of his colleagues were forced into silence (so that) this collection of poems, written in deportation on the Ural, represents a unique strand of continuity between a lost generation and what one hopes will be a new beginning, 'with no blank pages,' in Soviet literature." "Victor Serge'sMemoirs contain the fiber and metaphor of poetry: his novels are replete with the same pulse and rhythm. Even his titles--Birth of Our Power--have a ringing quality. Now, withResistance, we are given the poems that described and survived the midnight of our century, written with a balanced passion and sobriety--optimism of the will--from the other shore." --Christopher Hitchens, author ofHitch-22 "The poems in this slender volume vividly record his years spent fighting in the Russian Revolution before Serge was exiled in 1933 to central Asia. . . . Serge's biting irony, unlike that found in his Russian contemporaries, conceals an unfailing hope and sensitivity--he does not simply mourn the death of a friend, but records the look and feel of the unbreathing body with a lover's gentleness." --Publishers Weekly Victor Serge (1890-1947), born in Brussels, Belgium, was a Russian revolutionist, writer, translator, and journalist. He published his first article in 1908 for "Lé Revolté" and L'Anarchie," where he later became editor. During his early life, he spent most of his time joining various parties such as the anarchists, communists, and Bolsheviks. However, in 1928, he was expelled from the Communist Party and most of his writings began from this point forward. He wrote fiction and non-fiction novels and poems. His most famous non-fiction, revolutionary book isMemoirs of a Revolutionary… (more)

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Although much of Serge’s poetry bears the marks of the place and time in which it was written-an outpost of the gulag during the extermination of the Bolshevik old guard-it is by no means didactic or political verse. In Trust”’ for example, he is almost lyrical (“I’ve seen the steppe turn green and the child grow”) about the natural and human symphony. And in “Boat on the Ural River,” you do not have to know that his companions on the voyage are fellow deportees, because the poem is about friendship and hardship... Serge occupied that fragile and fascinating span that extended between the Surrealist Manifesto and the platform of the Left Opposition; between Andre Breton and the betrayal of Barcelona.

added by SnootyBaronet | editThe Nation, Christopher Hitchens
 

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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Victor Sergeprimary authorall editionscalculated
Brook, JamesTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Greeman, RichardIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Victor Serge, an authentic witness of the political and cultural struggles of the 20th century, wrote these poems ofResistance in Orenburg in Central Asia, where he was sent into exile by Stalin in 1933. He eulogizes close friends and comrades and movingly records and shares the lives of the people he lived among on the steppe, far from the centers of power, intrigue, and history. Richard Greeman writes in his introduction that Serge "spoke the truth aloud and perpetuated the spiritual tradition of the Russian revolutionary intelligentsia at the very moment when the voices of his colleagues were forced into silence (so that) this collection of poems, written in deportation on the Ural, represents a unique strand of continuity between a lost generation and what one hopes will be a new beginning, 'with no blank pages,' in Soviet literature." "Victor Serge'sMemoirs contain the fiber and metaphor of poetry: his novels are replete with the same pulse and rhythm. Even his titles--Birth of Our Power--have a ringing quality. Now, withResistance, we are given the poems that described and survived the midnight of our century, written with a balanced passion and sobriety--optimism of the will--from the other shore." --Christopher Hitchens, author ofHitch-22 "The poems in this slender volume vividly record his years spent fighting in the Russian Revolution before Serge was exiled in 1933 to central Asia. . . . Serge's biting irony, unlike that found in his Russian contemporaries, conceals an unfailing hope and sensitivity--he does not simply mourn the death of a friend, but records the look and feel of the unbreathing body with a lover's gentleness." --Publishers Weekly Victor Serge (1890-1947), born in Brussels, Belgium, was a Russian revolutionist, writer, translator, and journalist. He published his first article in 1908 for "Lé Revolté" and L'Anarchie," where he later became editor. During his early life, he spent most of his time joining various parties such as the anarchists, communists, and Bolsheviks. However, in 1928, he was expelled from the Communist Party and most of his writings began from this point forward. He wrote fiction and non-fiction novels and poems. His most famous non-fiction, revolutionary book isMemoirs of a Revolutionary

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