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L'affaire Toulaev : Un roman révolutionnaire

par Victor Serge

Autres auteurs: Voir la section autres auteur(e)s.

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6171029,192 (4.17)1 / 94
A high government official is shot on the street on a cold winter night, and the search for the killer begins. In Victor Serge's panoramic vision of the Stalin era, the investigation leads all over the world, netting a whole series of suspects whose only connection is their innocence- at least of the crime of which they have been accused. But this, the best novel ever written about the Stalinist purges, is also a classic tale of risk and adventure that stands beside Malraux's Man's Fateand Hemingway's For Whom the Bell Tolls.… (plus d'informations)
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» Voir aussi les 94 mentions

Affichage de 1-5 de 10 (suivant | tout afficher)
An excellently broad and empathetic story written with the style of classical Russian narrative, that moves through a selection of diverse characters living in Stalin's Russia. Serge's writing allows the characters to become individual figures that are also metaphors for the block unity of the Soviet people. The last few pages conclude with a letter that is reminiscent of Charlie Chaplin's speech in The Great Dictator, with a powerful philosophical punch, highlighting the author's divided opinion on the utopian ideals of the October Revolution, and the complexity of its aftermath. Sometimes the writing is a little dated (nearly all of the characters are male; at times the writing is too obvious) but the book is extremely enjoyable, often funny, and well paced. ( )
  ephemeral_future | Aug 20, 2020 |
There are aspects of this which I confuse with Yury Dombrovsky; both Faculty of Useless Knowedge and Serge's Case of Comrade Tulayev affected me deeply. The gradual ratcheting in this one was amazing. ( )
  jonfaith | Feb 22, 2019 |
This book is set during the late 1930's, at the height of the Stalinist purges. Comrade Tulayev, a high party official, is assassinated in a random, unplanned crime of opportunity by an anonymous clerk. The system demanded convictions, and thus began a series of prosecutions of innocent long-time party members. They are arrested and interrogated. In some cases, false confessions are elicited. Some of those arrested are exiled; some are executed.

No one is exempt. Even High Commissar Erchov, who was the official initially conducting the investigation, is arrested. Even men who were close friends with Stalin. Even Deportee Ryzhik, who prior to his arrest, had lived for many years thousands of miles from the scene of the crime, in exile in a remote Siberian village peopled only by a few peasants and one government official stationed there as his guard.

This book was recommended to me after I read The Whisperers, a nonfiction history of the Stalinist years and its effects on ordinary Soviet people. While The Case of Comrade Tulayev explores similar issues, the people it focuses on are, ironically, some of the very people who created the system that allowed the purges to occur. Highly recommended. ( )
  arubabookwoman | May 3, 2017 |
A good, but not great, read

This book was a bit too wandering for my taste. I had expected a tightly-woven plot, but the author digressed too much with philosophical musings.
  oparaxenos | Nov 27, 2015 |
Adorno's famous statement - that it is barbaric to write lyric poetry after Auschwitz –is an expression of a more general dilemma: how does art deal with the horrors of reality, and is it indeed appropriate to create an aesthetic experience based on horror? In the case of this novel, the horror is the Great Purge of 1934-8, or the Yezhovshchina, as it is called in Russian, and the novel stands on a par with Akhmatova's long poem Requiem as both an indictment and a testament to what occurred.

Read the full review onThe Lectern ( )
10 voter tomcatMurr | Sep 13, 2012 |
Affichage de 1-5 de 10 (suivant | tout afficher)
The post-1934 spy fever may have had a core of rationality when it began, or was inaugurated, but its special feature was the sheer mania and panic in which it engulfed society, becoming an exhausting, unstoppable thing in itself. At one point (Doris Lessing describes it somewhere in her account of abandoning communism) medieval instruments of torture were taken from Russian museums and deployed in the cellars and interrogation pits of Stalin’s police. The image is perfect for evoking the choking medieval nightmare of plague-dread, xenophobia, and persecution that enveloped the Soviet Union and destroyed the last remnants of its internationalism. If the characters and automatons of The Case of Comrade Tulayev understand any one thing, it is the idea that the enemy is everywhere, and everyone...

Given the contempt Serge always felt for Stalin’s collaborators, a remarkable feature of The Case of Comrade Tulayev is its chiaroscuro, in one passage the monstrous figure of “The Chief” is represented as a prisoner of fate, only pretending to arbitrate the destiny of a sixth of the earth’s surface and of every one of its inhabitants... In its remorseless emphasis on the ineluctable along with its insistence on the vitality of individual human nature, The Case of Comrade Tulayev is one of the most Marxist novels ever written—as it is also one of the least.
ajouté par SnootyBaronet | modifierThe Atlantic, Christopher Hitchens
 

» Ajouter d'autres auteur(e)s (4 possibles)

Nom de l'auteur(e)RôleType d'auteurŒuvre ?Statut
Victor Sergeauteur(e) principal(e)toutes les éditionscalculé
Sontag, SusanIntroductionauteur secondairequelques éditionsconfirmé
Trask, Willard R.Traducteurauteur secondairequelques éditionsconfirmé

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A high government official is shot on the street on a cold winter night, and the search for the killer begins. In Victor Serge's panoramic vision of the Stalin era, the investigation leads all over the world, netting a whole series of suspects whose only connection is their innocence- at least of the crime of which they have been accused. But this, the best novel ever written about the Stalinist purges, is also a classic tale of risk and adventure that stands beside Malraux's Man's Fateand Hemingway's For Whom the Bell Tolls.

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