Anatoly Smeliansky. Is Comrade Bulgakov Dead? Mikhail Bulgakov at the Moscow Art Theatre. Translated by Arch Tait. New York: Routledge, 1993. viii, 374 pp. $39. 95.

Anatoly Smeliansky. Is Comrade Bulgakov Dead? Mikhail Bulgakov at the Moscow Art Theatre.... Any student of Russian drama and theater owes a debt of gratitude to Harold Segel for this book, which, fifteen years after its original publication, remains the only survey of its kind in English. Therefore, my critical comments are written in the hope that others (including myself will be spurred to undertake the considerable task of fleshing out the fascinating picture of works written for and produced on the Russian stage during our turbulent twentieth century. The book's overall structure combines chronological and thematic organization. This orga- nizational schema works best at the level of chapters and sub-chapter headings. Within sec- tions, however, Segel's interweaving of descriptive detail and analytical insights seems rather random. The body of Segel's work is extended plot summaries that sometimes con fusingly convert tightly structured dramatic material to rambiing narrative. There is selected information on significant productions, as well as comparisons with well-known models of Western dra- maturgy. The resulting admixture is probably more satisfying for the casual rather than purpose- ful reader, for whom the descriptions, though lengthy, are a poor substitute for reading the original. For this reason, it is to be regretted that the book's bibliography is not arranged by http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Canadian-American Slavic Studies Brill

Anatoly Smeliansky. Is Comrade Bulgakov Dead? Mikhail Bulgakov at the Moscow Art Theatre. Translated by Arch Tait. New York: Routledge, 1993. viii, 374 pp. $39. 95.

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Publisher
BRILL
Copyright
© 1996 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
ISSN
0090-8290
eISSN
2210-2396
D.O.I.
10.1163/221023996X01096
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Any student of Russian drama and theater owes a debt of gratitude to Harold Segel for this book, which, fifteen years after its original publication, remains the only survey of its kind in English. Therefore, my critical comments are written in the hope that others (including myself will be spurred to undertake the considerable task of fleshing out the fascinating picture of works written for and produced on the Russian stage during our turbulent twentieth century. The book's overall structure combines chronological and thematic organization. This orga- nizational schema works best at the level of chapters and sub-chapter headings. Within sec- tions, however, Segel's interweaving of descriptive detail and analytical insights seems rather random. The body of Segel's work is extended plot summaries that sometimes con fusingly convert tightly structured dramatic material to rambiing narrative. There is selected information on significant productions, as well as comparisons with well-known models of Western dra- maturgy. The resulting admixture is probably more satisfying for the casual rather than purpose- ful reader, for whom the descriptions, though lengthy, are a poor substitute for reading the original. For this reason, it is to be regretted that the book's bibliography is not arranged by

Journal

Canadian-American Slavic StudiesBrill

Published: Jan 1, 1996

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