All posts tagged: Memoir

Review: Memories: From Moscow to the Black Sea

Book by TEFFI (Translated from Russian by ROBERT and ELIZABETH CHANDLER, ANNE MARIE JACKSON, and IRINA STEINBERG)
Reviewed by OLGA ZILBERBOURG

Memories: From Moscow to the Black SeaTeffi, nom de plume of Nadezhda Lokhvitskaya, was born in 1872 into a prominent Russian family. Following in the footsteps of her older sister Maria—poet Mirra Lokhvitskaya—Teffi published poetry and prose from the age of 29. She soon rose to fame by practicing a unique brand of self-deprecating humor and topical social satire. In her 1907 hit one-act play The Woman Question, subtitled A Fantasy, Teffi imagined a world in which a women’s revolution against men achieves a full role reversal. Women come to occupy the prominent political, military, academic, professional, and bureaucratic roles, while men are subjugated to the childcare and household management tasks. Though the play’s ending largely dismisses this scenario and trivializes the feminist cause, through humor, the piece makes the point that bad behavior—infidelity, sexual harassment, excessive drinking, pettiness—is a function of social status rather than of biological sex.

Review: Memories: From Moscow to the Black Sea
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Review: Townie

Book by ANDRE DUBUS III
Reviewed by MELINDA MISENER

Townie

Townie is a book about fighting and writing. But it’s mostly about fighting: wanting to fight, learning to fight, training to fight, getting in fights. In the end, it’s about learning not to fight. (I’m not giving much away: a whole lot happens in the middle, and the final scene in which Dubus peels himself away from the urge to fight is lovely and stirring.)

Andre Dubus III spends his boyhood getting beat up a lot. Still scrawny at fourteen, he tells himself:

“I don’t care if you get your face beat in, I don’t care if you get kicked in the head or stabbed or even shot, I will never allow you not to fight back ever again. You hear me?”

Review: Townie
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