Monday, September 19, 1994

The Nose

by Nikolai Gogol
translated by Gleb and Mary Struve

This unusual story is a great piece of work – absurd, somewhat satirical, rather mocking in tone, but with an affectionate tinge to it. Commentary by the translators suggests that there is no reason to Gogol’s surrealism, but I think it could hardly be possible Freudian symbolism was not in his mind. Kovaloyov’s social “impotence” at his loss and his haughty machismo upon reattachment could hardly signify anything else. A very funny and sharp-witted story.

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