Monday, October 10, 2022

A fresh look at a master’s tales …

On the Richness of Isaac Babel’s Odessa. (Hat tip, Dave Lull.)

Bringing these stories together under one cover allows us to view the larger-than-life figures of Benya the King, Froim the Rook and Lyubka the Cossack through the eyes of the child whose dream of doves is dashed by a pogromist’s blow, whose world is “small and terrible,” who shuts his “only unplastered eye” so that he doesn’t have to see what lies bare before him: “a jagged pebble, like the face of an old woman with a large jaw; and a piece of string; and a clump of feathers, still breathing.”

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