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The rehearsals by Vladimir Sharov

The rehearsals

by Vladimir Sharov

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For all the historical absurdity and literary provocation in Sharov’s alternative histories, there is something deeply resonant about the religious—and especially eschatological—undercurrents he sees behind the horrors of the Soviet experiment. Sharov has written of the influence of Andrei Platonov, whose depictions of revolutionary society are laced with apocalyptic motifs.

But such millenarian aspects of early Bolshevism can be found in the historical record as well, as emphasized in Yury Slezkine’s recent work. In contemporary Russia, the resurgence of a certain quasi-religious medievalism as both aesthetic and social praxis (as Dina Khapaeva has argued) suggests that Sharov’s repetitions might even extend to the present day. Indeed, what is perhaps most surprising about this truly extraordinary novel is that a full thirty years after it was written, it remains as fresh and relevant—if not more so—than when it was first published.

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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Vladimir Sharovprimary authorall editionscalculated
Ready, OliverTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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