1 thought on “Котлован”

  1. I read great swathes of this book as absurdist black comedy, and kept imagining the events portrayed as scenes in a marginally avant-garde silent film. Each character is a ghost, or husk of itself, and moves through the narrative as a reasoning automaton, even if that reasoning is fatally flawed, and is not even properly “reasoning”. Each character is trapped inside its own type-casting, with this type-casting being triple-layered – by the author, by the pervasive authority within the narr [...]

  2. platonov, an atheist, believed that communism could take hold only if it met and surpassed the needs fulfilled by religion; in other words, the revolution would have to fill the ol' God-Shaped Hole if it wanted to stick around. it didn't. it couldn't. and platonov realized this. his characters don't. they sublimate themselves in communism to find some kind of spiriual answer. good luck. sisyphus would gladly trade spots with these suckers who devote their lives to digging a pit that will serve a [...]

  3. bildiğimiz platonov romanlarından, öykülerinden daha farklı. anlattıklarıyla, metaforlarıyla tam bir stalin dönemi eleştirisi. bunu hem trajik, hem komik bir biçimde aktarıyor aslında.görev bilinciyle tutuşan atlar, demir döven ayılar, işleri bittiği an mutsuzluğa düşen proleterler ve platonov'un dili bilerek bozuk kullanması önce şaşırıp çeviride bir sorun olduğunu sandığım ama güney çeteo kızılırmak'tan hayatta beklemediğim bu kullanım, sonradan anlaşı [...]

  4. على الرغم من أني اليوم كنت قد حظيت بكفايتي من النوم - أكثر من أي شخص تقريبًا - إلا أني بمجرد أن أخذت هذه الرواية بين يدي (مجازيًا فقط، استعارة مكنية عن التابلت) فما وجدتني إلا أسقط من جديد في أيدي النوم وسلطانه. الرواية مملة، ومملة بشكل بشع، مع أن بدايتها كانت تماما على العكس من [...]

  5. Platonov writes with a minimalist style in a stark Russian landscape in the midst of the absolute absurdity of a mindless Communist bureaucracy killing its people to dig a vast foundation pit in the middle of nowhere. The net effect, like the writing of Samuel Beckett, is vulnerable characters searching without hope for meaning, which is absent or unfathomable or beyond their reach. This novel is a moving foray into the theatre of the absurd as the characters deal with the heartbreak and death a [...]

  6. '() não havia verdade neste mundo, ou talvez ela tivesse existido numa qualquer planta ou numa criatura heróica, mas passou um pobre caminheiro e comeu essa planta ou espezinhou a humilde criatura, e depois ele próprio morreu num barranco outonal e o vento soprou o seu corpo para o nada.'

  7. We always believe that the bright future is just around the corner and we wait for it to come…“…on the face of each young Pioneer girl there remained a trace of the difficulty, the feebleness of early life, meagerness of body and beauty of expression. But the happiness of childhood friendship, the realization of the future world in the play of youth and in the worthiness of their own severe freedom signified on the childish faces important gladness, replacing for them beauty and domestic p [...]

  8. Ein Roman aus der Zeit nach der Russischen Oktoberrevolution,eine Zeit des Umbruchs und der Zwangskollektivierung, die Menschensehen in der Zukunft nicht als Arbeit vor sich.Der eigentliche Akteur im Roman ist allerdings die Sprache, eine Herausforderung für den Leser, alle Figuren sprechen sonderbar und falsch, "Das ist kein Russisch sondern Kauderwelsch" sagte Stalin 1931.Ich persönlich fand es ironisch und natürlich vom Autor bewusst eingesetzt.

  9. "Now we feel nothing at all - only dust and ashes remain in us." (104)I appreciate many forms of literature; three particular (and often interwoven) kinds occupy elevated spots: Russian literature, Soviet-era literature, and prison literature/literature of rebellion. Dostoevsky, Grossman, Solzhenitsyn, Shalamov, Koestler – I could go on naming favorite writers that combine some or all of these categories. One person who fits them rather swimmingly, and whom I had not previously read, is Platon [...]

  10. Tis is a no usual distopic novel,is rather a totalitarian based reality distopic novel;is one no easy to read but Platonov is a great writer and its worth the time.The novel is on the forced intense industrialization and collectivization of the farms in hands of the peasants and his destruction,sometimes physically,as a class in the quinquenal last 20s plan ordered by Stalin(a fanatic genocide that most has made for desprestigiate socialism as a ideology).This work of Platonov is a sinister ,aci [...]

  11. Es war kein Vergnügen dieses Buch zu lesen, eher eine Quälerei. Keinesfalls will ich damit sagen, dass es schlecht geschrieben wäre. Im Gegenteil, die beklemmende Atmosphäre überträgt sich nur allzu gut auf einen selbst. Mit jeder gelesenen Seite verdichtet sich das Gefühl einer tristen Ausweglosigkeit. Denn in dieser Welt gibt es keine Hoffnung mehr – alle Illusionen einer verheißungsvollen Zukunft sind verloren gegangen. Die Baugrube ist ein Spiegelbild der post-revolutionären, sowj [...]

  12. I admire Andrey Platonov's ability to bring out absurd hilarity of terrible things. In this way I was reminded a little of Salinger and Melville, but more like a fantastic meal reminds you of other similarly fantastic meals. I've never seen the word "boring" used so strangely and to such effect. If you're looking for a book that is totally linear in plot, this book is not for you. It goes forward in time, sure, but the characters move here and there almost without reason, and it's never clear ho [...]

  13. Terrifying and sad book. What happens when you take out all individuality from people? You are left with empty caricatures. It is so well written though, you see other things, sadness, but also compassion and humor.Amazing discovery, Platonov.

  14. This is not the first time that I’ve given a book three stars due to reader inadequacy. It took me a long time to get through ‘The Foundation Pit’ because it’s a dense, elusive, and confusing novel. I was somewhat relieved to discover in the translator’s afterword that it wasn’t just me, as even in the original Russian, with detailed knowledge of Stalinist collectivisation and the bible, it is apparently tricky to understand. Not much happens, yet every sentence is filled with layers [...]

  15. It has been two years since I read this novel and unlike all the other books I have listed on I never wrote a review for this one. I found the book too overwhelming. There was too much I wanted to say about it, and I knew I wouldn't be able to do it justice, because however much I did say, there would always be something left out. In short, I will state that it is the strangest and most disturbing novel I have ever read, but 'strange' and 'disturbing' in a unique way, not in the way that (for e [...]

  16. This might be the one book I'd recommend about life in the early days of the Soviet Union.A group of builders are digging out the foundations for a building. The symbolism is clear. What the building will be is not ever made clear and may not even be important. The men are struggling with the implications of the new regime which has turned the way of life, the way of thinking and all relationships upside down. The future is deeply uncertain, the new world is under construction. That unknown, unv [...]

  17. Despite all the image of it being a dull, glum place, the Soviet Union produced a fair number of satirists – although few if any of the really good ones were published in the USSR. Bulgakov’s satire is biting, and in some work subtle, while other work in the 1920s, especially the early part of the decade, was very much of the politically engaged and critical avant-garde, some of it (a fair amount) produced by Party members, true believers in the forthcoming era of liberation that was foretol [...]

  18. Set during the first Five-Year Plan (1928-32), it deals with the attempts of a group of labourers to dig the foundation pit of a vast building that is to house the local proletariat, before moving on to describe the expropriation and expulsion of a group of rich peasants from a nearby collective farm. Soviet writers at the time were expected to record and celebrate the achievements of industrialisation and collectivisation, and indeed, the drives to modernise agriculture were the subject of seve [...]

  19. The Foundation Pit is one of the most difficult books I’ve read in recent years, but it’s worth the effort if you enjoy dystopia or innovative language. The book, written in 1929-1930, is an allegory of the era of collectivization: workers digging a pit for a foundation also find themselves digging, in effect, a collective grave. They take part in the collectivization campaign, too, banishing kulaks by sending them away by raft. It's brutal, funny, and sad. Platonov layers many, many philoso [...]

  20. I thought this was quite brilliant. It is very bleak and depressing though.A retelling of the Stalin enforced exile and death of the kulaks, the resulting starvation of millions of peasants, state control and the foretelling of the end of communism. All in a set of parables.The gigantic house being built by the workers to house the proletariats.Voschev who we meet after being fired for thinking on the job, who searches for the meaning of life through a collection of inanimate objects.Children wh [...]

  21. A nightmare of language suborned to meaninglessness. Double-speak eating its own tail before diffusing out into void and psychotic referencelessness. All in service to some end without means: the bright burning light of total totalitarianism.

  22. رواية عن الأوضاع الروسية في مطلع نصف القرن الماضي تتحدث عن معاناة الأثرياء والمُلّلاك مقابل سيادة الطبقة العاملة (البروليتاريا)والتفاصيل الدقيقة للحياة اليومية للعمال حيث كانت الثيمة الرئيسية تدور حول بناء مجمع بروليتاري على أنقاض حفرة بائدة كانت الشخصيات الرئيسية في الر [...]

  23. As far as satires of the Soviet state, Platonov doesn't have much on Bulgakov, Pelevin, or Zamyatin, all of whom were much more interesting in their elaborations of the failures of a teleologically bound society. That being said, Platonov has filled with his book with some nice grotesque imagery and some nice snarky bits, but I'm left wanting.

  24. Groteska. Metafizika, egzistencija. Distopija. Nije travestija u klasičnom ili očitom smislu pojma, ali jedan od slojeva bez sumnje je travestija nonšalantno (!) krvožedne boljševičke retorike (roman je napisan čak 1930-e, a objavljen, jasno, tek 50 i kusur godina poslije u Rusiji). Fragmenti/momenti magijskog realizma. Jedinstveno iskustvo, donekle podsjeća na Nietzscheovog Zaratustru, ali samo asocijativno i svojom alegoričnom filozofičnošću. Prilično teška prohodnost jer kao da [...]

  25. The Robert Chandler translation is of the complete text. Previous translations are not.This began as a very difficult read. About halfway through, I can remember the actual line, it started to take off. Not because the first half is poorly written or uninteresting, but because it took me that long to calibrate my reading to the language and organization of the text. Once I did, I started it again. The last time I had to do so was with Beckett's Trilogy. Interestingly, Platonov is sometimes compa [...]

  26. "You did not possess the meaning of life; stay here - and I'll find out what you lived for and perished for. Since no one needs you and you lie about amidst the whole world, then I shall store and remember you."This story not only essentially acts as a critique of socialism and communism, but it acts as a critique of the way people see their own lives. Full to the brim with memorable quotes from absurd but relatable characters, this book questions everything so intrinsic to communal life, as wel [...]

  27. A devastating satire of Soviet collectivism and class hatred that turns the language of Soviet communism against itself. Platonov's use of this language exposes it as ridiculous while the characters try to live according to the language's absurd precepts - surely it's the companion piece to 1984. It's a wonder that Platonov survived, though I think many of these works remained unpublished, or else they went right over the heads of the censors. I found the writing a bit dense but the translator g [...]

  28. Najważniejsza rosyjska (w pewnym stopniu także radziecka) antyutopia, młócąca czytelnika każdym zdaniem. Jednak szczerze odradzam zmierzenia się z tłumaczeniem Poznańskiego, lepiej odnaleźć zakurzone, poprzednie.

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