Russian Literature: 1953-Present


Andrei Georgievich Bitov (Андрей Георгиевич Битов). 

Краткая биография

"The Idler" in Russian: "Бездельник" (Note that the main character has a different name: Vitya.)

Some Bitov stories in Russian.

Reading Guide:

To what extent is this story specific to Soviet society and to what extent is it simply a coming of age story that could describe the experiences of a young person in any society?

The scene with the horse is quite reminiscent of Raskolnikov's dream in Dostoevsky's Crime and Punishment.  After a comparative reading of these passages, how would you characterize the difference in the portrayal of human nature in the two works?

The story's ending is rather ambiguous.  What do you make of the last two paragraphs of the work?  What is your prediction for Alyosha's future?