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ClassicsOnline Home » GOGOL, N.: Dead Souls (Abridged)
Gogol’s great Russian classic is the Pickwick Papers of Russian Literature. It takes a sharp but humorous look at life in all its strata, but especially the devious complexities in the country with its landowners and serfs. We are introduced to Chichikov, a businessman who, in order to trick the tax authorities, buys up dead ‘souls’ or serfs whose names still appear on the government census. Despite being a dealer in phantom crimes and paper ghosts, he is the most beguiling of Gogol’s characters. Gogol’s obsession with attempting to display ‘the untold riches of the Russian soul’ eventually led him to madness, religious mania and death. Dismissed by him as merely ‘a pale introduction to the great epic poem which is taking shape in my mind’, Dead Souls is the culmination of Gogol’s genius.
Read by Gordon Griffin
Gogol’s great comic masterpiece paints an hilariously
satirical picture of provincial life in 19th century Russia. Its publication in
1847 not only provided inspiration for succeeding generations of Russian
writers, but fanned the already flickering flames of social discontent which
were eventually to flare up and consume Russia in the revolution of 1917.
ABOUT THE READER
Gordon Griffin has recorded over 220 audiobooks. His vast
range includes nine Catherine Cookson novels, books by Melvyn Bragg, David
Lodge, the entire Wycliffe series by W.J. Burley and his award-winning
recording of A Tale of Two Cities. Gordon also appears regularly on television
and in films. He was dialogue coach (Geordie) on Byker Grove and Kavanagh QC.
He has also read The Life and Works of Marcel Proust for Naxos AudioBooks.
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GOGOL, N.: Dead Souls (Abridged)