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Great for third- or fourth-year Russian students!Feb. 22 2008
- Published on Amazon.com
The Death of Ivan Ilyich is one of Tolstoy's most interesting novellas to begin with--and although it's not easy for even native Russian speakers to tackle in the original, this edition makes it much more easily accessible to learners.
The introduction is written in English, and it tells a bit about Tolstoy himself, and about the novella's significance and influence on other literary works.
The text (IN RUSSIAN, do not think otherwise!) is the unabridged version, and is printed with stress marks, something that, as a Russian student who reads the text aloud for practice, I very much appreciate! It's rare for a text in Russian to include such stress marks.
The endnotes are frequent and very helpful, describing things from difficult grammatical constructions to the card games Ivan Ilyich and his colleagues might have played, to inconsistencies in Tolstoy's own reporting of dates and times.
There is a Russian-English dictionary in the back, which includes key terms that learners might not necessarily know--specifically, there is a lot of terminology related to medicine and law (two subjects on which, given the nature of the story, technical terminology frequently appears in the text).
In short, I absolutely love this edition. It enables Russian students and non-native speakers to read and understand one of Tolstoy's most famous and important novellas. It's one of those rare unabridged Tolstoy stories that's accessible to even third- or fourth-year Russian students!