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Saturday, December 3, 2016

Dmitry Bykov — about Iskander: “We must grow”


…Did not Fazil Iskander, who retired on 88 year of life. Pointing out the numerous regalia pointless, in his case they are a few crayons. Son of the father, deported from the USSR, growing up in the Abkhaz village of Chegem, and then College journey, first published in the “Youth” uncensored “metropolis”… Iskander — a great artist of complex and large-scale blood biography; and how with the early 70’s his “Sandro” with “Constellation Kozlotura” stood in a conspicuous place on bookshelves, so they stand there to this day. You do not want platitudes; we have to congratulate the author with the acquisition of a new life, but how many meted out his books — we talked with Dmitry Bykov.

Photos tanci-kavkaza.ru

— Dmitry, is that accepted during the life of the classics can say a lot of good things, but here I want to ask specifically — what remains of Iskander, for example, in the school curriculum?

— If it depended on me, in the school curriculum would be the story of the “Heart” (which once was a separate work, and then became part of the “Parking man”). The story of how the hero, after an unsuccessful spearfishing starts having a heart attack, he can’t swim; it takes six months, our hero decided to go fishing with the neighbor boy. And he, when the boat capsized, falls into the icy April water with the boy kilometre swim to shore. And he is cured of his pain and fears, to save a child. Act of this is opposed to the proud men of universal cowardice and meanness. This, in my opinion, a very important text. The story “a Summer day” could enter the program and decorate it… And in General, the smaller the Iskander will be in the school curriculum, the better.

“Why’s that?

And because he’s a writer — not for children. Writer for Mature, masculine, something that has seen the reader.

— Romance studies? “Sandro from Chegem”?

— Sandro” — a novel not for children. Iskander is a serious author. Although children also need to write serious literature, but you know, Iskander need to read to understand life.

But what will remain relevant, will be republished?

— To a great extent — “Constellation Kozlotura”. There was the most amazing, the most accurate insight about Soviet life, and generally… the kozlotura (a cross between mountain tour and domestic goat) is a symbol of the Soviet hybridity. Michurinskiy artificial life. A sort of attempt to bring a new person and a new country — because the kozlotura and it is also a parody, not just a particular Khrushchev’s leadership. In this sense, “Kozlotura” rather touching and sweet, in General, that there is a re-release. Not to mention the fact that Iskander was a first-rate poet; so that his post-mortem existence will be very long. In addition, when the status of “lifetime classic” Fazil Iskander really read many. Read it those who love such Marksovskiy thick southern-Gothic prose. Who appreciate the archaic values of the Eastern tradition — a combination of ornate and aphoristic; it seems to me that Iskander really read in the 70s when smart readers had a lot of…

In contrast to the current times…

— Of course. And his time will come. Will come when we will reach the level of the 70’s — at least in theory, when we grow up from the current state, then only will again be able to read “Sandro from Chegem”, to read such chapters as “the Feasts of Belshazzar”, for example. Need to grow up.

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