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  • Published: 15 January 2012
  • ISBN: 9781846556548
  • Imprint: Harvill Secker
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 704
  • RRP: $55.00
Categories:

Hope Abandoned



'Mrs Mandelstam's bitter reminiscences read like unvarnished reality itself... her descriptions of events and circumstances and situations carry total conviction. In this respect the work seems to me literally unique' - Isiah Berlin

Hope Against Hope recounted the last four years in the life of the great Russian poet, Osip Mandelstam, and gave a hair-raising account of Stalin's terror. Hope Abandoned complements that earlier masterpiece, and in it Nadezhda Mandelstam describes their life together from 1919, and her own after Mandelstam's death in a labour camp in 1938. She also sets out his system of values and beliefs, and provides striking portraits of many of their contemporaries including Boris Pasternak and their champion till his own downfall, Nikolai Bukharin, as well as an astonishingly candid picture of Anna Akhmatova.

  • Published: 15 January 2012
  • ISBN: 9781846556548
  • Imprint: Harvill Secker
  • Format: Trade Paperback
  • Pages: 704
  • RRP: $55.00
Categories:

About the author

Nadezhda Mandelstam

Nadezhda Yakovlevna Mandelstam was born in Saratov in 1899, but spent her early life in Kiev, studying art and travelling widely in Western Europe. She learned English, French and German fluently enough to undertake extensive translation work, which supported her in the hard years ahead. She met the poet Osip Mandelstam in Kiev in 1919, and they married in 1922. From then until Osip's death, her life was so inextricably linked with her husband's that without her extraordinary courage and fortitude most of his work would have died with him. She spent the Second World War in Tashkent, teaching English and sharing a house with her close friend the poet Anna Akhmatova. After the war she led an inconspicuous existence as a teacher of English in remote provincial towns. In 1964 she was granted permission to return to Moscow, where she began to write her memoir of the life she had shared with one of the greatest Russian poets of the twentieth century, and where she continued to preserve his works and his memory in the face of official disapproval. Nadezhda means 'hope' in Russian, and she herself chose the English titles for her two-volume memoirs. She died in 1980.

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Praise for Hope Abandoned

Two of the most fortifying books of our times, Nadezhda Mandelstam’s Hope against Hope and Hope Abandoned ... were finally written in the late Sixties. In these books, we have a devastating indictment of most of what happened in post-revolutionary Russia

Seamus Heaney, London Review of Books

A bursting compendium of glances at people, framed in essays of scorn for the inquisitors and compassion for the victims... If she is vinegarish, she is also powerful and enhancing

V.S. Pritchett

Describes the whole range of her life with Mandelstam, their travels, vicissitudes and friendships, above all the friendship with Akhmatova... a vivid triple portrait

New Society

Max Hayward's translation reads easily and seems to me to convey exactly the style and tone in which this great book is written

Daily Telegraph

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