Thursday, September 16, 2021

My hero / Alexader Pushkin by Elaine Feinstein

 

Alexander Pushkin


My hero: 

Alexander Pushkin

 by Elaine Feinstein

Pushkin transformed every form of Russian literature he touched. By Elaine Feinstein


Saturday 6 November 2010

He was exiled to southern Russia just before his 21st birthday for verse written against despotism. Those poems were found among the papers of many of the Decembrists. The failure of their rebellion against Tsar Nicholas I in 1825 led to executions that haunted Pushkin all his life. When Nicholas summoned him to inquire into his loyalties, Pushkin declared that, had he been in St Petersburg, he would have been on Senate Square with his friends. Nicholas appeared impressed by his frankness and allowed him back to the capital, but appointed Count Benkendorff to keep an eye on what he was writing. In Soviet times, poets who were censored or silenced found Pushkin an inspiration. Anna Akhmatova revered him.

Pushkin chose a cold young beauty for a wife. Natalya loved balls at court, where she was surrounded by admirers and wore expensive dresses Pushkin could not afford. He longed to retreat to his country estate, but the tsar would not allow him to remove Natalya from court. After receiving letters accusing him of being a cuckold, Pushkin felt obliged to fight a duel to defend his wife's honour. He lost his life in it at the age of 37.

THE GUARDIAN




2009
001 My hero / Oscar Wilde by Michael Holroyd
002 My hero / Harley Granville-Barker by Richard Eyre
003 My hero / Edward Goldsmith by Zac Goldsmith
004 My hero / Fridtjof Nansen by Sara Wheeler 
005 My hero / Mother Mercedes Lawler IBVM by Antonia Fraser

007 My hero / Ernest Shepard by Richard Holmes
008 My hero / JG Ballard by Will Self
009 My hero / Alan Ross by William Boyd
010 My hero / Ben the labrador by John Banville

011 My hero / Vicent van Gogh by Margaret Drabble
012 My hero / Franz Marek by Eric Hobsbawm

2010

017 My hero / Jack Yeats by Colm Tóibín
018 My hero / Francisco Goya by Diana Athill
019 My hero / Max Stafford-Clark by Sebastian Barry
020 My hero / Arthur Holmes by Richard Fortey

036 My hero / Robert Lowell by Jonathan Raban
037 My hero / Beryl Bainbridge by Michael Holroyd
038 My hero / Charles Schulz by Jenny Colgan
039 My hero / Oliver Knussen by Adam Foulds
040 My hero / Annie Proulx by Alan Warner

041 My hero / David Lynch by Paul Murray
042 My hero / Edwin Morgan by Robert Crawford
043 My hero / Anne Lister by Emma Donoghue
044 My hero / Jane Helen Harrinson by Mary Beard
045 My hero / Edmund Burke by David Marquand
046 My hero / Shelagh Deleaney by Jeanette Winterson
047 My hero / Christopher Marlowe by Val McDermid
048 My hero / Gwen John by Anne Enright
049 My hero / Michael Mayne by Susan Hill
050 My hero / Stanley Spencer by Howard Jacobson

051 My hero / William Beveridge by Will Hutton
052 My hero / Jean McConville by Amanda Foreman
053 My hero / Alexander Pushkin by Elaine Feinstein
058 My hero / Cy Twombly by Edmund de Waal

2011
079 My hero / Gene Wolfe by Neil Gaiman
087 My hero / Alberto Moravia by John Burnside
096 My hero / Isaac Babel by AD Miller
097 Lucian Freud by Esi Edugyan
100 Thomas Tranströmer by Robin Robertson
102 My hero / David Hockney by Susan Hill

2012

190 My hero / Iris Murdoch by Charlotte Mendelson
194 My hero / René Descartes by James Kelman
199 My hero / Albert Camus by Geoff Dyer

2015
2016


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