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  1. #801
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    Quote Originally Posted by my little pony View Post
    oh i'm sure you would have an easier time finding it
    I looked. Barnes and Noble has the Russian edition--not very helpful. I wonder if it has been translated at all? It would be an exceedingly tough one to translate well.

    Haha, they should hire me. I spend a looong time looking for just the right word translating skating interviews. So I'd be done in about 10 years or so.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

  2. #802

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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    I could find the exact quote but IIRC, it was that Austen was too dry and not passionate enough for her taste. I think Austen was just fine, in fact, delightful, and Bronte too at times.
    That's true, though Emily was probably the most in the family. In her writing, anyway. But that's very reflective of the different times that they lived in. In many ways, their eras were poles apart, and valued very different qualities. (Which you probably already knew. I'm just sort of musing aloud.)
    Charter member of the "We Always Believed in Ashley" Club and the "We Believe in Ricky" Club
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  3. #803
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    I am going to give you all a taste of The Favorite, a historical novel about Grigori Potemkin, Catherine The Great's most famous and infamous lover. With major snippage and using Russian punctuation out of sheer laziness:



    BIRTH


    The orchards and vegetable gardens of Moscow had finished blooming. The air was stifling.

    An occasional bee would wonder inside a window, buzzing heavily, presaging rain.

    Inside the neighboring yard of the princes Hovanski, two washer women were fighting, lashing each other with rolled up wet laundry.

    And up in the sky there floated a kite--kids were gamboling around.

    --Gah, said the invalid. --Will pour me the last one.
    Of course, if you are pushing seventy and you are stuck as second major, the evil Fate augurs plainly: general-en-chief you, dear boy, will never be. This prediction caused the major of our troops a long-standing dejection of spirits as well as regular consumption of vodka which he chased with dried carp.

    The year 1732 established itself in Russia.


    *snip*

    After the first born daughter, Marfinka, the Potemkins had a second-Mariushka and Aleksandr Vasilich suspiciously closely stared at the infant's visage.

    --It looks too much like the Glinkas-declared he suddenly--This isn't a Potemkin nose and the eyes are all wrong.

    --What are you talking about, nose, eyes--wailed the wife--newborn babies all look the same.

    A horrible blow to the face sent her crashing on her back...The old man was crazed with jealousy. From now on he kept his wife under lock and key, reluctantly letting her out for the guests.

    *snip*
    --Beast!--she screamed at her husband. --Stop torturing me. I am with child again. Wait til I give birth, then finish me off...

    The golden autumn of 1739 arrived. On September 16, towards the end of the day Daria Vasilievna felt the labor approaching and withdrew to a banya that was crumbling on a bank of a quiet forest stream. Here, writhing on the bench, she gave birth to a son.

    Her menacing husband came in and demanded: --With whom had you conceived this filth, tell!
    He picked up the baby by the foot, like it was a loathsome toad, and went to drown it in the river. --That's where you belong--he was muttering, drunkenly stumbling along the way.

    The infant, hanging upside down, didn't make a peep. Potemkin shook the baby one more time over the deep pond where catfish rippled lazily and black crawfish crawled.

    --So whose is he? The Glinkas' or the Tuhachevskys'?
    The mother's animal howl sounded in the dark forest:
    --He is Potemkin...Leave off, you old cur!

    Thus came into the God's world Grigori Aleksandrovich Potemkin, the Enlightened Prince Tavricheski, general field-marshall and the brilliant cavalier of assorted orders, including all foreign (with the exceptions of the Golden Fleece, the Holy Spirit and the Garter), general-governor of the New Russia, creator of the glorious Black Sea Fleet, its first commander, etc., etc., etc.
    A nice antidote to the overdose of , that's for sure.
    Last edited by IceAlisa; 01-15-2012 at 10:50 PM.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

  4. #804
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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    However, the sentimentality, the protracted dialogues and monologues and
    In 19th century Brit lit?

    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    I now know what Bronte meant in her criticism of Austen and the thing Bronte despised, I happen to admire. She could use some of it herself.
    Those are the reasons that Austen is generally considered the better writer. I have always thought that she must have been a ruthless self editor, always polishing in her head.
    "The secret to creativity is knowing how to hide your sources."-- Albert Einstein.

  5. #805
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post
    In 19th century Brit lit?
    Yes, I know, I know.

    Quote Originally Posted by Prancer View Post

    Those are the reasons that Austen is generally considered the better writer. I have always thought that she must have been a ruthless self editor, always polishing in her head.
    Her writing is certainly tight and her sense of humor--delightful. Love her pragmatism too.

    I consider Austen a much better writer. I would be curious to see someone make a case to the contrary.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

  6. #806

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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    I am going to give you all a taste of The Favorite, a historical novel about Grigori Potemkin, Catherine The Great's most famous and infamous lover. With major snippage and using Russian punctuation out of sheer laziness:



    A nice antidote to the overdose of , that's for sure.
    There's a newborn dangling by his foot over the pond and you don't consider this ?? The Russian worldview must be a very unique one.
    Charter member of the "We Always Believed in Ashley" Club and the "We Believe in Ricky" Club
    Old, lonely, pathos-hungry, and extremely gullible

  7. #807
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wyliefan View Post
    There's a newborn dangling by his foot over the pond and you don't consider this ?? The Russian worldview must be a very unique one.
    I certainly don't consider it sentimental. Do you?

    No one is pining anemically or making googly eyes at the moon, that's for sure. Sort of the other extreme, actually.
    Last edited by IceAlisa; 01-15-2012 at 10:54 PM.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

  8. #808

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    Oh no, definitely not sentimental! I thought = dramatic.
    Charter member of the "We Always Believed in Ashley" Club and the "We Believe in Ricky" Club
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  9. #809
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wyliefan View Post
    Oh no, definitely not sentimental! I thought = dramatic.
    I thought = melodramatic, as in Drama Queen.

    Emoticon confusion.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

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    Easy to do. But melodramatic is different from sentimental, wouldn't you say? Sentimental is hearts and flowers and Hallmark cards; melodramatic is . . . well, it's a dad going bats and dangling a baby over a pond, I'd say!
    Charter member of the "We Always Believed in Ashley" Club and the "We Believe in Ricky" Club
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  11. #811
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wyliefan View Post
    Easy to do. But melodramatic is different from sentimental, wouldn't you say? Sentimental is hearts and flowers and Hallmark cards; melodramatic is . . . well, it's a dad going bats and dangling a baby over a pond, I'd say!
    A dad dangling a baby over a pond is actually dramatic.

    As to melodramatic:

    1. Having the excitement and emotional appeal of melodrama: "a melodramatic account of two perilous days spent among the planters" (Frank O. Gatell).
    2. Exaggeratedly emotional or sentimental; histrionic: "Accuse me, if you will, of melodramatic embroidery" (Erskine Childers).
    3. Characterized by false pathos and sentiment.

    I had the second and third definitions in mind.

    The scene of a newborn being mistreated is true pathos IMO.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

  12. #812

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    I guess one would have to read the book. To me, dangling a newborn over a pond sounds pretty over-the-top. Like the kind of story where any minute a stock villain is going to pop up, twirling his mustache and swirling his cape and declaiming, "You MUST pay the rent!"
    Charter member of the "We Always Believed in Ashley" Club and the "We Believe in Ricky" Club
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  13. #813
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    No, Wyliefan. The villain is real. I did provide the part where he was beating up and locking up his wife--that sounds like a very real villain to me. It's a horrible situation but the way Russians deal with it, is to inject a tiny bit of humor or irony in this case into a horrible situation, hence the juxtaposition of the gnarly scene in the forest and the list of the illustrious titles that infant would receive in his lifetime. The mocking tone in which the drunk is described is also an example of this style.

    IOW, isn't it ironic that this kid dangled by his foot by his drunk and crazy father and was almost drowned, would grow up to be one of the most powerful men in Russian history? I think you are confusing a bit of irony for something else, not sure what.

    OTOH, melodrama and/or sentimentality doesn't make fun of itself. It takes itself very seriously.
    Last edited by IceAlisa; 01-16-2012 at 06:49 PM.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

  14. #814

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    Well, as I've said, I haven't read the book, so I'll take your word for it!
    Charter member of the "We Always Believed in Ashley" Club and the "We Believe in Ricky" Club
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  15. #815

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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    Yes, I know, I know.

    Her writing is certainly tight and her sense of humor--delightful. Love her pragmatism too.

    I consider Austen a much better writer. I would be curious to see someone make a case to the contrary.
    Austen goes to the opposite extreme in my opinion. Her heroines are so virginal and passive, waiting to be rescued by a good marriage, not very interesting in my opinion. I often wonder if Austen had ever been kissed.

  16. #816
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    I can see how the above could be applied to some of Austen's heroines but not all. Anne in Persuasion, yes but not Lizzie Bennett in P&P.

    One could also say that Caroline Helstone in Shirley is virginal and passive. She only showed character once when she stood up for herself against Mrs. Yorke.

    One scene that gave me major creeps was when Louis Moore was going through Shirley's things and ooohing and ahhing as to how clean her articles of clothing were before stealing them and other trinkets so that he could give them back when she comes around looking for them. Creepy! And all these corny references to big cats like leopardess, pantheress and lioness are unintentionally hysterical IMO.
    Last edited by IceAlisa; 01-17-2012 at 03:28 AM.
    "Nature is a damp, inconvenient sort of place where birds and animals wander about uncooked."

    from Speedy Death

  17. #817
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    I finished up Skyship Academy yesterday. I gave it 2/5 stars on goodreads. I can't believe that someone could write a book that is almost 400 pages long, consists almost completely of telling instead of showing and still has almost nothing happen. Things started to get a little more interesting towards the end but not enough for me to actually read the sequel.

    I promised myself that I would read an adult book next, but I lied. Next up is Anna Dressed in Blood, which has dark brown-red type that my old fart eyes might not be able to handle. In which case, I'll read The Agency 1: A Spy in the House. It's about a secret spy agency that allows girls to kick ass in secret while remaining good Victorian young ladies in public.
    Roll Tide, y'all!

  18. #818

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    Quote Originally Posted by IceAlisa View Post
    I can see how the above could be applied to some of Austen's heroines but not all. Anne in Pursuasion, yes but not Lizzie Bennett in P&P.
    My thoughts exactly! Austen's women are rarely accused of passivity.
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  19. #819
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wyliefan View Post
    My thoughts exactly! Austen's women are rarely accused of passivity.
    Even Anne in Pursuasion wasn't that passive. She refused her father's request to visit the rich relative, and visited her old schoolfriend instead. She also refused to marry Mr. Eliot, even though that's what everyone expects her to do.

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    Quote Originally Posted by moojja View Post
    Even Anne in Pursuasion wasn't that passive. She refused her father's request to visit the rich relative, and visited her old schoolfriend instead. She also refused to marry Mr. Eliot, even though that's what everyone expects her to do.
    And when she received the letter from Wentworth and knows his true feelings, she immediately tries to go after him to let him know how she feels.

    I do think that Elinor Dashwood and Fanny Price are pretty passive (although Fanny also steadfastly refuses Henry Crawford's proposals), but definitely not Emma Woodhouse, Marianne Dashwood, or Elizabeth Bennet. Hard to say with Catherine Morland where she falls...she's easily led by the Thorpes, but when she realizes that they're pushing her around, she starts to stand up for herself. I think Catherine's not so much passive as just naive and ignorant.

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