Books: Notes From The Underground

GOODNIGHT! by Abram Tertz (Andrei Sinyavsky)

Translated by Richard Lourie; Viking; 364 pages; $22.95

Communism continues to lend new meaning to the term "in the red." But while the West gloats, let us not forget to give credit where credit is due. Despite its dismal economic record, Communism was responsible for much of the best writing of the century. This was especially true in the Soviet Union, where revolution brought out the best in Boris Pasternak. Vladimir Nabokov said that had it not been for the Bolsheviks, he would have remained in Russia to become an obscure entomologist. Stalin inspired some...

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