Synopses & Reviews
Joseph Brodsky's life was epic in scope. From imprisonment in the Soviet Union and subsequent flight to the West to a new beginning in the United States and international fame -- culminating in a Nobel Prize -- Brodsky is one of the most fascinating literary figures of our time. Ironically, he was also a humble and quiet man, given to intense reflection, self-deprecation, and wry humor.
Cultural critic Solomon Volkov interviewed Brodsky over a period of 15 years and has created a portrait of him using the best and most representative of their conversations. Whether the subject is Brodsky's childhood adventures in war-ravaged Leningrad, his trial as a "parasite" in Kruschev's Russia, his lifelong love of Auden and Frost, or his thoughts on winning the Nobel Prize, the spirit of the man, the poet, and the times are palpable. In Brodsky, the powerful currents of 20th-century history, poetry, and politics combined to produce an intellectual hero with a resounding international voice. This is a testament to the poet's passionate intelligence and engagement with life.