It is the story of Zhivago, poet and physician, and his struggle to keep his family alive in the midst of the overwhelming chaos of the Russian Revolution. And, it is about Zhivago's love for the beautiful Lara, the woman he pursues beyond all reason, the human symbol of life's sweetness and joy....
From the Paperback edition.
The story behind the "real-life" odyssey of Boris Pasternak's epic novel DR. ZHIVAGO is perhaps more stirring than the narrative of the book itself. Pasternak, a renowned poet in his native Russia, worked on the novel periodically for more than 40 years before submitting it for publication. The book was rejected by Soviet officials who disagreed with its portrayal of the disintegration of the Bolshevik cause under Stalin. Giangiacomo Feltrinelli, an Italian publisher and communist activist, smuggled the manuscript out of Russia and published it in 1957. Riding the publicity of this scandal, the book became an international bestseller, and was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1958, though Pasternak had to refuse the award under pressure from Soviet officials. In 1987, 27 years after Pasternak's death, the Soviet ban was lifted and one of the greatest masterpieces of Russian literature was finally published in Russia.
It is the story of a pure-hearted doctor and poet who acts as a reluctant witness to the momentous events surrounding the meteoric rise and inexorable decline of Soviet communism. Dr. Zhivago wants nothing more than a quiet life, helping to heal the sick, loving his family, and transforming the beauty he sees all around him into poetry. He tries to act as the voice of reason during the Bolshevik Revolution of 1917 and the brutal civil war that followed, but the forces at work are far too strong to be contained by a single man. Meanwhile, Zhivago struggles to stay true to his wife, Tonya, and their children, even though his heart truly belongs to Lara, a true love from his past who was swept away in the tide of the revolution. The sheer, stunning breadth of the novel, which is rich with the images and wisdom Pasternak accumulated as he lived the very events he portrays, marks it as one of the greatest works of 20th century literature.
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- October 4, 2011
- October 4, 2011
- Boris Pasternak, Boris Leonidovich Pasternak