Traveling Companions

Friedrich Gorenstein, Author, Bernard Meares, Translator, Fridrikh Gorenshtein, Author Houghton Mifflin Harcourt P $21.95 (214p) ISBN 978-0-15-191074-8
Born in Kiev and now an exile in Berlin, Gorenstein is a lethal satirist of Soviet life. This freewheeling, digressive narrative records a chance meeting on a train between Felix Zabrodsky, a Moscow writer (stand-in for the author himself) and an elderly cripple, Alexander Chubinets, who tells of his shattered dreams as a peasant playwright, of the Nazi occupation of the Ukraine and of seven years in Arctic labor camps. Imprisoned on charges of ``Ukrainian nationalism'' for a play he wrote, Chubinets was released in 1957 but was banned from working in big cities. He ended up working as an assistant stage manager in small towns across Russia. Gorenstein punctuates his seemingly casual tale with digressions on the perils of ideology, Ukrainian anti-Semitism, sex in literature, his dislike of Russians and much else. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 09/30/1991
Release date: 10/01/1991
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