Eugene Onegin Readalong, 1 & 2

Eugene Onegin Readalong, 1 & 2

I am keeping up with the readalong, but not with the blog posting about the readathon.  I have a new copy with a different translation--Stanley Mitchell--and I love it.  I think it was Tom the Amateur Reader who told me that if the Deutsch translation was the one I'd read before, reading a different version would be like reading a different book, and it is.  I'm very glad to be reading this for the second time, so I can absorb better!  Tanglewood has these questions about the first two chapters:

Chapters 1 & 2 Questions

- First impressions of Eugene?
Honestly, Eugene is not the kind of guy I love.  Society dandies drenched in ennui--no, thank you.  Though I rather suspect that Pushkin is poking a little fun at the type, maybe?

- What do you make of the narrator's commentary?
He's humorous and a bit ironic while being sympathetic too.  I think.  I don't know of another poem where the narrator puts himself so much into the story as a writer.  "Well, here I am at the end of Chapter 1.  Off you go, little poem!"  He breaks the fourth wall quite a lot.

- Thoughts on the characters sketched out in Chapter 2?
Lensky is a nice boy, though idealistic poets are also not my cup of tea.  Olga is a sweet girl, and though she is supposed to lack depth, she is something like 17 years old so that is not very worrying. Tatiana I love, though if she were my kid I'd want to make her go outside and get some exercise.  I'd worry about her a bit, what with the never playing, but she is a lovely girl.

Ongoing Questions

- Reactions and/or predictions?
 Well, I'm enjoying it, don't know that I have much else to say right now.  I already read it once so I know what's going to happen.

- Any quotes or passages that stand out?
I think this translation is better than the one I read first, so I'm much happier with it this time.  It flows better, I think. 


  1. Poking fun - yes, I think so. Poking fun at himself, even.

    I have not even started yet, but I knew that schedule would not work for me. I'll likely gulp the book down. So I'll catch up.


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