Those of you who have been witnesses to this colossal project I began three years ago, know that I have a deeply ambivalent relationship with the two main figures in my dissertation. Both Mácha and Lermontov have written some breath-takingly gorgeous poetry. I cannot deny them their genius. But since I'm interested in the poet persona and its later interpretation, I have to deal extensively with biography. And let me tell you, biographies of young men (both Mácha and Lermontov shuffled off this mortal coil at the ripe old age of twenty-six) are annoying. It's like being in high school all over again, but with a slightly more prudish set of social norms dictating behaviour, which is why I laughed when I read a note from one of Lermontov's friends, calling him "a pain in the neck." It's nice to know that I'm not the only one.
I can't wait for this to be over.
There's nothing below the fold.